This is the smartwatch you'll build yourself

Smarter watch?

Thanks to Project Ara we're well on the way to seeing modular smartphones and Blocks aims to do the same for smartwatches.

So you might one day be able to buy a smartwatch customised to your specification. Perhaps you want it to have a camera and a SIM card slot, or maybe you'd rather use that space for a heart rate monitor. And once you've got the watch you'll be able to chop and change modules whenever you want.

Going camping? Put in a bigger battery and a GPS module, going for a jog? Swap in a pedometer. By the same logic you can also upgrade individual modules rather than having to buy a whole new watch once yours becomes outdated.

Modular modules

Blocks promises to be supremely customisable too, as each individual module will have removable covers, so you can customise the look as well as the utility.

Blocks is still in a fairly early stage but it hopes to launch a crowdfunding campaign in the spring of 2015 and have a watch on the market by the end of 2015, and the company is off to a good start as it announced in a blog post that it recently won $50,000 in funding from Intel.

It's not tied to a particular breed of handset either, as its OS is likely to be based on Tizen and the team hopes to make it work with Android, iOS and Windows Phone.

Of course it remains to be seen whether the concept will actually get off the ground, let alone be any good.

It's a small team working on it and making a modular smartwatch isn't without its hurdles, for example modular designs almost inevitably result in extra bulk, which could be a real killer on a wrist-worn wearable, but at least with most of the modules built into the strap the watch face shouldn't suffer too much. It's a nice idea anyway, so let's hope it works out.

  • In the meantime the Moto 360 is a solid smartwatch choice.

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