Hybrid Smart Watch rundown: my path to buying a Fredrique Constant notify
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Thread: Hybrid Smart Watch rundown: my path to buying a Fredrique Constant notify

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  1. #1
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    Hybrid Smart Watch rundown: my path to buying a Fredrique Constant notify

    Hello everyone,

    I noticed there was very little in the way of hybrid smartwatch posts on this forum so I thought it might be helpful to post what I found. I obviously winded up getting a notify, but you tastes may be radically different. I hope me going over what I saw as the pros and cons of each watch helps your decision, even if we have different tastes and priorities in a watch.

    I was an early adopter of smartwatch especially. I bought a few first gen Moto 360 and wore it throughout my time selling copiers. It helped clients think I was more techy than the older guys and I won at least one Enterprise software sale at a law firm with it.

    I know because the client legit cited it as a reason.

    That said I hated it's bulk, how cheap it felt, and the fact it was just a black screen most of the time. The notification overload was also a problem. The step counter was huge though, as was knowing when I was getting a phone call. Some of us work in a field where responding to a call in a few minutes is a big deal.

    My only other watch is an old Swiss army Maverick II my pops bought me when I learned to scuba 18 years ago or so. I've never owned a mechanical watch but certainly want to someday and have harassed many a store clerk to try on outrageous watches. I'm no expert when it comes to fine finishing, but I've spent many hours examing Pateks, Vacherons, JLCs, Blancpain, etc.

    It was easier when I lived in NYC, and if your wearing a good suit and visiting on a weekday you can look at whatever with a Westchester accent but now that I'm in MI I litterally have to go on road trips 😛

    Onto my reviews/research notes for hybrids

    To start, I understand a large number of people think hybrids are stupid and apple is the best, good for you! I will start with the two watches I purchased, then ones I've seen in the store, then ones I know about only from the internet.

    I have an 8 inch wrist in part from lifting in part from titanium steel plates holding my forearm together.

    Let me start with the Fossil Q (pictured and owned)

    This is a great watch to pickup on sale to test the technology. It's app is extremely easy to use, can have 12 distinct notifications (vibrates and points to number) and from what I can tell will get notifications from any app.

    If this watch wasn't an oversized plastic monstrosity I would have happily worn it. If 45mm plastic dress watches that are so thick no dress shirt will ever fit over it are your thing, this is the watch for you. In all of 2 weeks wearing this watch the bezel has gotten visably scratched and the band has begun to seriously shrivel up like bacon.

    The lume in the hands is good, the hands are simple brushed steel with no finishing at all, the dial is a stamped peice of either steel or aluminum with raised Roman numerals that have been painted. No they don't have lume. Functionally this watch is great and easy to use.

    If this watch is outside of what you would call acceptable dress a Skagen might do the trick. It uses the same tech yet is a more slender presentation of Casio level quality.

    On the other hand if you are a college student, or simply have a more youthfully flashy waredrobe you can also get the same tech in
    -Armani
    -Micheal Kors
    -Deisel
    And others.

    I didn't deliver too deeply into researching this segment as I saw this watch as more of a prototype than anything else. That said if it is your end goal, and I certainly wish it was mine at 80 dollars with good functionality, you will be very pleased at it's versitility.

    You can decide to get alerted at every call, email, app notification, etc or restrict what comes through. You can specifically select contacts in terms or call or text, but if your getting alerts outside of that (Kik, Gmail, work email, etc) you cannot. You can also set all calls as a certain number, and specific people/apps as specific numbers.

    It has step counting and sleep tracking. If you can manage to sleep with this thing on your wrist, after say drinking heavily with friends, the vibrating alarm is very good at waking you up in even the deepest of sleeps. It also has a 2nd Time zone function which is great if you have relatives across the globe.

    Be forewarned the ring my phone feature is horrible. Sure if works in the store, it works in the car, it works so long as you don't move out of range of your phone with the watch. If you do so, it will not reconnect in any timely or consistent Manor.

    So for example, let's say you live in a 2000 square foot colonial and realize you don't know where your phone is (it's been hidden in a pan in a drawer by your 2 year old daughter because lol that's where phones go). You've finished your shower, shave, and are on your way out the door when you realize you don't know where it is. It's also on silent because the watch tells you when people call now.

