Is a smartwatch that allows for private phone conversations the holy grail of wearable devices? For many enthusiasts, the answer is yes, and the Hot Watch advertises exactly that capability: You can have a phone call through the ePaper watch but nobody else will hear the conversation.
The “secret sauce” is a patent pending technology called Hands On Talk (HOT), which bounces sound waves from the watch to your ear. How does it work? A speaker in the watch reportedly beams the sound off of your cupped hand, which you place near your ear.
Think of it like holding an invisible phone to your head. Here’s a video demonstration along with many more details on the watch’s development.
Although you can make and receive phone calls with the Hot Watch, it doesn’t require a separate phone plan because the phone functions are handled by your smartphone: The watch pairs with your handset over Bluetooth. In some sense, then, the wearable gadget is a unique Bluetooth hands-free device. But it also has other functions expected from a smartwatch: email notifications, texts, social networking support, weather and more.
The Hot Watch is currently a Kickstarter project but it has already blown through its minimum funding goal of $150,000 with 35 days left. At last check, the project topped $210,000. A pledge of $119 will secure your own Hot Watch, which will work with any handset that supports Bluetooth connectivity.