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Cheaper Smartwatch Alternative by Archos

The only time I heard about Archos was when I read about their Android gaming console called the Archos Gamepad some time earlier this year. The Gamepad is not available in Malaysia but it can be purchased via online stores such as eBay or Alibaba.

archos-smartwatch-press-leadNow the same company that made the Gamepad is announcing the next line of smartwatch selections. Archos will debut multiple ‘Pebble-like’ smartwatches at CES, starting at less than USD$50 (RM150-RM180). To me, that is quite cheap considering that other smartwatches can be priced close to RM1,000 such as the Galaxy Gear and the Sony Smartwatch. The other smartwatch that is gaining popularity is Pebble, which is priced at about USD$150 (RM400-RM500). It is still cheaper than those made by Samsung and Sony. In fact, the Pebble was voted as the best smartwatch of 2013.

But now we’re looking at Archos. They are focusing on making a more affordable smartwatch similar to Pebble, towards the low-mid range target audience. So for someone like me who love these kind of gadgets, can finally give this one a try. I wanted to get the Pebble but then I can’t afford one.

What do I think the users are looking for in a smartwatch?

The Pebble is a good comparison benchmark. I won’t be looking at Galaxy Gear or any of those Android based smartwatch because most of us are already using a smartphone. Why do we need another device that is attached to our wrist that is also an Android/iOS based hardware? Sure, Galaxy Gear is cool to have but I heard that it is lagging so bad after a while. Let’s put it this way. The reason why they created the smartwatch in the first place is so that we don’t have to take our phones out from our pocket/bag in order to see who is calling or messaging us. All the information is displayed at a glance. That’s all.

So the ideas that we can put in for the next generation of smartwatches, whether it is by Archos or Pebble, is the functionality. Pebble has some issues sometimes like not displaying an incoming call. Users may have to restart the phone for it to work again. So what Archos need to do is to learn from others’ mistakes. To me, I will buy the smartwatch without any hesitation if the smartwatch can display information on who is calling, display incoming text messages (native sms or from WhatsApp/WeChat), having a nice interface or rather watch face and is waterproof. And of course, it must be stable to use without any glitch. Would be nice to just simply sync the watch with our phones and everything works perfectly.

Bottom line, compatibility is important.

While the Pebble is the best of 2013 and the more expensive ones by Samsung and Sony are out of reach for some of us, I see some silver lining emerging in near future. All thanks to Archos. But they need to make it a good one in order to finish ahead of the race. I’m Watch is another excellent smartwatch to look out for, but their mistake is that they’re selling it too expensive (USD$349) similar to Samsung and Sony.

If Archos is looking to impress the lower tier users, then they have to make a good cheaper smartwatch alternative to the others. That’s all I can say.

Source of info: Engadget

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