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Summary:

Once relegated to early adopters, smart watches are slowly filtering their way into the view of mainstream shoppers. Case in point: Casio’s new GShock connects to an iPhone for call or email notifications and can be found at Macy’s, Bloomingdales and Nordstrom for $180.

Casio smart watch and iPhone

This holiday season may be the first where you can walk into your local mall and find a smart watch in a mainstream store. Casio’s G-Shock GB6900AA, a $180 digital watch with Bluetooth 4.0, will adorn retail shelves in select Macy’s, Bloomingdales and Nordstrom stores, starting this month.

Casio smart watchCasio’s GB6900AA watch, spotted by Engadget, wirelessly connects to Apple’s iPhone 4S and 5 smartphones, which both support the Bluetooth 4.0 Low Energy standard.  Once paired and connected, it receives alerts for incoming calls and emails. The watch can also sync the time with an iPhone and alert the wearer if they move beyond the wireless range of their iPhone, in case the handset is left behind. Double-tapping the watch face dismisses an alert.

In the product’s press release, Casio says the watch battery lasts for two years, assuming 12 hours of wireless connectivity per day. That’s a big plus as some of the early smart watches require recharging every few days or weeks. Some of that battery savings could be coming from limited functionality, however: The GB6900AA simply notifies the user of incoming calls or emails; it doesn’t provide caller ID or message details.

For many consumers, this will be the first time they see a connected watch. Geeks like me have a seen a number of them on Kickstarter, tested some out in the past or actually one one: I still wear the MotoACTV I bought this year. Talk about smart watches to the average consumer, however, and they’d likely say they never heard of them. Casio’s adoption of such technologies, combined with its brand recognition, should raise awareness more than any independent smart watch maker could.

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  1. The 80s called and want their digital watch design back.

    That is one of the ugliest watches I’ve ever seen. No matter how impressive the features are, I would never consider wearing it. Surely Casio can do better than this?

    1. I agree, more screen and smaller surround. I don’t need a huge chunk of metal on wrist to compensate.

  2. I think that whoever buys the rights to the last gen iPod Nano and modifies it for use as a watch will do well. (intergrated for iOS and Android)

  3. Kevin, can this watch do anything more such as measure a person’s pulse or body temperature? It would be great if there was health / medical component to it (then it would be really worth wearing since it would act as a human body sensor too).

    1. Unfortunately, the watch has no sensors to do such things, Eddie. :(

  4. I don’t care if it’s round and ugly but the display is way too cluttered. It would be better to be able to use the full screen for things like two or three lines of email display, or full screen time display for the aging populace.

  5. its the same design watch that they sell millions of each year…..get with the times McBeese

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