montblanc

Luxury brand Montblanc has announced its first foray into the booming wearables market with the ‘e-Strap’. The German company, which is known for making fine pens, watches and other jewelry, hopes the accessory will allow traditional mechanical watches and wearable tech to co-exist.

The e-Strap is an Italian leather watch band that features an embedded tracker with a tiny 0.9-inch monochromatic OLED touchscreen display (128×36). That display is capable of showing activity-tracking data and a variety of push notifications from a connected iPhone, or similar device.

Supported notifications include e-mails, text messages, incoming calls, reminders and social media updates, which are all signaled by a light vibration on the wrist. And as for activity-tracking, the band can record number of steps taken per day, calories burnt, as well as your distance traveled.

montblanc 1

Rounding out the e-Strap’s features are a remote control, which you can use to trigger your smartphone’s camera shutter or control your music, and a Find-Me function that will locate the watch or phone within 30 meters. Montblanc says the accessory should last for 5 days on a complete charge.

While not particularly groundbreaking, the e-Strap does serve as the first entry into the wearables space by a luxury company. It’s also a unique approach to the concept, as Montblanc says it plans to sell the band both attached to its Timewalker Urban Speed watches and as a standalone strap.

The Timewalker Urban Speed with e-Strap will be available soon, starting at 2,990 Euros ($3,600 USD), and the standalone e-Strap will sell for about 250 Euros. Timex, Fossil and TAG Heuer are also expected to join the wearables fray this year, and of course the Apple Watch is nearing launch.

[Hodinkee]

  • Good idea, looks nice as them $100 fossil wrist watches, but (Crazily Overpriced)^2

    • Bart.

      Dude, It’s a Mont Blanc, those are luxury items, just like Omega, Rolex, Jaquet Droz, …

      Because it looks the same it doesn’t mean the quality and materials are the same.

      • So, what materials are they made out of that distinguish them enough to justify the price tag, silver/gold? With regards to quality, quality in what sense exactly, would it last forever on a single battery? A $100 fossil watch I got as a gift looks similar (with different color and additional digital clock), and battery lasted for 3 years before needing replacement…

      • Paresh Bhatia

        it dose not matter what is the price tag but matter is would you pay it ? if you think its too much then its your choice to buy Mont Blanc or Fossil

      • Yeah it’s my choice, and I’m calling it (Crazily Overpriced)^2…money is no problem, but price tag better be justified with features/versatility/quality compared to the competition, otherwise, just an outright ripoff, and I hate ripoffs with a passion.

      • peace:V

        Just let u know that all luxury watches like the Montblanc we got here are automatic watches, they don’t need battery and they can last for generations.

      • Really nice technology. However, considering a battery replacement for a $100 fossil watch costs ~$10 for another 3 years of use, would have to pass it down through the family three for ~300 years befire it starts paying for itself, by then, there will have been 100s of generations of SmartWatches with significantly much more functionality…still (Crazily Overpriced)^2 in my book.

        Kindly share any other special technology that justifies the price tag, if you know any.

      • peace:V

        We not just talking about the smartband that come with the watch. While the band function as smartwatch like other smartwatches on the market and it does need battery to run. The smartband cost around $400 for whom only need the band it self, its the watch it self is cost that much because of the very complicated machine inside the watch beside all the fine materials like the case and scratch free screen etc… Most people when they buy luxury watches they not just value its functionality only but they respect and envy its creator whose made such a fine piece of art. While the smartwatches do get out of date but the Timepieces is will never be, as one used to say u don’t owe a Timepiece u only the caregiver.

      • I’m not talking about the SmartBand either, I’m talking about the time piece. That’ll take ~300 years before it starts paying for itself with that automatic clock ticking mechanism.

        As for the SmartBand, also overpriced like almost every other SmartWatch currently on the maetket. I could get a top of the line, factory unlocked SmartPhone (OnePlus One), for that priceprice, and it’ll give me 100s more uses.

