Ever get tired of pulling your iPhone out of your pocket or purse just to check a text message or see if you’ve got any new emails? What if your iPhone could connect wirelessly to your watch so you could see status alerts like this at a quick glance without having to pull out your iPhone? If this appeals to you, you’ll be excited to know that the app to manage such a watch is now available in the App Store. And then you’ll be sad to know that the watch that goes with it isn’t available quite yet.
MetaWatch is a Dallas-based company that makes smartwatches for iOS and Android smartphones. It introduced its first consumer smartwatch model, the Strata, through KickStarter, the online crowd funding platform, earlier this year. The Strata reached its minimum funding level in August and the first batch of watches are now ready to be delivered pending FCC approval at the time of this post.
Getting back to the new app, MetaWatch Manager debuted in the App Store over the weekend and will let you control what’s shown on the face of your MetaWatch smartwatch. The Strata can show you information in on-screen widgets all of the time, like the current time, date, and temperature, stock prices, and your iPhone’s battery level. Using MetaWatch Manager, you can customize and arrange these widgets and control other features, like Caller ID and text message notifications. Additional control features are planned soon to add email, Twitter, Facebook, and alarm clock notifications.
Here’s a brief demo video MetaWatch created showing MetaWatch Manager in action:
The Strata smartwatch will connect to the iPhone via Bluetooth, using a low-power mode that’s available only in the newer iOS devices with Bluetooth 4.0 radios (the iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, and iPad 3). MetaWatch Manager also requires iOS 6.0 or higher.
I backed the MetaWatch Kickstarter campaign and should receive my Strata next month and I’m really, really excited about it. I expect my Strata to be particularly useful while I’m exercising or otherwise have my hands full or occupied and my iPhone is tucked away in my purse or somewhere else out of reach. And since smartphone thefts are on the rise, I’ll also be happy to have an alternative to pulling it out of my pocket to check new text messages while I’m out and about in downtown Boston.
If you want a Strata but missed out on the Kickstarter campaign, you can sign up to hear when they’re available for sale to the public through MetaWatch’s online store.