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Martian Notifier handles phone alerts discreetly and with class (hands-on)

Martian shows off the $129.99 Notifier smartwatch at CES 2014, featuring handsome analog looks and high-tech smartphone alerts.

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Brian Bennett
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Brian Bennett Senior writer

Brian Bennett is a senior writer for the home and outdoor section at CNET. He reviews a wide range of household and smart-home products. These include everything from cordless and robot vacuum cleaners to fire pits, grills and coffee makers. An NYC native, Brian now resides in bucolic Louisville, Kentucky where he rides longboards downhill in his free time.

2 min read

LAS VEGAS -- If you're looking for a smartwatch that does slick smartphone notifications on the sly, check out the new $129.99 Martian Notifier. Announced and shown for the first time at CES 2014, this analog timepiece looks like a traditional ticker at first glance. That's a mistaken impression, though, since the Notifier can display phone-based alerts as you get them via its side-scrolling OLED.

Martian Notifier watch keeps you in the loop for less (pictures)

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Designed to connect to both Android and iPhones via a companion mobile app, the Notifier communicates to handsets via Bluetooth 4.0 (BLE). Also nifty is that any application or software on your phone that showcases alerts in the notification area will be pushed to the watch's display. That means even future apps that haven't arrived on the market yet, as long as their alerts appear in your device's main notification section, will be supported.

To achieve its lower price (compared with its predecessor the Martian Passport), the Notifier doesn't have a speakerphone to conduct calls through the watch itself. Neither can it listen out for your voice commands to carry out your wishes. That said, Martian explains the Notifier can do a few handy new things.

Martian Notifier
View discreet notifications on the handsome yet affordable Martian Notifier. Brian Bennett/CNET

Specifically you have the ability to control how the Notifier calls out incoming texts, emails, and other events by tweaking its haptic vibrations. For instance, you can set the device to buzz gently one, two, three, or four times. Additionally you can set the watch to pulse in short or long durations -- think of it as a custom Morse code if you will. The idea here is for you to know what type of alert has happened without moving a muscle.

Interested in the Martian Notifier? Look for the device to arrive this spring.

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