Normally, when you think of a smartwatch, you imagine something sleek-looking like the Apple Watch. Casio, however, is going in a completely different direction with its new rugged-looking Rangeman G-Shock wearable.
There will be two models at launch: the Rangeman GPR-H1000-1 and the GPR-H1000-9. They’re both made from a “bio-based resin” with intricately placed metal guards around the watch face. These protect the more delicate parts of the smartwatch, like the main control button, sensors, and GPS antenna, from impacts. The buttons themselves are made from stainless steel and come “equipped with gasket fittings” to stop contaminants like mud or dust from getting in. Casio specifically designed the Rangeman duo for the outdoor enthusiast or athlete looking for a wrist assistant that won’t break down in the face of adventure.
Inside each device is a series of sensors that track your bodily functions. It can keep tabs on your heart rate via an optical heart rate sensor. It has an accelerometer for analyzing movement and a gyroscope for swimming. The last sensor, according to Casio, can follow and track how many times you’ve swam around in the pool.
What’s more, the Rangeman series has robust GPS functionality. Not only does it come with a compass, it houses a thermometer, altimeter, and barometer to inform you of changes in the environment. Having an altimeter and barometer may seem excessive to some, but they’re intended for the nine activities supported by the smartwatches.
These activities include biking, trail running, open-water swimming, and gym workouts if you decide to exercise indoors for once. On the topic of open water, the wearables sport a tide graph letting you know when the tide will be high or low so you can “get the most out of water sports.”
Other notable features include analysis tools that show how much strain you’re putting on your body, self-management tools for measuring how well (or poorly) you recover, and on-device solar charging for the battery.
Are there any differences between the two models?
We compared the devices side by side and couldn’t detect any major differences between the two. They’re the same size, same weight, and have the same features and hardware. The only thing that’s different, as far as we could tell, is that the GPRH-1000-1 is black while the GPRH-1000-9 is a bright, banana-yellow. So we’ve reached out to Casio asking if either smartwatch has something unique to it or if it really is just the color. This story will be updated at a later time.
The Rangeman G-Shock wearables are available for pre-order on Casio’s website with a $500 price tag. No word on when the smartwatches will officially launch, but news site Hypebeast states the devices will come out in Japan on January 19. So we could see a similar release date for the United States.
Update: A company representative got back to us and confirmed that the only difference between the two models is their respective colors. They were unable to confirm the exact release date for the US but did state the Rangeman G-Shock duo will launch in the UK for £450 on January 19.
If you looking for an athletically inclined wearable that isn’t so rugged, check out TechRadar’s list of the best running watches.
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