The Gadgets Page

August 25, 2015

Swatch CEO Is Baffled By The Apple Watch

Filed under: Wearable Tech — Laura Moncur @ 2:55 pm

Swatch CEO Nick Hayek is baffled by the Apple Watch from The Gadgets PageQuote in this article, «Die Alleskönner fressen zu viel Strom» – Wirtschaft –, Nick Hayek, the CEO of Swatch is baffled by the Apple Watch. I had to rely on this article for the translation:

It’s quite obvious that he doesn’t quite understand what the Apple Watch does and doesn’t do and overestimates the “burden” of charging one every day.

The Apple watch is an interesting toy, but not a revolution. These devices, which all eat so much power that they last no longer than 24 hours without needing to be plugged in. In addition, the user immediately loses control of their data. I personally don’t want my blood pressure and blood sugar values stored in the cloud, or on servers in Silicon Valley.

The Apple Watch doesn’t track blood pressure or blood sugar on its own. He seems to be confused. He also said that he wouldn’t create a fitness watch.

As a watch producer, I cannot accept the responsibility of whether my device warns a customer in time before a heart attack.

It amazes me that this man thinks he has the ability to talk about a product he obviously knows nothing about. If we want to be honest, let’s about we talk about the latest Swatch collection. Let’s talk about how “useful” their watches might be.

Swatch Miami Peach Flamingos from The Gadgets PageThere is a Swatch that’s black that tells you the time. There’s one that’s blue that tells you the time. There’s one that is red, green and yellow. Wait! Here’s one that’s a little more useful: it’s pink with flamingos and it tells the time. The most complications you will get are date, day of the week, and stopwatch. If you want to talk about an “interesting toy,” all of Swatch’s watches have been demoted to that status, merely because all they do is tell time. When I have SO much connectivity on my wrist, the fact that I have to charge the watch on my nightstand is insignificant.

The thing that bothers me is that Swatch had a head start. They had a head start on easily changeable bands. They had a head start on watches for fashion instead of lifelong timepieces. They even had a head start on the smartwatch category. Instead of advancing and making their products better, they stagnated and abandoned every good idea.

All of this, coming from a HUGE Swatch fan. I have an immense collection of Swatches:

Swatch Touch Zero from The Gadgets PageI have been a fan for almost thirty years and I feel betrayed by them. I WANTED a smart watch from Swatch, but what they gave me is laughable, even if the battery lasts six months.

When I saw that monstrosity, I wanted to swat Nick Hayek on the nose like a dog who has just piddled on the floor. I have been faithful to this company for thirty years and THIS is what they give me?!

It all reminds me of when Steve Ballmer said that Apple had no chance in the smartphone market. Nick Hayek is someone who should know better. He is someone who should have teamed up with Apple TEN years ago. Instead, he is an outsider in his own industry that is changing so quickly that he honestly can’t keep up with it.

March 5, 2015

NO, NO! Bad Swatch!! Try Again!

Filed under: Watches — Laura Moncur @ 12:33 pm

Swatch Touch Zero from The Gadgets PageSwatch made an announcement a few weeks ago saying that they were going to enter the wearable tech market. THIS is what they are releasing.

New Swatch Touch Zero One combines design & cool new Beach Volley functions for players and fans – Step Counter, Power Hits and Power Claps.

So basically, they are giving us an ugly Fitbit Charge.

I am a HUGE fan of Swatch, as I have said in the past, but they have been WASTING their time. Almost TEN years ago, I lamented about the pathetic choice in digital watches and they are STILL blowing it.

Let’s stack it up to my “I Hate The Watch Designers of the World” List: (Continue Reading…)

February 5, 2015

Sorry, Swatch. Too Little. Too Late.

Filed under: Watches — Laura Moncur @ 3:45 pm

Sir Swatch from The Gadgets PageThis article about The Swatch Group’s announcement to release a smart watch to compete with the Apple Watch just makes my blood BOIL.

