Forbes is reporting that Microsoft has a smartwatch design in the works. Like all other smartwatches, it appears to feature a heart rate monitor to be used by health enthusiasts to track their conditions. However, unlike most other smartwatches, Microsoft is reported to be making this particular device work with Windows Phone, Android, and iOS operating systems.
The report indicates that Microsoft’s smartwatch will feature a display that sits on the inside of the user’s arm. A position that is supposedly to allow people to privately check messages; although there is the question if anyone will buy into the idea of a watch that is worn in such an awkward place.
Microsoft’s Kinect is also involved in the project, as expertise from the Xbox Kinect division is being used to integrate the heart rate monitor for health tracking. It is doubtful that this feature will convince many to pick up a MS branded smartwatch over a regular fitness band. Smartwatches have had a rocky start, and while many manufacturers have -attempted to cash in on the movement, consumers have not responded very enthusiastically.
If anything, the biggest draw for this project would be the ability for it to operate with all three of the main smartphone operating systems. Allowing users to switch phones without worrying about invalidating their wearable device. Microsoft has been working to bring its products and services to other platforms ever since Satya Nadella took over; and this appears to be part of the plan to integrate Microsoft into everything again.