BLOCKS, the newest upstart in the wearables space, will launch on US crowdfunding platform Kickstarter next Tuesday (13 October), with its founder Alireza Tahmasebzadeh confident the campaign has “the capacity to achieve multi-million dollar investment”.
The UK-start-up, which has been developing the “world’s first modular smartwatch” since 2013, will use the funding to help get the concept built, and shipped, with the company having taken pre-orders for the device for some time.
Based on modularity, the smartwatch is customisable, allowing users to change different modules on the strap that are built to provide different technologies, including GPS tracking, e-health monitoring, NFC payments, fitness capabilities and even extra battery capacity.
Speaking to Mobile World Live in an exclusive interview ahead of the launch, Tahmasebzadeh said the company is already working with “1,500 developers to develop different modules, including two mobile operators to provide cellular connectivity direct from the watch”.
BLOCKS was originally inspired by Google’s Project Ara modular smartphone, and its core will run on a modified version of Android Lollipop. The company announced earlier this year it has also got Qualcomm on board, with the Snapdragon 400 chipset set to power the device’s core module.
Tahmasebzadeh revealed the company’s initial goal is to raise roughly $250,000 from next week’s campaign, but is confident it will reach six figures, “given the amount of interest we’ve had already in the concept.”
“BLOCKS is future proofed,” he said. “Compared to something like the Apple Watch, you can constantly update the core of a BLOCKS watch without having to replace the device. This means we put the users in control of what they want from their device, and as it’s open source, we are allowing the world to develop this device.”
To read our exclusive interview with Tahmasebzadeh, click here.