Is Every Watch Smart?

Use your Imagination

Is every watch a Smartwatch? Well if there is one thing that you should have already taken from reading my site, it is that a great piece of lateral thinking will always get a mention here. Successful or not. And Sony have taken logical to the kind of extremes that I just could not resist looking into.



The Sony Wena, has been available in Japan, for quite some time now, and I was always curious as to why. So when news reached my ears that the innovative concept was finally to be made available on our shores , my attentions was immediately grabbed.

In recent years the role of the traditional watchmaker has been put under increasing pressure by the advent of the Sportsband, and the Smartwatch. Sales of all but the most expensive, iconic marquees, or the cheapest tat have taken a serious hit, and continue to decline. The point in the future where manufacturers of some of the mainstream wrist-watch are forced to make serious consideration to dropping the wrist-watch completely from their range, are it seems getting ever closer. This is a situation that is obviously not acceptable to even those who consider themselves to be adverse to watches.

So it is highly commendable that Sony, has come up with a compromise, even if it is a little prior to the day the last watch was ever made. Or we are even in the unenviable position of asking our loved ones to consider purchasing us an old fashioned watch from a little back-street retro shop where, like the local blacksmith, some over-weight youth wearing torn jeans, and slightly offensive tee-shirt, brightly coloured beads and dredlocked hair, is trying unsuccessfully to keep the ancient art of watchmaking alive ‘man’, or ‘dude’, or ‘bro’.

Fad or Sense.

To be totally fair to the tech companies this is not really the first foray into this market. It’s not even the first attempt to find the compromise. There was in around 2015 the Sinn strap designed for the iwatch, which actually made tonnes of sense, and a massive splash when it flopped.

I remember also premium maker Montblanc, came up with a design very similat to the Wena, and this also proved to be a bit of a white elephant in the western market. So why have Sony suddenly introduced the Wena to the markets over here? Well if you consider that the Wena, also dates back to 2015, and even Sony’s home market. Something must have happened to change their mind, and if you look at their sales reports the Wena, seems to have attracted a major boost in popularity, so maybe Sony think that opinions over here may be starting to turn.

And let’s be honest here. In this industry, being on the tip of the wave when the tide turns usually turns out to be an advantageous place to be sitting.

Confused or Genius?

Sony have a remarkably speckled background with their product launches and marketing exercises. The commentator never really has a clue if this is a serious attempt or an attempt to get rid of some excess stock. The same can be said her. Sony have taken the blunderbuss product launcher out again, and what they are up to will eventually be shown in the scatter patterns against the wall of marketing.

As we all know, this technology is still in it’s infancy and is developing at a mind blowing pace and in directions far removed from where we all thought it was going only a short few months ago. Only 6 months ago Apple, along with several other leading companies predicted that the smartband market would begin to implode this year and be all but gone in 3 years, and that the Smartwatch had only a limited amount of extra mileage in it. Now the powers that be are indicating a much longer prospect for the market. Extension which in the main is being driven by innovation.

If this was supposed to be a serious attempt to jump the queue in the market> Well I’m really not sure, because if it was we would have expected either a massive leap in capabilities, or a decent give away either in the form of a phone, or some buds or something. Are they doing that? NO.

Maybe a give away price? Erm no, not really. The band alone costs around £400 and if you want to add a Sony Wena head, they start at £100 so the package as a fully functioning watch cost over £500, which is far from cheap.

Ok, an innovative tech package then…………NO. The band released this year has basically been available in Japan in exactly the same form since 2015! In fact the functions are restricted to phone alerts, fitness tracking, and remote payment is about all you get with the addition of GPS and heart rate monitor on the Active model. So hardly ground breaking.

The Sell

So they are just trying to shift old stock then?

Well no I don’t think so, but I do doubt the wisdom of how they are selling them.

What do you do when trying to launch a new concept? I know pair it with another cool concept that, ultimately failed! Yep they are taking their selling point that you can pretty much fit any watch head to the Band and create your own watch, and pairing it with the other watch strap that you could have interchangeable faces on, the Swatch.

My only problem with this is that they seem to have done a great job in designing the 5 interchangeable watch heads that they are launching alongside the Band, and I would want all of them. Which is going to make this a mega purchase!

Coclusion

As a concept I really, really like the idea, and as I have loads of watches, but have moved now to almost always having some kind of smart device on my arm. I barely get to wear them, and I can think of about 7 watches that I miss being drawn to wear, so this is going to have to go on the must buy list for me.

Yes I am aware that at this price range it represents a big risk for both Sony, and myself, but over the years I have gotten used to people viewing me as that geeky bloke with the weird pointless tech that nobody else bought.

24 Replies to “Is Every Watch Smart?”

  1. The Sony Wena is a totally new name of smart watch for me. But when I read through the whole article I realized how many features and how efficient this smart watch can be and also for a very less price compared to all the other smart watches in the market. I’m going to consult with my friend and definitely get this one.

    Thank you for sharing this insightful and a useful review on The Sony Wena.

  2. I normally never like to wear too much on my wrists, but this year I invested in a Garmin fitness watch and I really do love it! It is such a great reminder as to how hard I push myself every day. Even on days that I do not get a workout in, I make sure to walk the 10,000 steps!

    I think it is a great investment for anyone training for a race of any sort, but also for the people who are just trying to be healthier. It is great fun to compare your times and your heart rates after each session to see your progression!

    Thanks for sharing,

    Ciara

  3. There is no doubt that Sony is really leading the way in the Smart watch innovation. I really consider £500 very expensive but I think that very soon they would be forced to make the price lower when they are pressured by competition from other companies. Before I go let me commend your writing style. I love it. 

