It’s tough to keep track of all the Kickstarter campaigns, smartwatches and Kickstarter campaigns for smartwatches these days, but here’s something novel: The Omate TrueSmart watch promises to have a built-in microSIM card slot, so you can make calls and get text messages without tethering to your smartphone.
The TrueSmart has some other fancy specs too, like a dual-core processor, a 1.54-inch color touchscreen, a 5-megapixel camera, GPS and vibration alerts. The microSIM slot supports 2G and 3G networks, but no 4G LTE, unfortunately.
The Kickstarter campaign is taking pledges now, starting at $179 to $189 to secure yourself a watch (or $199 after the early bird specials are gone). Omate estimates that it’ll ship in November, but given the track record of other Kickstarter projects we can pretty much assume that’s not going to happen.
In any case, the Omate TrueSmart will have some microSIM-equipped company later this year, albeit at higher prices. The $335 Neptune Pine watch is estimated to ship in December, and the 389-Euro Berg 17 was supposed to launch in July, though it doesn’t seem to be available yet. Samsung was reportedly going to include direct phone calling capabilities in its upcoming smartwatch, but those rumors have been debunked.
Just one problem will all these watches: The way wireless plans work in the United States, you’d have to pay for a separate plan to enable voice, text and data on your watch. Unless you’re ready to have your watch replace your phone entirely, it might be best to stick with Bluetooth tethering after all.