The musician’s rookie attempt at cracking a tech niche that remains hard to seize even for Apple and Samsung is to be taken very seriously, thanks to a fashionable design and, most importantly, standalone voice call support.
Unlike his predictable, bland, second-rate pop music, Will.i.am’s technology strides look original, thought-through and far less embarrassing than all those Nicki Minaj, Britney Spears and Justin Bieber collaborations.
If you will, the Puls (read pulse) is for the smart wearable market what “Where Is the Love?” was for the art world more than a decade ago. A coup out of nowhere, whose freshness and strong social message are bound to cause a stir.
Okay, maybe the Puls doesn’t send a distinct social message, aside from demonstrating not all tech-involved celebrities are as useless as Lenovo “product engineer” Ashton Kutcher. But it does shed an interesting light on Samsung, Apple and everyone else’s struggles to come up with a really high-end smartwatch.
Oops, did I slip the “s” word? Will doesn’t like to call it that way, instead promoting it as a smart cuff, yes, cuff with an ability to make and receive phone calls solo. Speaking of, the Puls apparently offers independent 3G connectivity on AT&T for future US buyers, and O2 in the UK.
Ah, so we’re not the only ones seeing the potential here. Which isn’t surprising in the slightest, since this smartwatch, sorry, smart cuff packs a Snapdragon processor, 1 generous gig of RAM and no less than 16 GB internal storage.
Yes, that’s clearly not a smartwatch, it’s a wearable smartphone. With all kinds of applications and use cases, fitness tracking, web browsing and social networking included. Music playing too, of course, and there are powerful speakers housed in the cuff’s lower part to “Pump It” and “get retarded”.
The sole minor imperfection we can put a finger on at the moment is the square display, albeit the curviness that leads all the way to the watch band is quite a unique and nice aesthetical touch, which should help the Puls appeal to fashionistas.
Oh, and believe it or not, Will.i.am even designed a number of special software functions and apps to go with the modified pre-loaded Android, most notably a Siri clone counterpart dubbed AneedA. Silly name aside, this thing should interpret speech and allow you to text and email without touching the device.
Sounds groundbreaking… and expensive, which is why we’ll hold off final judgment until seeing the Puls officially priced and up for grabs.