    It will not ring the phone. You can spend 5 minutes in each room pushing the button, it will not ring. Even once you've found the phone, angrily put it next to the watch, and mash the button it will not ring. Not until you turn the phone on and unlock it.



    Again if the presentation is acceptable to you, this is a good watch for the long term. Don't silence your phone. Also sometimes it randomly vibrates, dunno why.


    Fredrique Constant Notify (pictured and owned)

    I ended up selecting this watch based mostly off of it's presentation. It looks and feels like an actual watch, it's finishing was the best out of the lot (no where close to JLC and above of course), and it had polished applied indicies and polished hands with a halfway decent face.

    It wears about as thick as a quarts divewatch. While it is between 13 and 14 mm thick it wears more like a 12 in my opinion and from the side does not look bulky at all. The leather strap is hard to break in and lined with rubber, both good points. While the stiching on the strap is mediocre at best your not getting haute horrology at 500 (290 on Amazon).

    Be forewarned, this watch takes a difficult to find CR3032 battery. If you decide to go with this watch and purchase from the grey market as I did, buy some batteries with your purchase. They don't carry them anywhere.

    When this watch came out many reviews said pairing was difficult, I strongly disagree. I'm running Android on a galexy s8 and had no issues.

    You can set 3 displays activated by pushing in the crown one, two, or three times. It doesn't pretend to have the ability to ring your phone.

    It only alerts you after you've missed a call, which I personally perfer. It only alerts aside from that for texts and Google emails. There where maybe 10 other apps it connects with but I don't use them, or want linked in notifications to buzz my wrist.

    So functionally its primarily,
    -a vibrating alarm (good but not as good as Fossil I'm)
    -can settup 2nd Time zone to be displayed
    -step counter
    -alerts to missed calls and texts
    -very limited email. If your corporate email account is anything other than Google, don't expect this to help.
    -sleep tracker

    Bassically almost the perfect amount of limited functionality for me, maybe not good enough for you. Best looking hybrid out of the lot by a long shot. Limited lume on the hands.

    Kronaby sekel (tried on in store and researched)

    Another all steel watch that looks like an actual watch. The number one feature, in my opinion, is that it has IFTT functionality. That means you can program it (well not exactly it but nevermind) to open your smart garage, turn on your smart lights, or activate the remote controlled fire pots you have connected to a smart switch around your koi pond.

    That's some James Bond .... and if ....... will suck dick after hearing "computer turn on fire" then just imagine what will occur if you do it with your watch. Completely worth the 4-5 grand the settup costs.

    Or you could have it activate your ring floodlight alarm when your ex wife shows up. The possibilities are endless.

    Asude from that you can set up 3 different vibration patterns for different apps or contacts. I found the app slightly harder to use than fossils but far easier than Fredrique constants. I also had no problem pairing it to my phone.

    While the face is no where near as cheap looking as the Fossil, it's ok for a quartz at best. Movado level maybe?

    The indicies are applied but like the hands are just straight cut steel that has seen a buffing wheel. Both the hands and indicies look jagged.

    The bracelet is of decent quality.

    What kills this watch for me though is the case. A fat bottom that curls inward than comes up like a vase. It's as thick as the Fossil and wears that way. The metal bracelet will hide that to some extent, but it's inescapable.

    That said it doesn't wear like an Invicta. It feels similar to an annual callendar, except bulkier and unsexy. I felt meh about the dial and hated the case so out it went.

    Also tried on the Apex, it wears the exact same except looks just like a shinola. If overpriced fossils are your thing, go with that model.

    Alpina seastrong (tried it on)

    Same functionality as the Fredrique constant except its a plastic case that's both wider and thicker for no reason. Face also looks cheap.

    AlpinerX (research only)

    That said if you love the seastrong, because that's your style, I strongly recommend checking out the AlipinerX. You can pick one up direct off the Kickstarter for like 590 and it's better in everyway.


    Anyhow, I've run out of steam. I'll come back latter to add,

    Martian
    Guess (uses Martian but gaudier I suppose)

    That's all I know. If anyone else has anything to add in the way of other hybrids, I look forward to reading it.
    Attached Images Attached Images





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  2. #2
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    Re: Hybrid Smart Watch rundown: my path to buying a Fredrique Constant notify

    Hi Nick,

    Thank you for the report.

    I agree that Frederique Constant is the better looking watch.


