There are two things holding back most people that are on the fence over whether or not to buy a smartwatch. First up is battery life -- unless you opt for the black-and-grey E-Ink Pebble, any colour touchscreen smartwatch will need charging after a day or so. Secondly is finding the answer to the tough question "what's the bloody point of a smartwatch?"
While China's Shanda may not have an answer to the second question, it thinks it's got a solution to the first: its Geak Watch 2 Pro smartwatch has an innovative display that uses both colour LCD and E-Ink technology. As a result, with judicious use of its low-power E-Ink standby mode, it can last for as long as 18 days on a single charge. A second cheaper Geak Watch 2 model (which uses plastics instead of metals in its construction) last an admirable 15 days between charges.
These charging intervals are of course dependant on usage, but even if you hammer the LCD screen regularly, both watches will last six or seven days between charges, according to Shanda.
With a 1.3 inch, 254 PPI display, both feature a built in heart rate monitor. But neither uses Google's Android Wear operating system. With Android Wear reliant on Google Now cards which are blocked in China (the only territory the Geak Watch 2 models are currently available in), Shanda has instead opted for a proprietary skinned version of Android 4.3 for the watches, complete with its own app store.
While a UK release is unlikely, it's exactly the out-of-the-box thinking needed to give smartwatches a much-needed power boost. Should you consider importing one of the watches, expect to pay around £203 for the standard plastic model and £254 for the Geak Watch 2 Pro, before taking into account taxes and shipping costs. [BBC]