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Timex set to join smartwatch fray with US$399 Ironman One

Matt Hamblen | Aug. 7, 2014
Price includes one year of AT&T data service to eliminate need for cell phone connection; available in November.

timex onegps plus
Timex's One GPS+ smartwatch.

Timex will ship its Ironman One GPS+ smartwatch in November, starting at $399. The company is already taking orders at its Web site.

The Timex smartwatch price tag includes one year of mobile data service from AT&T, which means it can operate for data independent of a cell phone.

Phone-free text messaging and uploading of fitness performance data is included, according to online specs at the Timex site. Voice calling is not included.

Many smartwatches today, including the Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo from Samsung, as well Android Gear devices, rely upon Bluetooth connections to a smartphone to access most applications. The Gear 2 includes a microphone for making calls and voice commands.

Even though it doesn't need a cell phone connection, the Timex device does include Bluetooth for functions such as streaming music (with 4GB of storage) to a Bluetooth-compatible headset.

The $399 model comes with GPS fitness tracking and a touchscreen display, while a $450 version adds a Bluetooth-ready heart monitor that is worn on the chest. Some of Samsung's smartwatches rely on a heart rate monitor on the back side of the watch that uses a laser light focused on the wrist. Some reviewers have found those readings to be inconsistent.

Timex said the mobile data service from AT&T will come with features that vary by market.

The Qualcomm Mirasol touchscreen on the device is advertised as always-on and capable of being read in sunlight. The battery provides eights hours of power in cellular-connected mode or four hours when music is also played.

Timex hasn't disclosed what operating system will run the smartwatch.

The Ironman One will rely on cloud-based services from Synchronoss, which also developed the watche's mobile applications and Web portal.


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