Omate Announces Crowdfunding for Rise, a $199 3G Smartwatch
Omate, the Chinese smartwatch company that kicked up a storm on crowd funding sites when it raised $100,000 within 12 hours (and more than $1,032,000 overall) for its TrueSmart smartwatch, is back again, hoping to kick up another storm for its latest smartwatch.
Called the Omate Rise, the smartwatch follows along the modus operandi of earlier Omate smartwatches by being a complete mobile device by itself. The smartwatch features a micro sim card slot which can be used to connect to 3G HSPA on 1900 MHz and 2100 MHz bands. Or if you so wish, you can use it on WiFi or connect it to your Android 4.4+ device or iPhone (iOS 9+) via Bluetooth Low Energy using dedicated apps.
On the watch itself, the main materials used are polycarbonate, with a carbon fibre bezel, lending the device a light weight of 80 g. The watch has a 1.3″ TFT LCD display with a resolution of 360×360 pixels, with Sapphire coating on top for scratch resistance. The watch is also certified for 1 ATM, giving it an ability to withstand pressures of up to 10m. However, this certification only allows the watch to be safe to use under rain and for light splashes, but cautions against showering or swimming, so this is one key area where the device leaves more to be desired.
Inside the device is a MediaTek MT2601 chipset featuring 2x Cortex A7 cores clocked at 1.2 GHz, along with a Mali-400 handling the GPU department. The smartwatch sports 512MB of RAM and 4GB of internal storage, along with a microSD card for expansion. The device also supports WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth v4.1 with A2DP and BLE support, a GPS sensor with A-GPS support and Gyroscope, a speaker and microphone for calls and a 580 mAh non-removable Li-Po battery to power it all.
Does it still sound like a smartwatch? At this stage, the Omate Rise is more of a smartphone than a smartwatch. To further work upon this concept, the smartwatch runs on Android 5.1 Lollipop with Omate’s OUI 4.0 skin on top. The skin is especially needed in this case because the watch is running an almost full-fledged OS, one that may not be designed for functionality on small circular displays which are held quite far away than normal smartphones are held. The Omate Rise can function like a smartphone, including running full Android apps with the full suite of Google Play Services.
The Omate Rise also has one more trick up its sleeve: it’s price. The Rise will cost a mere $199 for such an exhaustive feature list.
But where’s the catch?
The catch comes in the crowdfunding campaign. The Omate Rise’s $199 price tag (and March 2016 availability) is limited to the 48-hour Indiegogo campaign, after which the device will retail for $349 and will be available after June 2016. The Indiegogo campaign can be found here, but the page will go online only on Monday, December 7, 2015 at 10am EST. The first 500 units sold in the campaign will cost $199, then the next 500 units for $209 and $219 after that. The first 1,000 devices will also come with an external BLE Heart Rate Monitoring chest belt to compensate for the lack of a heart rate sensor in the smartwatch.
The Omate Rise is definitely an interesting piece of tech to look out for. Just like preceding watches from Omate, we can expect the device to get a lot of activity on Indiegogo and reach its $30,000 goal in no time at all. If you are looking forward to get your hands on this watch, we suggest setting an alarm for the event.
What do you think of the Omate Rise? Are full-fledged smartphones viable in a wearable form factor? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!