        “they respect and envy its creator whose made such a fine piece of art”

        I do that with my wallet for ANY for-profit business. Couldn’t care less about brandsbrands of for-profit, those don’t add any usability value, just identification of product, and that’s no justification for being overpriced IMO.

        Money is no problem for me, but whatever I buy must be justified with usability, features, material quality, etc. Otherwise, just a rip-off in my book. If I have the money to throw at a rip-off, it’ll be going to charity instead.

        Regardless, as you said, to each their own.

      • peace:V

        and by the way, everyone got different taste, so u have the right to buy whatever u like, and about the ( crazyily overpriced ) it kinda like the fine steaks they serve in longhorn steakhouse is overpriced compare to the one in waffles house.

      • Ethan Trice

        there’s a tangible quality difference between the taste between different steaks (obviously with diminishing returns, like any other luxury good). the role of a watch is to tell time and look good. A rolex and invicta watch look almost the same and are both automatic watches, but the rolex costs more. it’s not more accurate, but it is an in-house movement as opposed to the standard ETA movement. Also, mechanical and/or automatic watches have to be repaired every five years (calibration, re-sealed, re-oiled, etc) and fancy watches often have to be taken to fancy shops which take a long time in repair (rolex sometimes won’t get the watch back to you for 6 months). that destroys the utility function of the watch. I wear a Citizen eco drive that has multiple timezones and a stop-watch. It cost me 300 bucks online. It tells time just as well as an automatic and I never have to replace the battery (solar powered).

    • Mersc

      “looks nice as them $100 fossil wrist watches” LOL. Mont Blanc is a Lamborghini and Fossil is a pinto. I service watches. Fossil type watches fall apart all the time, hands fall off, movements go out. Don’t get me wrong, I have and wear a Fossil, but I know what it is, a disposable watch. The movements are tiny (about 10mm) and come straight from China. They’re cheaper than cheap watches. You don’t buy luxury time pieces for features/versatility. It’s an entirely different world. “Watches” cannot be compared to timepieces. Luxury timepieces aren’t for everyone. I don’t have any, the nicest I have is a Tissot. But I understand the vast difference between the two. /rant

      • Really? Sounds like I must have been very lucky, ’cause mine is still looking and functioning good as new. Or perhaps I just take good care of it…

      • Mersc

        Perhaps. I take good care of mine as well. They’re still the cheapest grade of watch.

  • nonchalont

    Oh wow, e-strap, nice idea.

    • BoardDWorld

      It’s a brilliant idea. A lot of people have very expensive watches & to those this is a very affordable upgrade to keep them current. But it needs to fit in with the watch design so I hope they have more than 1 strap design.

  • NandoNY177 .

    Idk about this, most cell phones already track that type of data.

    • John

      This comment confuses me a little.
      If “most cell phones … track that type of data” then there’s be no need for a smart watch market.

      Most cell phones send/receive calls and messages, I’m guessing that means there’s no need for smart phones or tablets, right?

      • NandoNY177 .

        Cell phones can already count your steps, distance, calories or anything fitness related. You can get a smart watch but it not really needed. Think about it, is there really a big need for smart watches ? I wouldn’t buy a fitness tracker cause my iPhone 6 already has a lot of those features.

    • smtp25

      Wow, has to login just so I could call you an idiot. You are an idiot.

      The point is so you can get alerts without having to pull your phone out, see txts, whose calling then you can decide if it’s worth pulling your phone out. It’s more discreet

      • NandoNY177 .

        So the whole point of buying a smart watch is to get notifications with out pulling your phone out? That’s your reason for calling me an idiot? Lol seriously think about what you just said… A good smart watch will cost over 250 dollars, if you want an apple watch that’s going to be 350 dollars out your pocket and your telling me that I should waste that kind of money so that I won’t have to pull out my phone and be more discreet? I am sold! I’m going to change my personal opinion and buy one just for that reason! I happen to be the laziest person on the planet the last thing I want to do is not pull my cell phone out when I get a notificstion… You see how unintelligent I just made you look without calling you names ?

      • smtp25

        Stupid is a synonym of unintelligent. And your still stupid.