    Thanks,
    rationaltime

  3. #3
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    Re: Hybrid Smart Watch rundown: my path to buying a Fredrique Constant notify

    To second rationaltime's comment, the FC is much classier.
    The Fossil has more of a toy feel, where as the FC is elegant.

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  5. #4
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    Re: Hybrid Smart Watch rundown: my path to buying a Fredrique Constant notify

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick24601 View Post
    Hello everyone,

    I noticed there was very little in the way of hybrid smartwatch posts on this forum so I thought it might be helpful to post what I found. I obviously winded up getting a notify, but you tastes may be radically different. I hope me going over what I saw as the pros and cons of each watch helps your decision, even if we have different tastes and priorities in a watch.

    I was an early adopter of smartwatch especially. I bought a few first gen Moto 360 and wore it throughout my time selling copiers. It helped clients think I was more techy than the older guys and I won at least one Enterprise software sale at a law firm with it.

    I know because the client legit cited it as a reason.

    That said I hated it's bulk, how cheap it felt, and the fact it was just a black screen most of the time. The notification overload was also a problem. The step counter was huge though, as was knowing when I was getting a phone call. Some of us work in a field where responding to a call in a few minutes is a big deal.

    My only other watch is an old Swiss army Maverick II my pops bought me when I learned to scuba 18 years ago or so. I've never owned a mechanical watch but certainly want to someday and have harassed many a store clerk to try on outrageous watches. I'm no expert when it comes to fine finishing, but I've spent many hours examing Pateks, Vacherons, JLCs, Blancpain, etc.

    It was easier when I lived in NYC, and if your wearing a good suit and visiting on a weekday you can look at whatever with a Westchester accent but now that I'm in MI I litterally have to go on road trips

    Onto my reviews/research notes for hybrids

    To start, I understand a large number of people think hybrids are stupid and apple is the best, good for you! I will start with the two watches I purchased, then ones I've seen in the store, then ones I know about only from the internet.

    I have an 8 inch wrist in part from lifting in part from titanium steel plates holding my forearm together.

    Let me start with the Fossil Q (pictured and owned)

    This is a great watch to pickup on sale to test the technology. It's app is extremely easy to use, can have 12 distinct notifications (vibrates and points to number) and from what I can tell will get notifications from any app.

    If this watch wasn't an oversized plastic monstrosity I would have happily worn it. If 45mm plastic dress watches that are so thick no dress shirt will ever fit over it are your thing, this is the watch for you. In all of 2 weeks wearing this watch the bezel has gotten visably scratched and the band has begun to seriously shrivel up like bacon.

    The lume in the hands is good, the hands are simple brushed steel with no finishing at all, the dial is a stamped peice of either steel or aluminum with raised Roman numerals that have been painted. No they don't have lume. Functionally this watch is great and easy to use.

    If this watch is outside of what you would call acceptable dress a Skagen might do the trick. It uses the same tech yet is a more slender presentation of Casio level quality.

    On the other hand if you are a college student, or simply have a more youthfully flashy waredrobe you can also get the same tech in
    -Armani
    -Micheal Kors
    -Deisel
    And others.

    I didn't deliver too deeply into researching this segment as I saw this watch as more of a prototype than anything else. That said if it is your end goal, and I certainly wish it was mine at 80 dollars with good functionality, you will be very pleased at it's versitility.

    You can decide to get alerted at every call, email, app notification, etc or restrict what comes through. You can specifically select contacts in terms or call or text, but if your getting alerts outside of that (Kik, Gmail, work email, etc) you cannot. You can also set all calls as a certain number, and specific people/apps as specific numbers.

    It has step counting and sleep tracking. If you can manage to sleep with this thing on your wrist, after say drinking heavily with friends, the vibrating alarm is very good at waking you up in even the deepest of sleeps. It also has a 2nd Time zone function which is great if you have relatives across the globe.

    Be forewarned the ring my phone feature is horrible. Sure if works in the store, it works in the car, it works so long as you don't move out of range of your phone with the watch. If you do so, it will not reconnect in any timely or consistent Manor.

    So for example, let's say you live in a 2000 square foot colonial and realize you don't know where your phone is (it's been hidden in a pan in a drawer by your 2 year old daughter because lol that's where phones go). You've finished your shower, shave, and are on your way out the door when you realize you don't know where it is. It's also on silent because the watch tells you when people call now.