I am a HUGE Swatch fan. I have a ton of Swatch watches and a huge site dedicated to them:

Yet, when that Apple Watch is available for pre-order, I am going to be RIGHT there, refreshing my computer over and over until I can get mine. I have been screaming into the wind for nearly a DECADE about the incredible suckitude of high-end watches.

They did not listen to me TEN years ago when I complained about their watches. They didn’t try to design something prettier than a Casio or more functional than a watch with ONE complication.

Sorry, Swatch. Too little. Too Late.

March 19, 2010

Swatch Colour Codes

Filed under: Watches — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

It’s no secret that I’m a big fan of Swatch Watches. I’ve written about them many times (even when I’m not writing about watches):

I originally fell in love with Swatch during the Eighties, so you can imagine my delight when the newest collection for Spring 2010 harkens back to those days. Here’s a commercial showing them off.

Benneton Ad EightiesThe models in this commercial look a lot like an old Benneton advert. The photo to the right was the closest I could find in my old advertisement collections. I didn’t realize how much I missed that sort of experimentation and daring with makeup and color until I saw it again in these Swatch ads. After years of bland neutrals, these exciting colors are enough to make me want to experiment with makeup again!

I heard about these Swatches back in February and I immediately wanted them:

I had to wait a full month before I was able to get my butt to Vegas and buy as many as I had saved up money for. Here are some photos after the break: (Continue Reading…)

June 17, 2009

Swatch Mobile Phone

Filed under: PDAs and Phones — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

A special thank you to eyeseenicee for uploading these scans of the Swatch mobile phone.

Swatch Mobile Phone by eyeseenicee from Flickr

Long before Nokia started allowing us to customize our phones, Swatch offered cell phones in a wide variety of colors.

Swatch Mobile Phone by eyeseenicee from Flickr

Based on these features, it must have been available in the early Nineties.

Swatch Mobile Phone by eyeseenicee from Flickr

I never heard about these phones when they were available. Back then, I wanted the Motorola StarTac. I don’t think these would have attracted me. They look awesome to me now.

March 18, 2009

How To Set the Swatch Luar Moon Phase Watch

Filed under: Watches — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

How To Set the Swatch Luar Moon Phase Watch by LauraMoncur from FlickrSometimes I realize that I’m writing an entry that only a SMALL number of people on the planet have any interest in, but when I’m one of those people, it makes it worth it to me. Last week, I finally got my Luar Swatch from Squiggly. The Luar is a VERY rare watch that is only sold the Swatch Luxury Store on the Via Della Spiga in Milano and on the Place Vendome in Paris. It is also the first Swatch with a moon phase.

Setting it was a bitch…

Since it keeps track of day of the week, month, date, time and moon phase, you can understand why it might be difficult to set a watch like this with only one crown. I scanned in the directions, but even with their help, it took Mike and I about ten minutes to figure out how to set the watch.

How To Set the Swatch Luar Moon Phase Watch by LauraMoncur from Flickr

The crown has three positions. The A position is when it’s pushed all the way in. You can’t set anything in this position. The C position is when it’s pulled all the way out. The B position is the click between all the way in and all the way out. My biggest problem is that I read the directions to mean that there were FOUR positions. I didn’t realize A was all the way in. I thought there were three pulled out positions.

To set the day of the week (Sun, Mon, etc.):

Pull the crown all the way out (position C) and turn the time to just after midnight. The setting will click to the next day. To advance it an additional day, you don’t have to turn the hands another twenty four hours. You can turn the hands backward to before midnight (you will see the day of the week setting click a little, but not go backwards), then turn the hands past midnight again.

I recommend setting the day of the week setting to YESTERDAY. You’ll see why later.

To set the date:

How To Set the Swatch Luar Moon Phase Watch by LauraMoncur from FlickrPull the crown one click out (position B) and turn the crown away from you (clockwise). This will advance the day indicator (it looks like a second hand). To set the month, you have to keep turning until you get past an entire year. There is no separate way to set the month. To make the correct month show, you must keep turning the crown past every day of the year until you get to the correct day.

I recommend setting the date to YESTERDAY. I’ll explain why later.

