Montblanc e-Strap adds smarts to real watches

montblanc timewalker urban speed e-strapPersonally I think that ‘proper’ watches will always have a place. To me, a precision Swiss movement remains a work of art no matter what technological advancements are made elsewhere. There are those that head to smartwatches for the extras they have to offer. How about if you could have a respected analogue watch but have smarts hidden away in the strap?

Montblanc have introduced a new band as part of their Montblanc Timewalker Urban Speed collection which is equipped with a little 0.9-inch monochromatic OLED screen that can receive and display notifications and messages amongst other things.

This touchscreen display with a 128×36 pixel resolution will also be your gateway to making and taking calls, texts, e-mails, and give you access to calendars, social media, and reminder notifications. The e-Strap will function as an activity monitor/tracker with a pedometer and accelerometer to measure data that feeds into an included iPhone or Android phone app.

The e-Strap features a high-end leather strap which has a carbon fibre textured finish – Montblanc calls it “Extreme Montblanc Leather”. On the underside is an electronic module made from DLC (diamond like carbon) coated steel or in grey steel. Apparently, there are a few other colour and size options.

I keep on hearing how mobile phones, then wearables and smartwatches, will replace watches but the same was said about CDs and downloads killing off vinyl. Once you’ve heard a record on heavy weight vinyl compared with a ‘regular’ download you can tell the difference. For me, even though I obviously love tech, I am more inclined to wear one of my vintage RADO watches (I own automatic, wind-up and electronic models) than slip on a smartwatch. There is something that doesn’t sit right if you’re wearing a nice suit, cufflinks, decent shoes and a smartwatch.

Anyhow, you can buy the Montblanc band separately for about 250 Euros so you can strap it to practically any watch. The Montblanc Timewalker Date Automatic watch goes for around £2,500.

If they had an Android version of the e-Strap I could be tempted as I think it would look rather natty on my Marstron Z.