The great features of Upcoming HTC Halfbeak Smartwatch
HTC does have some wearable devices however, first showing off the HTC Grip, a sports device that was first revealed as a prototype alongside the HTC One M9 in 2015 and fruit of the early Under Armour union. The Grip slipped and we were given the UA Health Box instead, including the UA Band, in early 2016.
But a dedicated smartwatch remains elusive. First called Petra, then dubbed the One Wear, recent leaks have carried the HTC Halfbeak name. Sadly, it seems as though this was nothing more than a prototype, for a project that’s not going to be released. Here’s how the story unfolded, and how it finished.
HTC Halfbeak smartwatch: Design
- Round display
- Heart rate sensor
- UA branding
The HTC Halfbeak has a round watch design with two buttons on the right-hand side, likely to be a home button for Android Wear and a second for a dedicated function, like start stop perhaps, or to launch a dedicated UA Record app.
It’s difficult to judge the materials, but the backplate looks plastic. The watch body is likely to be metal and it looks a little like the Samsung Gear S2: it could be metal, but the shiny finish on the bezel looks odd, and we doubt it will launch like that.
What we can’t discerned is any level of waterproofing. Any sports device is likely to launch with an IP rating to let you swim or run in the rain, but there’s no word on that. However there is an optical heart rate sensor on the rear of the watch.
The strap looks fairly conventional, with a two-tone silicone construction. It looks removable, but doesn’t show signs of being easy to change from what we’ve seen.
HTC Halfbeak smartwatch: Hardware
- Round display with no flat tyre
- 360 x 360 pixel resolution
- Likely Qualcomm Snapdragon Wear
- Attachable charging plate
The original leak of Halfbeak was rumoured to offer a 360 x 360 round display. That’s fairly typical of this type of watch, but actual specs are very thin on the ground. One thing we can judge from the photos is that it’s proper round, unlike the Moto 360 and others that have a flat tyre design, with a section at the bottom that’s a black bar.
There’s no word on specs, but there are a few options. HTC has a long-standing relationship with Qualcomm, so a Snapdragon Wear chipset is a possibility. The current norm is 512MB RAM and 4GB storage for an Android Wear device.
There is an alternative, however, and that’s Intel. We’ve seen companies like Tag Heuer pair up with Intel to power devices. Currently, there’s no way of knowing. There’s also no way of knowing if there’s GPS onboard.
HTC Halfbeak smartwatch: Software
- Android Wear platform
- Likely to run UA Connect app
We’d expect the focus to be on a UA Record app, although Under Armour also owns Map My Fitness (and associated apps), MyFitnessPal and Endomondo, all of which could be included.
With Under Armour branding, the company is likely to push its fitness apps and service first, rather like the Polar M600. This will likely include watchfaces with complications to show you things like steps and let you instantly access the sports app.