Over the past couple years, smartwatches started to gain in popularity but seem to have tapered off a bit recently. Another option is a hybrid smartwatch which by all appearances looks like your standard wrist watch with a few smartwatch components. Our Hagen Connected Hybrid Smartwatch review takes a look at one of Skagen’s recent offerings, offering a traditional watch look with some smartwatch features.
The Skagen Hagen Connected Hybrid Smartwatch has the following features and specifications:
- Activity/Goal Tracker
- Sleep Monitor
- Automatic time/date adjustment
- Phone controls including snap photo, control music
- Battery Life: Estimated 4-6 months
- Compatibility: Android Devices 4.4+, iOS 8+ / iPhone 5 +
- Connectivity: Bluetooth Smart Enabled (4.1 Low Energy), Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n
- Case Size: 42 mm x 42 mm
- Case Thickness: 11 mm
- Water Resistant: 3 ATM
- Band Width: 20 mm
- Styles available: Titanium/Brown Leather, Silver/Black Leather, Rose Gold/Brown Leather, Steel Mesh (Silver/Silver)
What’s in the Box
- 1x Hagen Connected Smartwatch
- 1x Quick Start Guide
- 1x Warranty Manual
The Skagen Hagen Connected Hybrid Smartwatch looks almost exactly like your traditional watch. Our review unit came with the Titanium case and brown leather strap. The crown on the right side of the watch has been replaced with three push buttons, one in the middle and another both above and below it. The bezel around the watch face is pretty thin as well, and the only other thing that is noticeable over traditional smartwatches is the actual thickness of the case — which of course is only noticeable if you are looking at the watch from the side.
The watch face itself has the usual minute and hour hands, as well as hour markers, however these only go from the 11 o’clock to 7 o’clock position. A smaller dial is inset on the left-hand side, which is why there aren’t hour markers for 8 to 10 o’clock. From the 10 o’clock to 8 o’clock position (going clockwise), are the numbers 1 through 31 which are used in the watch’s date function. The smaller dial has a single hand and features 0, 25, 50, 75, and 100 indicators in the 12 o’clock to 6 o’clock positions, and A, B, C markers on the left-hand side of the circle. More on those later.
The genuine leather watch strap is attached using quick release clips, so you can easily swap out the strap for another watch strap of your choosing. The watch is also water resistant to 3 ATM or 30 meters, which means is splash/rain resistant but not suitable for showering, bathing, swimming, snorkeling, water related work, and other water activities. Still, it’s nice to have peace of mind that your watch won’t be ruined if you’re caught out in the rain or accidentally splash some water or spill something on it.
Overall the Hagen Connected Hybrid Smartwatch is a pretty classy looking watch.
Ease of Use
Setting up the Hagen Connected Hybrid Smartwatch is super simple:
- Install app
- Create account
- Turn on watch by pressing any button
- Pair by holding any button down for 5 seconds, small dial spins
- Update firmware
- Calibrate by using buttons in the app to match watch hands on your watch
- Set units for height, weight, and distance
- Set height, weight, step goal, and sleep goal
- Connect to other apps including UA Record, Up By Jawbone, Google Fit
As long as the watch is paired to your smartphone, the watch time will match local time on your phone which is a great feature for frequent travelers as you don’t need to update the time on your watch once you reach your destination.
Checking the various functions is as easy as pressing one of the three buttons, depending what function you’re after. I’ll discuss that more in the performance section below.
The watch is connected through the Skagen Connected app for Android and iOS. The app itself is pretty simple and walks you through the initial setup of the app and getting your watch connected.
Once you’re good to go, you can set up your notifications, alarms, second time zone, and adjust your step, sleep, and custom goals. Notifications allow you to choose up to six contacts to be notified if they call, text, or email you (all of which can be toggled independently so if you want only SMS notifications from one person and only emails from another, you can do so). Unfortunately, you can only choose six contacts and you are limited to text, call, or email notifications.
The software also allows you to specify units (metric or imperial), set vibration strength, and toggle push notifications.
As far as basic functionality goes, the Hagen Connected Hybrid Smartwatch works pretty well. Step count seems to be fairly accurate based on the count compared to other step trackers and smartwatches I’ve used in the past. Sleep tracking isn’t too bad either, and it picked up those afternoon weekend naps pretty frequently as well.
Pushing the top button will show you the current date by moving both hands to the appropriate number between 1-31 on the outside dial of the watch face. Pressing the middle button will switch between the second time zone and alarm time if you have either set. The main hands will move to indicate the time for the selected mode, while the small hand in the second dial will point to A, B, or C to indicate which mode you are viewing. When your alarm goes off, press the bottom button to silence it.
The bottom button can also be attached to a phone function. You can set it to either ring your phone, control your music (short press to play/pause the current track, two short presses to skip to the next track, or one long press to go back to the previous track), take a phone (short press for a single photo or long press for a photo burst), or track your custom goal. Each of these functions worked as expected, and I did get some use out of using it to control music while streaming on my phone.
The notification comes in the form of a vibration on your watch but you’ll still have to look at your phone to see what the notification was, and who it was from. It would be nice to be able to add more apps to be notified, and not be limited to six contacts. For people that use Hangouts or apps like Whatsapp or Allo instead of or alongside SMS, it would definitely be nice to get notifications from those apps as well.
As previously mentioned, the Skagen Connected app allows you to connect to other apps. I was able to easily connect it to both UA Record and Google Fit and the step counting carried over to each of those apps with no issues whenever I synced the watch to my phone. For some reason though, my sleep tracking didn’t carry over to UA Record at all.
Overall the Hagen Connected Hybrid Smartwatch performs basic smartwatch functionality fairly well, but in the case of notifications and whatnot there is definitely room for improvement.
Full smartwatches usually need to be charged up every night or every other day if you’re lucky. The Hagen Connected Hybrid Smartwatch uses a traditional watch battery and Skagen claims a 4 to 6-month battery life before you need to change batteries. While I’ve only been testing the watch out for a few weeks now, based on other hybrid smartwatches I’ve tested I don’t see why it shouldn’t last that long based on the number of notifications you get on a daily basis.
Starting at $195USD, our review unit was the most costly of the three current choices, coming in with an MSRP of $215USD. While the pricing puts it on the higher end of Skagen’s watch line, it is in range with some of the other non-hybrid models they sell. The solid construction and basic smartwatch functionality definitely offer value for your money.
If you’re not a fan of the full smartwatch option and want something a little more traditional with very basic smartwatch functions, the Skagen Hagen Connected Hybrid Smartwatch should definitely be on your consideration list. While it’s a little light on the smartwatch functions, it’s not unthinkable that they’ll get better with future firmware and software updates.