We have been closely following Qualcomm's Toq smartwatch ever since the announcement back at the Qualcomm Uplinq conference in September. This watch is Qualcomm's attempt to enable the latest in their own technologies in a unique formfactor that can be easily used as a reference platform for watch makers to make new and interesting smart watches. The current landscape is fairly thin and many of the watches lack any really unique technologies. We got a chance to play with the Toq during UPLINQ and have a video for you below with our first impressions.
Now, getting to the actual device's availability and pricing. Qualcomm has announced that the Toq will be available on December 2nd also known as Cyber Monday. Meaning that if you really want to put down the $349 for their smartwatch you can do it now to guarantee one for yourself. Because this is a limited edition device, there is a chance that you may never seen a watch like it ever again. This is Qualcomm's proof of concept and they are simply doing this to help spur some creativity and help watch makers and gadget makers to understand what their tech can do.
With wireless charging and a Mirasol display, Qualcomm already solves two of the biggest problems that many smartwatches have today. Either their display sucks in terms of image quality, or the display is too power hungry, Qualcomm's Mirasol sets out to solve this problem and simultaneously keep Qualcomm's display business going. I really hope that this watch will help breath a new life into Mirasol so that they can develop the 2nd generation and really give us some sweet MEMS display tech that can do 30 FPS video as well as low refresh rate display. Not just that, but it also looks better in direct sunlight than virtually all forms of display available on the market today, which significantly reduces the amount of backlight needed during the daytime.
The second smartwatch problem that they solve is the charging one. I absolutely hate the fact that almost all smartwatches have some sort of proprietary cabling that requires you to connect the watch in a weird way in order to charge it. The Sony Smartwatch was the worst of the bunch, but even the pebble still requires a proprietary magnetic USB cable to charge. The Toq solves this problem by going wireless and enabling the Toq to charge wirelessly through the carrying case of the Toq. In theory this is the perfect solution for all smartwatches and we will see how it gets put to use in practice when we get ours in the coming weeks.
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