    1. Pascal, thank you for taking the time to read and then comment on my article, it really is very appreciated.

      I agree with you that £500 is a very chunky piece of change, and like you I will be holding off waiting to see if the concept bites. If it does yes price will come down, but more importantly other manufacturers will get involved.

      Thank you also for the kind comment on my writing style.

      Rgds

      Ade

  4. I am very active and guide kayaking and hiking trips every summer. I always have to be wearing a watch to keep track of the time and to be prepared in the event of an emergency, but I have thought more and more about the benefits of a Smartwatch for fitness tracking purposes. Currently, I track my hikes and kayaks on my smartphone and I wear a Casio G-Shock on my wrist. The Wena seems interesting, but I think I’d have to wait for the price to come down to give it a try! 

    1. Thanks for taking the time to read my article and comment. I think given what you would need one for there are many more cost effective and to be honest suitable options available to you. Please take a look around my site I am sure there are a few on there that would interest you.

  5. Very interesting post. I, myself, have purchased many watches for my brothers throughout the years. However, I noticed that now the new wave consists of smart watches. However, I don’t think the Sony Wena is available in the US? I get from your post that it’s only available in Japan. I would really like to compare this watch to an iWatch. I’m just curious to know if you have been able to compare the two? 

    1. Hi Nia, Thanks for taking the time to read my article and to comment. To answer a couple of questions. I don’t believe that this can be compared to the Apple watch for 2 reasons, it is compatible with both IOS and Android and so is much more flexible than Apple, and secondly it is the band that is the tech, not the watch. It holds a normal watch face which is the main selling point (you can interchange whichever watch that you want to wear). As for availability, I do believe that it is available in the US. I only have access to the UK site but if you follow this link it should lead you in the right direction. https://amzn.to/2VdTtTs

  6. I like the title of your post, Is Every Watch Smart?, well looks like that’s the way it’s going and great!

    Nice to have on your wrist so many features. I so struggle with directions and can get lost very easily in unfamiliar territory and really it can and has become quite scary. Now I use my phone, but beware if a police officer is near by and sees you even touching that phone!  I do like the idea of interchanging watch faces on the Sony Wena. I noted that to me they seem quite big and perhaps more suitable for the male wrist, although the, Embrace 2, looked nice on the little girls wrist.

    Something a little daintier for me, yes!?

    Michele

    1. Hi Michele,

      Thank you for taking the time to read and comment on my article, it really is appreciated.

      As for your problem, yes I agree that some of the watches are rather chunkie but in the main this is a design as the majority are designed to attract the male consumer, but many have much more elegant co-models. I would say that Fitbit might be worth a look in your case. There is a retail link on my site.

      Rgds

      Ade

  7. I absolutely love this insightful article because it is full of great and lovely information. This is fascinating and intriguing to meYou did an excellent job of providing education and resources; The article was well written and easy to understand. I have heard about Sony wena before now but i have never tasted its benefits this much. 

    My question is where and how can I get this product? Can it be shipped down to africa

    1. Hi,

      Thanks for taking the time to comment on my site, it really is appreciated.

      In answer to your question, as far as I am aware there is no problem getting the item in Africa, it is available on Amazon. Obviously I cannot forward you a link to your local site as i am in the UK but I have provided a link to both the bracelet and one of the heads, these should prove to be a reasonable starting point for you.

      Bracelet; https://amzn.to/2EFODsH

      Head; https://amzn.to/2C0o2EX

      Rgds

      Ade

  8. First of all, when i saw the image of those many watches that you took, i was wondering how you got so many wrist watches together to give a snapshot (smiles). The sony wena wrist watch that you reviewed seem nice to me and a perfect one to get and i think the price is still quite affordable, and trust me any of Sony’s products are always quality and they really last long. Thanks for this informative piece.

    1. Many thanks for taking the time to read my article and then comment. Also thank you for your kind words, as for the quality of Sony products I absolutely agree.

  9. Thanks for this great informative and educative article with great expository skill!Sony is taking the leading position in the Smart watch innovation and manufacturing. However, I think £500 is very expensive for a watch!  With the growth in the industry I think they would be forced to make the price by competition from other companies, especially Chinese companies! Are they available in the USA market?Cheers

    1. Hi, thank you for taking the time to review my article. In essence I tend to agree with you regarding the price and I also hope that pressure from China will force the major manufacturers (who seem to be making their tech ever more expensive) to reduce their margins considerably.

      Rgds

      Ade

  10. I have hear some things about the watch from a friend oversea .to me .Wena is  rather unfortunate name, but Wena stands for “wear electronics naturally”. The device is a product of Sony’s Seed Acceleration Programme (SAP), which encourages staff to propose new ideas outside of Sony’s traditional areas of expertise.and is not expensive with all the features it has. I will like to own one later this year

    1. Hi, Thank you for taking the time to read my article and to comment in such an educated way. I have just been told by Sony that they are sending me a band and head for review, so if you don’t mind a model that has been reviewed I may be able to forward you one if you stick around. I tend to pass on any test models that I have been lucky enough to have been provided.

      Rgds

      Ade

  11. Hey Adrian,

    A lot of people are trying to incorporate smart watch functionality to their wrist watches. I tried to do the same, but I didn’t find any good value-for-money solution to that, so I ordered a smart watch. I consider Sony Wena expensive as well. There is a disc attached to the bottom of your wristwatch called Chronos, and also Smart Buckle, which fits to more traditional leather straps. 

    Thanks for letting us know.

    Marios 

    1. Marios,

      Thank you for taking the time to read and comment on my article, it is very appreciated.

      Rgds

      Ade

  12. HI,

    After reading your review, i have great feelings about those those branded watch. All of those watches looks beautiful and attractive. I just love coffee and black color design. I was planning to buy some Sony watches gift for my family members.I love the good battery life and water resist feature. It is amazing for look.

    Thanks for sharing this informative review.

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