Hot on the heels of the Hublot Big Bang e comes the Frederique Constant Smartwatch Gents Vitality. It’s a hybrid: a quartz analogue timepiece with a “magic” digital display at the six. Cute! But this dog won’t hunt. Which isn’t surprising, considering its bloodline . . .
Frederique Constant’s first hybrid smartwatch debuted in 2015. The Horological Smartwatch monitored steps, tracked sleep and provided basic notifications.
The information was transferred, analyzed and controlled by a bespoke phone app, synced with the watch (via Bluetooth) by pressing the crown. The hands’ position indicated steps, sleep and the existence of a notification.
In 2016, Frederique Constant updated their Horological Smartwatch, adding a subdial and two more hands.
The Gents Classic Horological Smartwatch is still on FC’s website for $1295, available elsewhere for $495.
Not to put too fine a point on it, the updated Horological Smartwatch joins its predecessor’s journey to the scrapheap of horological history.
Enter the 2020 Frederique Constant Smartwatch Vitality. Vitality because the hybrid smartwatch includes a Philips Wearable Sensing heart rate monitor.
According to healthy.io.com, 64 beats per minute resting is 5.9% slower than the typical adult average of 73 bpm for both sexes. If FC sending a subtle message that the Smartwatch Vitality isn’t all that exciting? Or is someone in the PR department a Beatles’ fan?
Either way, the Smartwatch Vitality HR monitor is hardly a compelling sales proposition. Click here for six smart watches featuring up-to-date heart rate monitors, priced from $88 to $400.
In fact, smartwatches have had HR monitoring since Medieval times. Today’s smartwatch makers are busy adding to a wide range of health-related functions that save wearers’ lives.
Old tech in a high tech world. How can Frederique Constant even begin to sell this thing? Here’s their PR peeps’ pitch:
When pressing the crown, the dial reveals a digital display on its lower part that allows the user to access numerous information like the heart rate, the activity tracker, a second time zone and even the last five messages from your favourite apps, among other things.
What favorite apps? Among other things? What things?
There’s a second time zone and a stopwatch function. But that leaves hundreds of “things” the FC Smartwatch Vitality can’t do that an Apple Watch and any other “proper” smartwatch can. Including an always-on display.
Don’t get me wrong. I get it. The Frederique Constant Smartwatch Vitality is a classic Swiss watch first, a crap smartwatch second. Only a classic Swiss watch doesn’t become obsolete. A smartwatch – especially a hybrid – does.
Judging from Frederique Constant’s video, the Smartwatch Vitality is aimed at women. Really? There’s only one market for the Vitality with any real potential: old people intimidated by smartwatches who want a smartwatch. The same folks who buy one of those dumbed down, big number flip phones.
Frederique Constant Smartwatch Gents Vitality. introduces its latest connected watch, the Smartwatch Vitality, bursting with technology and featuring a digital dial revealed on demand. In addition to the features that were key to the success of its predecessors, the Smartwatch Vitality embraces a major innovation in the form of a new generation, integrated sensor developed by Philips Wearable Sensing, which can measure the heart rate directly from the wrist.
Back in 2015, Frederique Constant unveiled its Horological Smartwatch. More than a new timepiece, it created a new segment within the watchmaking industry. For the very first time, a Swiss manufacture had designed, developed and assembled a watch with a classic Swiss Made aesthetic (analogue dial and hands) endowed with onboard intelligence, and powered by a quartz movement supported by a connected module with two years of autonomy.
The Horological Smartwatch was followed by two other developments: the Horological Smartwatch Notify (2016) – based on the same principle, with additional notifications for calls and messages – and the Classic Hybrid Manufacture (2018), the first model to combine a Manufacture movement with intelligent functionalities. Today marks a new chapter in this great saga: the Smartwatch Vitality.
As with previous iterations, the Smartwatch Vitality represents a major breakthrough, in line with the continuous innovation championed by Frederique Constant. And yet, at first glance, none of this is visible; once again, the Manufacture has committed itself to a classically elegant and timeless looking watch, but one that harbours the ultimate connected technology… without giving anything away.
The Smartwatch Vitality has a dial with two faces – a first at Frederique Constant. The first is characterised by Roman numerals and hand-polished hour and minute hands… chic and contemporary classicism for those who appreciate sophisticated timepieces with a refined look.
When pressing the crown, the dial reveals a digital display on its lower part that allows the user to access numerous information like the heart rate, the activity tracker, a second time zone and even the last five messages from your favourite apps, among other things. The dial lets the light of the digital screen placed behind it, shine through. The latter displays connected functionalities -itself connected to the watch’s microprocessor.
Since the Smartwatch Vitality model is connected to the Frederique Constant Smartwatch App (available for iOS and Android), all the functionalities of the watch may be configured directly via the application.
The user can choose to display all the timepiece’s connected functions on the screen or configure a selection of information only. For an even more personalized usage, the order in which the information can be passed can also be determined.
To move from one function to another, all the user needs to do is push the crown: simple, intuitive, immediate. As soon as the latter has taken note of the desired information, the digital screen returns to standby mode and is once more invisible to the eye. The Smartwatch Vitality then regains its classic and elegant appearance in an instant.
The Frederique Constant Smartwatch Gents Vitality. benefits from technological advances made by the Manufacture over the past five years. It is powered by the FC-287 calibre (men’s models) and FC-286 calibre (ladies’ models). Once again, Frederique Constant is leveraging quartz technology for the user’s benefit.
The battery of the Smartwatch Vitality is rechargeable and lasts up to 7 days for the ladies’ models and 11 days for the men’s models, depending on the usage. What is more, advances in miniaturisation allowed the 36 mm diameter ladies’model to offer the same functionality as the 42 mm model.
The new Smartwatch Vitality has a wide variety of intelligent features, which details, and objectives, can be defined via the App directly.