To set the moon phase:

Pull the crown one click out (position B) and turn the crown toward you (counter clockwise). To find out what phase the moon is currently in, here are a couple of websites:

Once again, set it to the moon phase for YESTERDAY.

To set the time:

Pull the crown all the way out (position C) and turn the crown either away or towards you to set the time. Keep turning the time away from you (clockwise) until you get past midnight. Once you get past midnight, ALL the settings should change (day of the week, date and moon phase). Now you KNOW you’re on today’s date at just after midnight. Set the correct time and your Luar watch is ready to go!


How To Set the Swatch Luar Moon Phase Watch by LauraMoncur from FlickrMany of the Swatch enthusiasts were disappointed that the Luar is a battery powered watch instead of an automatic. With a price tag of approximately $450, it’s a little much to expect an automatic with a real moon phase. I’ve talked at length about what I desire in a watch here:

My desires have changed a lot since that day nearly four years ago when I went looking for the perfect watch. I still haven’t found it, but the Luar was able to do more than any other beautiful watch. Here were my criteria and how the Luar stands up to it:

How To Set the Swatch Luar Moon Phase Watch by LauraMoncur from Flickr

  • A beautiful watch: The Luar is definitely beautiful. It’s the moon phase and the simplicity of one crown that make the Luar look so good to me.
  • Women’s watch: The Luar is too big for my wrist. It’s a man’s watch, but I’ve given up on having a women’s watch with a day/date/month feature. If I ever find one, I’ll let you know.
  • Digital: I had to give up digital. NO ONE makes beautiful digital watches. I’ll just have to finally learn how to tell time with an analog watch.
  • Metal case and band: The Luar has that.
  • Time and Date on the display at the same time: This is one of the best features of the Luar.
  • Stopwatch: There is no stopwatch (chronograph), but I run with my iPod and Nike+ all the time now. Not only does it log my workout times, but it uploads them to my computer automatically. I don’t need a stopwatch on my wrist anymore.
  • Countdown Timer: There is no countdown timer, but my iPhone has taken the place of my need for one on my wrist.
  • Light: There is no light, but the hands are glow in the dark. That doesn’t help me at two in the morning when the glow has worn off, however.
  • Dual Time: I had to give this up as well.

So, with a rating of three features out of nine desires, the Luar looks like it just doesn’t stack up, but it’s the ONLY watch that has come this close. Keep trying, watch designers of the world. You just might make a watch specifically for me.

Update 04-29-13: Thank goodness I wrote this entry. The battery finally died on my watch and I had to reset it. The whole process was MUCH easier this time because of what I had written. On another note, I still ADORE this watch, but I have gone blind and can’t read the month or day of the week without reading glasses, so it’s less useful to me than some other watches I have. Doesn’t stop me from wearing it, though. If I REALLY need to know that info, I can pull out my phone.

June 17, 2008

The Swatch Irony Body and Soul

Filed under: Watches — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

Swatch Irony Body and SoulI am a big fan of Swatch, so I’m happy to learn that they are releasing a new mechanical watch. This one has a window on both the front and back so you can see the inner workings.

Say hello to the Swatch Irony Automatic “Body and Soul”. It’s a skeletonized mechanical watch where both front and back are clear to allow an unobstructed view of the ticking heart inside.

It only shows the time (no date, month or day of the week), but it’s a mechanical watch for less than 200 bucks.

August 9, 2007

Swatch Puzzle Motion Watches

Filed under: Watches — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

As a teenager, my favorite watches were made by Swatch. I could barely tell time on them, but they were so cool, I owned several of them. I STILL own them today and most of them are still running. That’s how well-made they were.

Swatch is still ticking along. They just released a new line of watches called Puzzle Motion. They are like a kaleidescope of color moving on your wrist.

Here are their videos showing how the watches look:

Click here to see the video

Embed this video on your websiteDownload this video for your iPod

If I have to have a watch that doesn’t do anything but tell time, at least it should show me pretty pictures.

