There are loads of different smartwatches available these days. Everything from the Apple Watch to the Moto 360, Huawei Watch, and everything in between. The thing is, if you want a bit of a different smartwatch experience from a design standpoint, you’d be stuck paying an additional $250+ for another smartwatch with a different design. Henlen Watches, a Canadian startup, is looking to give users more choice with their smartwatch. Today they’ve launched a Kickstarter campaign featuring the world’s first interchangeable smartwatch.
Henlen differs from most current smartwatches by providing a smart core — or what they’re calling the cell — that can be used in multiple different watch designs. The smart internals can be removed from one watch and placed into another to keep the same functionality, just in a new design.
The smarts are based on Android, but with some Henlen UI tweaks, so the watch will work with both Android and iOS. The smart core features a 400×400 1.39” AMOLED display powered by a Mediatek processor and a 450 mAh battery. That smart core can be used with any of the four currently planned watch designs, available as what Henlen is calling the “Origin Series.” A couple of examples include the rugged looking Commander design (as seen in the photo above), and the more low-key Covert style (in the photo below).
This interchangeable design really offers options that aren’t available anywhere else. Sure, you can change a watch band on current smartwatches, but Henlen is offering an entirely different design from one watch body to the next. We’ve seen similar ideas in the smartphone world with Project Ara, but honestly it just makes more sense in the smartwatch form factor. Less “moving parts” so to speak, with simply a smart core, and interchangeable housing for that smart core.
Even though the Kickstarter campaign has just started, I’m left to wonder about the future of this design. Could we see housing from different companies made to work with the Henlen smart core? Will we ultimately get a Henlen cell update that would allow us to keep up with improving technology while sticking with a watch design that we like? I’m getting ahead of myself here, but the Henlen smartwatch is definitely a cool idea and I’m looking forward to seeing what they can do with it.
You can check out the Kickstarter video below, and head on over to the Kickstarter page if you’d like to back the project. Current rates allow for Early Bird discounts starting at $185, with the regular going rate on the Kickstarter at $275 for one cell core and one watch body. Let us know what you think about the Henlen smartwatch in the comment section below, or on Facebook, Google+, or Twitter.Source: Kickstarter
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