There is news coming out of Forbes that Microsoft has its eyes on a new market: wearables. According to Parmy Olsen:

Microsoft is the latest technology giant preparing to jump into the wearables market, with plans to offer a sensor-rich smartwatch that measures heart rate and synchs with iPhones, Android phones and Windows Phones, Forbes has learned.1

This is a strange move for Microsoft, as they are well behind the competition. Even further, I for one think that the smartwatch/wearables is little more than a fad. Whatever the case, it looks as if Microsoft has a very powerful device in the works. Some of the supposed Microsoft watch features include, according to Forbes:

The device will draw on optical engineering expertise from Microsoft’s Xbox Kinect division to continuously measure heart rate through the day and night, according to multiple sources with knowledge of the company’s plans, while the battery will last for two days, roughly on par with Samsung’s Gear Fit

the smartwatch won’t just tie in with Windows Phone devices, but will also work with both iPhones and Android smartphones…

The watch will look similar to the Samsung Gear Fit and feature a full-color touch screen about the size of half a stick of gum, positioned on the inside of the wearer’s wrist. The unorthodox screen-placing appears to be aimed at making it easier and more private to view notifications.2

Of course, Microsoft has yet to comment on the validity of the Forbes article. Perhaps the most important feature of this rumored watch is the cross-platform nature. This makes a lot of sense, but other than that, it is hard to imagine why Microsoft is undertaking such a task.

  1. Parmy Olsen, Forbes, “Exclusive: A Microsoft Smartwatch Is Coming,” 29 May 2014  
  2. Ibid