No Apple Watch has ever had a camera. The max an Apple Watch can do is to control your iPhone camera. This was true until Wristcam introduced their first wearable camera a few months ago.
Though Apple secured a patent for a wristband camera for itself in 2016, it never really tweaked the Apple Watch design to fit a camera inside. Samsung, however, introduced one in its first Galaxy Gear watch and its successor Gear 2. But that was the end of it.
As the smartwatch is becoming more and more a standalone device, the market for necessary modules is rising in parallel. Wristcam saw an opportunity and became the first company to introduce a modular cam for the Apple watch. But its ambition is not limited to Apple.
Wristcam is a lightweight camera on your disposal to take quick photos on the go. The only two downsides are its bulky size and hefty price tag. More on that later.
Wristcam Review: Specs and Features
8MP World-Facing + 2MP Self-Facing 1080P HD Video 3840X2160 High-Resolution Photo
8GB INTERNAL STORAGE
Holds 2000 photos or 1 hour of video
WiFi (2.4+5 GHz) and Bluetooth (5.0) Compatible
IP68 tested for up to 1 meter for 30 minutes
ALL DAY BATTERY
Can last for up to 8 hours
Takes three hours to completely charge.
A dedicated USB charging cable seamlessly connects and rapidly charges
At just 23 grams and under 1/2 inch in size, Wristcam is super compact and lightweight
Equipped with Bright Led’s to let you and the world know when you are capturing
What’s in the box:
Wristcam Review: Availability & Pricing
The Wristcam costs you a whopping $299, and a little extra if you want a band other than the standard ones that come with the watch. The bands are available in a variety of colors: noir, blanc, gray, rose, and sage. Additional band colors are available for $49 in Twilight, Grape Crush, and Henna.
The wearable camera is available for Apple watches of all sizes: 38mm, 40mm, 42mm, and 44mm.
You can book an order on the Wristcam website, and there is a 30-days return policy with the product. These are supported for all Apple Watches, but the smartwatch app works best on iPhone 4 and later.
Wristcam Review: How Does It Operate?
The strap is equipped with two cameras: rear and front. There is a multifunctional button fit inside the strap. A single press would snap a photo; long press records videos and double press would allow you to switch between the cameras.
The rear 8-megapixel camera can shoot 1080p video and take snaps in 4K resolution and the front 2-megapixel camera is for selfies. The result of the rear camera is comparable to iPhone 8 as it uses the same sensors by Sony.
To send short video clips and even live videos to other Wristcam wearers, the smartwatch app integrates with the messaging app on the watch. You cannot facetime by using this camera. As the Apple Watch would get faster in the future to run Augmented Reality apps, Wristcam would be a critical module for AR gaming enthusiasts.
Wristcam Review: Design
The band has a bulky yet lightweight design. It weighs around 23g so do not add any substantial weight to your Apple Watch. To put things in context, Apple Watch’s sports band weighs 40g.
As discussed earlier, it comes in a variety of colors to match your styling.
The two cameras have led lights for those who are concerned about their privacy. Also for the obvious reason that the technology should not be used to breach the privacy of others. Apart from that, there is a microphone to let you record sound as you shoot videos.
The camera is IP68 rated, which in layman’s terms means water-resistant for up to 1 meter for up to 30 minutes.
The device is built following Apple’s design and environmental guidelines set down in Apple’s “Made for Apple Watch” program, which until now has mainly featured chargers and docks.
Wristcam Review: Storage
The device has 8 GB of internal storage to take thousands of photos and record for at least 1-hour of high-quality video. It automatically offloads the photos to your iPhone when charging via Bluetooth or Wifi connectivity.
Wristcam Review: Video Calling
You cannot video call on the smartwatch yet, but you would be able to send and receive videos or live streaming. Just remember, it would be more like a walkie-talkie where you can’t send and receive at the same time.
For now, the company has allowed this feature for only wrist cam users. However, the company is aiming towards video chat between the apple watch and iPhone and Android phones.
There is also an app for Apple Watch. These apps act as a viewfinder, gallery, and a couple of controls. They also allow you to share videos and photos captured by the Camera on popular social networks.
Wristcam Review: Connectivity
To connect to the iPhone, the watch uses the fastest Bluetooth 5.0 connection. WiFi connectivity is also available. However, the camera connects to the watch via Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE).
The Bluetooth connection with the Apple Watch allows it to immediately upload the photo for preview on the screen of the watch. It takes about 20 sec to share a photo with the watch.
Wristcam Review: Battery Life & Charging
It comes with a curve battery that is light as a feather. The battery lasts for up to 8-10 hours of steady camera usage. Also, it comes with a proprietary charger that connects to it magnetically. The camera would take about 3 hours to charge from 0-100%. While charging, it syncs with the iPhone to share the media files.
A handy smartwatch cam would take your smartwatch one step closer to a standalone experience. The add-on allows you to take photos while hiking, running, or riding. As the Apple Watch can make calls, send texts, make payments, stream music, a camera module gives you the freedom to leave the iPhone at home. Wristcam is the future only if the team behind it managed to refine its design to make it less bulky and lower the price to nearly half of what it costs now to keep it in the budget range of most users.