Q&A: Will.i.am dubs his Puls wearable a bracelet, not a smartwatch

Will.i.am, during an interview, explained the thinking behind his wearable device

Will.i.am's new Puls smartwatch, with a blurred Will.i.am in the background.

Will.i.am's new Puls smartwatch, with a blurred Will.i.am in the background.

Musician and technology entrepreneur Will.i.am unveiled the "Puls" on Wednesday, a high-tech bracelet that lets people make phone calls, check Twitter and Instagram, and tell the time.

But don't call it a smartwatch.

"Just because it's on your wrist, this is not a watch," Will.i.am said during a joint interview with the IDG News Service and The Verge, following the official unveiling at the Salesforce Dreamforce conference in San Francisco.

"It's more a cuff than it is a watch. It's more a bracelet," Will.i.am said, referring to the smooth round shape of the device, and the sweet spot between function and fashion Will.i.am, and his brand i.am+, is trying to hit with the unit.

[Watch Q&A with Will.i.am here.]

As far as software and apps go, the Puls works similarly to many new smartwatches running Google's Android Wear like products from Samsung and LG, and Apple's upcoming Apple Watch. Do we really need another one of these?

But unlike those devices, the Puls lets users make phone calls without being tethered to a smartphone, by requiring a data plan from AT&T in the U.S. or O2 in the U.K.

The unit is slated to launch during the 2014 holiday season, with a price yet to be disclosed, though still less than a smartphone by a big margin, Will.i.am has said.

During the interview, he sought to explain why the Puls is unique, and why it matters in an increasingly crowded market of competitors. The interview has been edited for length and clarity.

Zach Miners covers social networking, search and general technology news for IDG News Service. Follow Zach on Twitter at @zachminers. Zach's e-mail address is zach_miners@idg.com

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags mobile applicationsInternet-based applications and servicesPulsconsumer electronicsi.am+mobileinternet

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Zach Miners

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?