Is This the Future of Watchmaking? Hyetis Crossbow with a 41 MP Camera
Do you remember the Warp HMS Automatic from the brand AK Genève? That was a watch that can only be described as a very strange looking ‘time-telling machine”. With such a name and looks (click here) you can imagine the reference to Star Trek, warp speed and being beamed up. Arny Kapshitzer was the man behind AK Genève and he’s about to launch sometime entirely different: the Hyetis Crossbow, the first mechanical wrist watch a.k.a. smart watch with a 41MP camera!
Kidding? No kidding! The Crossbow is a hybrid, because the watch-part runs on an Swiss mechanical automatically wound movement, while the rest of the watch is a smart watch with possibilities to connect to all kind of devices. Besides the connectivity possibilities, the Crossbow also features a 41 MegaPixel camera and several environmental sensors, e.g. altimeter, light meter, microphone, thermometer, barometer.
The case reminds of the 1970’s bullhead chronographs with the push buttons and crown not on the side of the case, but at the top. With the Crossbow the pushers and crown have been replaced by the aforementioned hi-resolution camera, microphone and other sensors, while the traditional crown for adjusting and winding the watch, has been positioned at the 6 o’clock position.
The 46 mm large case is made in titanium, which is of course a very light-weight material. The sapphire crystal in the front is surrounded by a circular touch sensitive bezel. Instead of the usual dial the crossbow is equipped with a high resolution color display that shows all kind of information, from incoming emails, the local weather, the interactions with all your Facebook friends and everything else that you want it to display. As long as there’s a connection to other devices like your smartphone.
Since the Crossbow is designed to be water resistant to a depth pf 250 meters, we can image it can record the most brilliant hi-res underwater movies. And that while wearing it on your wrist! Or maybe record an entire film with it, because it is also equipped with a hi-res microphone with selective noise suppression. So it becomes much more than a mechanical watch, and even much more than a smart watch.
From concept to launch….
In a few days a special series of the Crossbow watch will be available. A collector’s edition limited to 500 pieces that will be available for $ 1,200 USD and only directly through the Hyetis website (click here). These pre-production models will have an exclusive design and finish and delivery is scheduled for the end of this year.
While the Hyetis Crossbow looks totaly different than the mock-up images we’ve seen from Apple’s iWatch (it’s much bigger!) I must admit that the description of all functions and especially the camera and microphone are very intriguing! We’ll be following (and keeping you posted) on what Anry Kapshitzer has up his sleeve.
I like the combination of a mechanical watch with a digital color screen watch face. Whether the combo will work in practice depends on battery time and the visibility of the watch face in sunlight. Having the camera on board makes it too geeky, though.