From the calculator watch to the watch that doubled as a TV remote, one could argue that the world was introduced to wearable devices by Casio, a company that’s developed unique timepieces since 1974.
Though the company hasn’t really been in the spotlight since it saw electrifying success with the G-shock series in the 1990s, it’s gearing up for a smartwatch release in March of 2016. With new president Kazuhiro Kashio at the helm (he took the reins from his father who’d been president for 27 years), Casio is looking to double their over profits over the next couple years according to conversation with the Wall Street Journal.
Now that the wave of nostalgia you felt has somewhat passed, here’s all that’s been unveiled about the new and supposedly improved (that simple, old-school calculator watch is pretty iconic…) Casio, so far.
What makes it different?
This smartwatch isn’t going to pretend to be anything that it’s not. Instead of packing it full of mediocre applications, Casio told the WSJ that he intends for the devices to be watches primarily and allow the “smart” functions to fall in place.
Greatness can’t be rushed, and in order to get the watch just right, Kashio also said, “[Casio is] trying to bring our smartwatch to a level of watch perfection: a device that won’t break easily, is simple to put on and feels good to wear.”
How much will it cost?
Looking to match the Apple Watch, Casio anticipates a starting price of about $400 for the first generation of smartwatches. The company has set a lofty goal of an expected $80 million in smartwatch sales. But Casio will approach cautiously, with Kashio saying, “I don’t think the smartwatch will be an instant success, but we want it to grow in the long term.”
Apple CEO Tim Cook echoed the importance of figuring out what kind of wearable product consumers want before worrying about profits when he said,”We’re actually not focused on the numbers, we’re focused on the things that produce the numbers.”
The Casio smartwatch market is expected to reach nearly $100.35 million in revenue by 2018. By then, we’ll know whether or not Casio has the chops required in wearables nowadays.