It’s no secret that Microsoft is one of the largest tech giants operating around the globe, and the company has its mitts in many aspects of the tech industry: software, gaming, music, and education are just some areas that have received focus from the tech giant. As it turns out, Microsoft really went back to the roots of its name (a portmanteau of microcomputer and software) back in 2013, when it worked on developing an Xbox Smartwatch. This device obviously never came to fruition, but Finnish news website Suomimobiili has just posted images of the device which could have been.
Tech enthusiasts know that late 2014 saw the eventual release of the Microsoft Band, a device which looks significantly different than the smartwatch shown above and below. It’s not known what happened in Microsoft’s inner development circle to scrap the idea of the Xbox Smartwatch, as it would have been a fierce competitor in a market now arguably split between Android wear devices and the Apple Smartwatch, which launched in 2015.
Shown on the back of the watch is a heart rate monitor, with the front of the device featuring a 1.5-inch display. Microsoft would have been ahead of Apple in some regards, as the watch was poised to support magnetic charging and could even sync with Surface tablets when connected. Consumers would also have been able to switch bands for the Xbox Smartwatch, which would have introduced yet another revenue stream for the company.
It’s not known how much the Xbox Smartwatch could have actually tied in to Xbox services, though one imagines some obvious tie-ins like Xbox Live messages and gaming companion apps would have come aplenty. Given the inclusion of an optical heart rate monitor, it’s likely that Microsoft was aiming for the device to work in conjunction with the Xbox Fitness application – a service which Microsoft began shuttering last year.
Since the company cut the cord on the Xbox Smartwatch before it was ready to come to market, it’s not known what the device would have even cost. In any event, Microsoft has evidently shifted its focus onto making the most powerful console it can as opposed to entering the mobile device market. We will keep you posted if more news about the Xbox Smartwatch ever surfaces.
No news on if the Microsoft device would be as adept as Kinect was when detecting if players were aroused.