Microsoft, like other major tech companies, is investing heavily into wearable computing. Steve Ballmer said just as much last week when he announced a major restructuring at the company. Now a new report has emerged with additional details regarding Microsoft’s second attempt at a smart watch.
AmongTech is reporting that its sources within Microsoft have said that the company already has prototypes of the new smart watch up and running. It will reportedly be available in multiple colors and have removable wrist bands. It will also be made out of Oxynitride Aluminum – a type of aluminum that is 80 percent transparent while remaining harder than glass.
What’s more interesting than the hardware, however, is the software powering it. The sources said that the smart watch will be running a modified version of Windows 8 with an emphasis on cloud storage via SkyDrive. What this means is that Microsoft’s smart watch won’t need to be tethered to a smartphone to work. It will deliver information to its user via a built-in 4G LTE radio antenna. Of course, this doesn’t mean that Microsoft will be ditching smartphone interactivity. The report says that the smart watch can connect with phones for push notifications and other functions.
This is far more information than we’ve ever previously had, but there are still a lot of unanswered questions regarding Microsoft’s smart watch strategy. Will it only work with other Windows devices or will Microsoft allow it to integrate with Android/iOS devices? What features of Windows 8 will make it to the smart watch? How does it fit into Microsoft’s new strategy of a single entity committed to Windows?
We’ll probably learn all of this and more in the coming months as Microsoft opens up about its smart watch plans. The hardware won’t launch until 2014, but Microsoft may want to show something this year if Apple or Samsung forces their hand.