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First Look: The Android-powered I'm Watch smartwatch promises to pack lots of apps on your wrist

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First Look: The Android-powered I'm Watch smartwatch promises to pack lots of apps on your wrist

2:12 /

For $350, the I'm Watch smartwatch touts a bevy of capabilities including running apps to view phone info and make calls right from your wrist.

Hi. This is Brian Bennett for CNET.com and today, we're taking a first look at the I'm Watch SmartWatch. Built by Italian manufacturer I'm S.p. A., this $350 piece of wrist technology certainly cost the pretty penny but promises too quite a bit. The I'm Watch runs a custom version of Android 2.1 and links to smartphones via wireless Bluetooth connection. Once connected with your handset, it feeds data to a variety of preloaded mini apps you open and manipulate by tapping and swiping the device's touchscreen. That means in theory, you'll be able to check Facebook, Twitter, e-mail and weather right from your wrist. The idea is to have access to your phone info even when your phone is tucked away in pockets, bags or coats. Immediately, though, I see some detractors about the I'm Watch's design. First, it's very large and has a massive wristband that wouldn't be out of a place in a Roman Gladiator movie. Second, the twin I'm Watch logos on each side of the watch strap are pretty tacky. Crafted from aluminum, however, the I'm Watch does have very sturdy construction, two metal hinges also help provide a comfortable fit. The 1.54-inch color LCD is bright too and can be seen outdoors. The screen's curve surface also lends itself to ergonomic finger scrolling. On the left side's set of speaker and a 3.5 mm headphone jack for listening to music and charging the device. On the right is a power slash back button along with a microphone use when making calls. That's right. The I'm Watch also has an app to make and receive phone calls or stream them from your wrist. Now, that's pretty sleek. At the moment, there aren't a lot of watch faces or even third party apps available for the I'm Watch. Hopefully that will change soon. I do like this retro LED style world clock app though. With big bold looks and real Android, the I'm Watch definitely has potential but will this gizmo be enough to be back stiff competition from the new Pebble Watch and more conservative Martian Passport. As they say, the pouf is in the pudding. Be sure to check back soon for a full review. I'm Brian Bennett for CNET.com and this has been a first look at the I'm Watch SmartWatch.

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