The wearable technology market has seen some intriguing new additions recently, with Nike and Adidas (among others) looking to invest big. But as the market is still in its infancy, this offers small companies with an innovative product a chance to market themselves against the big boys, which is what we’re seeing with the Neptune Pine.
Marketed as, ‘the definitive all-in-one smartwatch’, the Pine offers voice calls, video chat, full keyboard, and GPS, amongst other features. This isn’t a smartwatch like the Samsung Galaxy Gear (which needs to connect to a smartphone and effectively acts as a second screen), or a sports fitness tracker, but rather a mixture of the two.
The Pine is currently on Kickstarter where it’s already smashed its Canadian $100,00 (£59,000) goal and is at Canadian $190,000 on its first day. The reason for such popularity? Nothing like it exists on the market right now. The Pine is essentially a complete smartphone shrunk down on to a wrist strap.
The Neptune Pine doesn’t need a smartphone to run, just a micro-SIM and you can make calls and download data directly to it using its integrated 3G or Wi-Fi connectivity. The 2.4-inch 320 x 240 QVGA display is large enough, says Pine, to use a full keyboard on the screen, and the device also offers a front VGA camera and rear 5-megapixel camera capable of 720p video, and both equipped with LED flashlights.
Pine is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 1.2GHz dual-core processor and will run Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean, meaning that it’s capable of running most modern apps, including being compatible with Google voice control. It’s even able to do multitasking, and will come with either 16 or 32GB storage options.
The battery life sounds like it could be pretty impressive too, as Neptune claims the Pine’s 810mAh lithium polymer battery will deliver 120 hours of standby time, 8 hours talk, 10 hours of music and 7 hours of browsing over Wi-Fi. Whilst this isn’t as good as some phones, it should be able to provide a full day’s charge.
Rather than limiting itself to your wrist, the Pine can be removed from the wrist strap easily for taking pictures or to be attached to a mount for shooting video. Its sports friendly abilities go further as its packing GPS, a digital compass, accelerometer, gyroscope and Bluetooth 4.0 so you can use it with heart rate monitors, cadence sensors, headphones and the like. Plus it should be IP67 water-resistant.
If you’re interested in seeing the Pine brought to life and getting your hands on one, you can visit the Kickstarter page, where it is on sale for CAD$230 (£136).