Olio’s new smartwatch combines a premium look with cross-platform compatibility
We may be facing a torrent of smartwatch launches these days, but that has nowhere near shown us that the industry is now mature. Even now, new players are entering the game, and with a unique twist of their own. The company that almost single-handedly kickstarted the industry, Pebble, is now seen as an underdog player with a strategy largely different than that of competing manufacturers. And the newest entrant, with the Olio Model One, is yet another case of a slightly different story.
Olio isn’t probably a company you’ve heard of before, but that doesn’t mean you should discount it. It’s composed of former employees of major tech world powers, its ranks filled with individuals who have experience and seemingly know what they’re doing.
The Model One is the company’s first product, but the team is betting big on it. There are two models, both decidedly premium: a silver $595 option, and the $745 black variant. Orders will be available starting in the summer. Talking more about the watch itself, its standout feature is its ability to talk with both Android and iOS 8+ devices, something both Android Wear and Apple Watch can’t match (though Pebble can). The battery life will supposedly slightly one-up existing products, promising two days of use.
There’s a round display on the Model One, reminding us of the Moto 360 a good bit. Its LCD touchscreen will show off notifications on a time-based scale, similar to what the Pebble Time aims to do.
There’s no telling who’s going to win the smartwatch game right now, and Olio definitely doesn’t have the edge on its competitors right now, but what the company does look to have is a good-looking product and the expertise to back it.