Is that a modern smartwatch on your wrist or an Inspector Gadget-era doodad? The towering Cross Country smartwatch I strapped onto my arm at CTIA 2014 is a little bit of both.
A 1.5-inch, 240 x 240-pixel touchscreen responds to pinch. It runs Android 4.2 almost in its entirely (Note: not Android Wear.) It sports a removable leather band, GPS, and 4GB of internal storage. Pretty standard so far.
What's different, and perhaps a little daring about this wearable, however, is that it's an attempt to cram all the major components of a smartphone into a watch that sells for a reasonable $160.
There's 3G with a SIM card slot, Wi-Fi, an FM Radio, and a standalone MP3 player. You can also expand storage to up to 32GB, and a camera poking out the side not only shoots photo and video, but lets you edit them from the watch, too. Maps with navigation and a burglar alarm round out some of the features, though you can certainly download more apps through the Google Play store.
We've seen efforts at standalone watches before, but so far the just-launched Samsung Gear S still looks like it's the one to beat. I didn't get much of a chance to evaluate the watch in my brief time with it, but it's always fun to encounter new devices in exploding fields -- especially the ambitious ones that nevertheless feel out of place.