Microsoft has been working on a smartwatch for at least a year now although leaks and rumors regarding the wearable have been few and far between. Outside of a report last summer that suggested the device would be constructed of transparent aluminum, we haven’t heard much about Redmond’s upcoming offering… until now.
A new report from Forbes claims Microsoft’s smartphone will be a sensor-rich affair that will draw on the engineering expertise of the company’s Xbox Kinect division. It’ll be able to do things like continuously measure heart rate according to multiple sources with knowledge of the project.
The device will look similar to the Samsung Gear Fit and feature a full-color touch screen that’s about half the size of a stick of gum. It’ll be positioned on the band on the inside of the wearer’s wrist, an interesting placement that could be aimed at keeping others from viewing notifications.
Perhaps more important than any other specification or feature is the revelation that compatibility won’t be limited to Windows Phone devices. Instead, the wearable will work with other devices including Android phones and Apple’s iPhone.
Making the device compatible across all major mobile platforms will no doubt ensure Microsoft will sell more units but at the same time, it won’t do much for Windows Phone sales at prospective buyers would have no reason to buy into Microsoft’s mobile phone ecosystem.
A release date for the device hasn’t been set although sources claim it could arrive as early as this summer.