    It will not ring the phone. You can spend 5 minutes in each room pushing the button, it will not ring. Even once you've found the phone, angrily put it next to the watch, and mash the button it will not ring. Not until you turn the phone on and unlock it.



    Again if the presentation is acceptable to you, this is a good watch for the long term. Don't silence your phone. Also sometimes it randomly vibrates, dunno why.


    Fredrique Constant Notify (pictured and owned)

    I ended up selecting this watch based mostly off of it's presentation. It looks and feels like an actual watch, it's finishing was the best out of the lot (no where close to JLC and above of course), and it had polished applied indicies and polished hands with a halfway decent face.

    It wears about as thick as a quarts divewatch. While it is between 13 and 14 mm thick it wears more like a 12 in my opinion and from the side does not look bulky at all. The leather strap is hard to break in and lined with rubber, both good points. While the stiching on the strap is mediocre at best your not getting haute horrology at 500 (290 on Amazon).

    Be forewarned, this watch takes a difficult to find CR3032 battery. If you decide to go with this watch and purchase from the grey market as I did, buy some batteries with your purchase. They don't carry them anywhere.

    When this watch came out many reviews said pairing was difficult, I strongly disagree. I'm running Android on a galexy s8 and had no issues.

    You can set 3 displays activated by pushing in the crown one, two, or three times. It doesn't pretend to have the ability to ring your phone.

    It only alerts you after you've missed a call, which I personally perfer. It only alerts aside from that for texts and Google emails. There where maybe 10 other apps it connects with but I don't use them, or want linked in notifications to buzz my wrist.

    So functionally its primarily,
    -a vibrating alarm (good but not as good as Fossil I'm)
    -can settup 2nd Time zone to be displayed
    -step counter
    -alerts to missed calls and texts
    -very limited email. If your corporate email account is anything other than Google, don't expect this to help.
    -sleep tracker

    Bassically almost the perfect amount of limited functionality for me, maybe not good enough for you. Best looking hybrid out of the lot by a long shot. Limited lume on the hands.

    Kronaby sekel (tried on in store and researched)

    Another all steel watch that looks like an actual watch. The number one feature, in my opinion, is that it has IFTT functionality. That means you can program it (well not exactly it but nevermind) to open your smart garage, turn on your smart lights, or activate the remote controlled fire pots you have connected to a smart switch around your koi pond.

    That's some James Bond .... and if ....... will suck dick after hearing "computer turn on fire" then just imagine what will occur if you do it with your watch. Completely worth the 4-5 grand the settup costs.

    Or you could have it activate your ring floodlight alarm when your ex wife shows up. The possibilities are endless.

    Asude from that you can set up 3 different vibration patterns for different apps or contacts. I found the app slightly harder to use than fossils but far easier than Fredrique constants. I also had no problem pairing it to my phone.

    While the face is no where near as cheap looking as the Fossil, it's ok for a quartz at best. Movado level maybe?

    The indicies are applied but like the hands are just straight cut steel that has seen a buffing wheel. Both the hands and indicies look jagged.

    The bracelet is of decent quality.

    What kills this watch for me though is the case. A fat bottom that curls inward than comes up like a vase. It's as thick as the Fossil and wears that way. The metal bracelet will hide that to some extent, but it's inescapable.

    That said it doesn't wear like an Invicta. It feels similar to an annual callendar, except bulkier and unsexy. I felt meh about the dial and hated the case so out it went.

    Also tried on the Apex, it wears the exact same except looks just like a shinola. If overpriced fossils are your thing, go with that model.

    Alpina seastrong (tried it on)

    Same functionality as the Fredrique constant except its a plastic case that's both wider and thicker for no reason. Face also looks cheap.

    AlpinerX (research only)

    That said if you love the seastrong, because that's your style, I strongly recommend checking out the AlipinerX. You can pick one up direct off the Kickstarter for like 590 and it's better in everyway.


    Anyhow, I've run out of steam. I'll come back latter to add,

    Martian
    Guess (uses Martian but gaudier I suppose)

    That's all I know. If anyone else has anything to add in the way of other hybrids, I look forward to reading it.
    I feel so lucky to be part of a community that puts forth so much effort to provide information and help to other members. Thank you for the excellent review!

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