Last updated on November 15th, 2015 at 12:07 pm

Olio Model One Smartwatch

Introducing the Olio Model One Smartwatch, which some experts are calling “Apple’s biggest competitor in the smartwatch market”.

On the Model One’s face you’ll find a screen that shows you notifications, weather information, and appointments sorted by time: ‘Earlier’ and ‘Later’. Being a smartwatch it naturally handles incoming calls with Bluetooth, and is microphone-enabled for easy control. Olio also claim it can run for multiple days without hooking it to its wireless charger.

The stainless 47mm steel case comes with either a genuine leather band or a steel link bracelet depending on your preference. It’s brushed with hand-polished white and ice blue markers, and is made from Guilloché textured high-impact Ion-Exchange glass crystal. Aesthetically, it’s one of our favourites on the smartwatch market. It’s clean and sophisticated but looks futuristic enough to really feel innovative.

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It’s doing its best to avoid apps, too. According to Olio, “Apps make a lot of sense for phones, but apps don’t make sense for connected devices as a category, let alone the small real estate of something you wear on your wrist. Instead of forcing everybody to download all the same apps as on their phone over again or following the same paradigm that they do on a much larger device, what we do is connect the watch to all the apps and services that are important to you, vis-à-vis with all the apps you already have on your phone.” We couldn’t agree more!

It should be said that the Olio development team compromises of creatives with a history at Apple, Beats, Pixar and NASA. So they mean business. The San Francisco-based company describes itself on its website as, “A new, design-focused company with a passion for enriching peoples’ lives through premium products and meaningful connectivity.”

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“We thoughtfully blend the highest quality materials with carefully crafted design and considered intelligence for products that are as immediately functional as they are enduring and expressive,” states Olio. “With a passion for detail, simplicity and empowerment, the Olio team works hard to give you freedom of choice in what you wear and time to focus on what matters most to you.”

Olio doesn’t seem to be defining itself as a specific device maker and doesn’t even mention any product in its initial pitch. Sounds very Apple, doesn’t it? We’re not sure if that’s a sign of quality or plagiarism. But we are certain that the Model One Smartwatch looks fantastic, on paper anyway.

The Olio smartwatch, unlike the Apple Watch, will work with both Apple iOS devices and Android smartphones with pricing for the Model One starting at around £450 including shipping. Shipments will begin in the summer and will initially be limited to 500 pieces. Check out more details on the Olio Website.

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