It has been little short of pitiful to watch volume watchmakers capitulate in the face of Apple launching its smartwatch, which inside of five years has grown to outsell the entire Swiss watch industry.
It is not really the Swiss that should have put up a better fight, it is the American and Japanese Groups that should have been far faster to react and defend their turf.
But we are where we are and today, finally, Casio looks like it has a dog in the fight with a sporty G-Shock with built-in heart monitor and GPS tracking.
At last, a watch that recognizes that health and fitness, not seasonal fashion trends, are the key drivers of the smartwatch business.
The G-Shock GBD-H1000 has five sensor functions: an optical sensor that can measure heart rate by detecting the blood flow under the skin, a triple sensor that measures altitude/barometric pressure, compass bearing, and temperature, and an acceleration sensor that measures step count and distance traveled,
It also comes with GPS tracking which, when combined with other data from the watch on an accompanying smartphone app, will cardio-respiratory capacity, calories burned and other health-related information.
Unlike some of the smartwatches made in the name of fashion brands, this G-Shock looks like a watch that G-Shock fans will happily wear thanks to sporty choices of black, white, grey and red color combinations across four styles.
Only the size, at a chunky 63mm × 55mm, is a question mark on the range. But G-Shock fans like big watches, so it may not be a problem.