Cherry Mobile G1 Smartwatch Price Php 1,699, Specs, Features : First WatchPhone by a Local Electronics Company

Filipino tech company Cherry Mobile refuses to be left behind by foreign phone manufacturers in the wearable technology race. In fact, earlier this month, CM finally released its very first version of a smartwatch or "watch phone".

The Cherry Mobile G1 wristwatch with full handset functionality - putting it a step ahead of other smartwatches that you can't use to make calls or send text messages on its own - features a 1.44-inch TFT resistive touch LCD display encased in a hard plastic body and a pair of soft rubber straps.

Cherry Mobile G1

When you slide it up, it reveals an alpha-numeric keypad, and the 4-way navigation buttons -- which, while cute, may prove challenging to use if you have large fingers like me. Nonetheless, I do appreciate the fact that CM did its best to add these hardware buttons to the device.

The watch phone has a VGA camera found on its right side. For those wanting to be like James Bond, I guess it would be ideal for use as spy camera. However, expect grainy images because of the low resolution. The power button and the volume rocker are also found on the same side as the camera while you'll find the microUSB port for charging on the left side.

The device is powered by a 400 mAh battery, which is supposedly just right for a device with but a 1.44-inch display. I kinda wish the pack was bigger, though. Other than these, it offers the usual functionality of feature phones including Bluetooth connectivity, music and video player, FM radio and it even has dual SIM functionality. The phone also serves as a mass storage device with its microSD card slot supporting up to 8GB.

I think it's great that local brand has mustered enough chutzpah to release a wearable technology such as this to directly compete (at least, in terms of product offering) with foreign brands. G1's features may not be at par with the more expensive ones by the giant international electronics companies but considering its price, the CM's first smartwatch may well be the perfect gizmo for budget-conscious consumers who want a watch and a phone in one device minus the hassle of carrying two gadgets separately.

The watch phone comes with Bluetooth headset (that should come in handy when making calls) and of course, a charger. Its suggested retail price is Php 1,699 and is now available in all Cherry Mobile stores and kiosks near you!

Mark of TP: I've always said that 2014 will be the year of octa-core smartphones and tablets as well of wearable gadgets like smartwatches and glasses. It's so nice to see a local player finally embrace this technology and even offer it to consumers at such a low price. I'm sure that the CM G1 is just the first of the many, many smartwatches from various companies that will be arriving this 2014 and onwards. Some will be more powerful and feature-packed than others but expect those to be more expensive as well.

What do you think TP friends? All of its features considered, do you think Cherry Mobile G1 will do well in the market? Do you think CM priced it just right? Should other local electronics companies follow suit and release their own version of the smartwatch? Tell us what you think!

Dino Prestado, TechPinas Writer Fellow#TPWriterFellows Batch 1 Member and DOST Scholar from Bicol University, Dino Prestado, is a High School Chemistry and Physics teacher. He holds a Master's Degree in Physics Education and is a Full-time technology and gadget enthusiast.