Here is a video of the Swatch Puzzle watch in person:

Retro Swatch Ads after the break: (Continue Reading…)

September 23, 2015

Apple Watch Saves Teen’s Life

Filed under: Wearable Tech — Laura Moncur @ 7:37 am

Paul Houle Jr. Saved By His Apple Watch from The Gadgets PageRemember when the CEO of Swatch mocked Apple for being willing to have a heart rate function on their Apple Watch?

As a watch producer, I cannot accept the responsibility of whether my device warns a customer in time before a heart attack.

He’s probably singing a different tune now that an Apple Watch has saved the life of a teen from Massachusetts:

A 17-year-old Tabor Academy senior was at football practice when something felt off. “I had pain in my chest and my back whenever I took some deep breaths,” said Paul Houle Jr. He would have chalked it up to a hot day on the gridiron. But his Apple Watch alerted him to something serious.

“After practice I went and took a nap, my heart rate was still at 145.” The Apple Watch takes your resting heart rate about every minute or so. Houle knew there was a problem when his resting heart rate was more than double his average. He went to the hospital, where he learned he had heart, liver and kidney failure, which could have been fatal if not for his watch.

“If my Apple Watch hadn’t shown me it was 145, I would have done nothing about it.” Houle’s dad is grateful his son is healthy. His dad didn’t want to buy the Apple Watch, but after his son’s ordeal, he went out Saturday and purchased one for his wife and himself. Houle can’t play football just yet, but he has something else to look forward to – an internship next summer with Apple.

I am so grateful for my Apple Watch because it has made my life easier in so many ways, but this sort of story makes that little piece of technology appear to be miraculous.

May 17, 2015

One Month with my Apple Watch

Filed under: Watches — Laura Moncur @ 11:05 am

One Month with my Apple Watch from the Gadgets PageIt has been almost one month since I received my Apple Watch and I would like to give an update. I’ve made no qualms about how disappointed I have been with the watch designers of the world. Nearly ten years ago, I wrote an entry listing the things I wanted.

Here is what I wanted:

  • A beautiful watch
  • Women’s watch
  • Digital
  • Metal case and band
  • Time and Date on the display at the same time
  • Stopwatch
  • Countdown Timer
  • Light
  • I would also like Dual Time, but I’m willing to give that up

The Apple Watch has given me all that I asked for (except I opted for the silicone band and am still waiting for third party aluminum bands to make it onto the market). In addition to that, I have had added functionality that I never knew that I would like.

Text Messaging

I adore the messaging features on the Apple Watch. I love that I can easily see my texts and easily answer them. The dictation on the watch is amazing and I hardly ever have to cancel and start over. The silly messaging that only works between Apple Watches hasn’t been useful, but the text messaging has.

Answer the phone

I can LITERALLY answer my phone on my watch. Two days ago, I was sitting outside, reading, and my watch went off saying I had a call. My phone was in the house and I would have never made it in time, but I just answered with my watch and had an entire conversation. It was a phone call that I would have definitely missed had I not had my Apple Watch. I don’t want to talk into my watch all the time like Dick Tracy, but I do enjoy the option when I’m separated from my phone.

Time to stand

One Month with my Apple Watch from the Gadgets PageI LOVE the reminders telling me to stand. I know some people have complained about them, but my job is VERY sedentary. I NEED something to remind me to walk around for a bit so all the blood in my body doesn’t pool in my butt. In the past, I used to have a reminder on my computer, but I would just dismiss it and keep working. On the Apple Watch, there is a circle dedicated to standing every hour. I get a tiny reward every time I do it. Somehow, the goal of closing in that circle is enough to get me to get out of my chair every hour. It’s amazing that it works, but I have been faithfully walking around a little bit every hour.

I LOVE my Apple Watch

All I wanted when I bought the Apple Watch was that customizable watch face that would have whatever I wanted on it. I got that and so much more that other things don’t seem important. That blue watch band? I don’t care what color it is as long as I have this watch. That lack of a metal band? I don’t care as long as I have this watch. I love the fact that I don’t need to wear TWO watches (i.e. a Swatch and a FitBit) anymore. I love the extra features that I didn’t even know I needed. I love my Apple Watch just as much as I love my iPhone.

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