CooKoo Watch, a connected wrist alert system.
From humble beginnings on KickStarter to one of the most talked about devices on display at CES, the CooKoo Watch from ConnectedDevice Ltd. is a hit. With an ever-growing market of bluetooth enabled devices it is getting harder for a peripheral device to stand out. There are however very few devices that connect to your mobile device that alert you to incoming texts, calendar reminders, and email updates. The CooKoo does this and much more, with intent to also expand on the features it comes with out of the box.
The face of he watch can show you what info is coming to your phone without needing to pull your phone out every time if chirps or vibrates. The current features allow you to know when a Facebook message comes in, text, email, incoming call, missed call, calendar reminders and even low battery warnings. But the uses of the phone do not stop there. Through the four buttons on the side of the dial you can trigger the camera feature on the phone while it is mounted to a tripod or standing on a surface so you don’t need someone to take pictures for you. Using the drop pin feature you can tag your current location on Maps, or with a long press of the same button you can check in on Facebook from your wrist without taking your phone from your pocket/purse.
On top of all the usable features the phone also looks pretty sleek, however it is on the heavy side as far as watches go. The phone comes in some of the most unusual packaging I have seen for any product. The packaging is also reusable. To compliment the bird theme the CooKoo watch comes in it’s very own plastic and composite bird house. Once the watch and the stand is removed from the packaging you are given a vinyl decal that covers a small hole in the bottom and you are left with a real usable bird house. Think of it as recycling to a new degree. Also on the environment friendly side, the battery life on this watch is pretty impressive for everything it does. There are 2 different systems that have their own battery for the watch functions and for the bluetooth notifications as well. The expected battery life is rated at 3 years.
With a classic yet attractive analog watch face, the CooKoo does not have a digital option so be prepared to go old school big hand little hand style. Coming in six different colors including a special edition early adopter KickStarter color there are enough options to make most people happy. The majority of the watch colors are $129 while the KickStarter green is available for a premium of $249, which is a hefty bump in price from the original backing price $50 for the first limited few that jumped on board to fund the project. For an additional $39 you can add the connected key chain which allows you to trigger your phone camera, locate your keys with your phone, locate your phone with your keys, and tell you if you left your phone behind with a proximity warning.
The free app had already made its way to the iTunes store prior to the phones release, and displays a number of not yet assigned radio buttons for things to come. You also have the ability to name your phone and set a personalized default photo as well. You can manually set your warnings and which notifications you want to receive as well as test out each to see what it both sounds and feels like as the watch has a vibrate function also.
After the first week with the Connected CooKoo watch several things are evident. First and foremost, the watch works both as a watch, and for all the features it boasts from the start. And from looking at the app it is obvious there are more features to come including additional button mapping options based on button press and length of the button press. The watch feels good and the materials are sturdy. It can withstand some significant bangs and scrapes with no noticeable wear or damage. This watch is as heavy as it is sturdy.
Everyone that has had an opportunity to see what the CooKoo watch can do has been either impressed or bored with the lack of necessity that this product has. It does not fill a specific need/void, but is more of a luxury peripheral item that is functional and a conversation piece. To the average person it appears every bit a normal watch until it starts to Coo and spout off notifications. If you receive an abundance of notifications during the day such as texts or emails the battery life will most likely not last the full 3 years and will quickly begin to bother the wearer.
For more information you can also go back and listen to our interview with the CooKoo Watch creator Peter Hauser one of our earliest interviews for the New Geeks on the Block segment.