You love the luxury and refinement of your mechanical wrist watches, especially if they’re crafted by the likes of MontBlanc or Seiko, but also feel like keeping up with technology? MontBlanc has now launched its earlier announced Tie Walker Urban Speed e-Strap series, an OLED system embedded into your watch straps that displays notifications. It will be available in three models- automatic, UTC with second time zone, and a three hand chronograph.

The electronics are sealed inside steel cases with rubber gaskets that will have straps that are interchangeable and adjustable. The straps will be made of leather made by MontBlanc Pelleteria in Florence. The upper strap surface will be infused with carbon, giving it a distinctive appearance and making it stronger and impervious to fire and water.

It will be Bluetooth enabled, pairable with selected Android and Ios devices. So, you can monitor incoming calls, read text, mail, check your social media updates. And it can also act as a remote for music players and cameras. Oh, and it can measure distances travelled, calories burned and there is a FindMe function that can find a paired phone within a radius of 100 feet. Phew, that’s a lot of functionality. When the pieces release this year, they’ll cost $300.

Luxury high end merging with tech? Up for contention, really. With smart watches around the corner, it is pretty clear where the tides will sway, and it is market sensible to make a move like this. MontBlanc is touting itself as “the first luxury brand to combine wearable technology with fine watchmaking.”

But the selling point of mechanical luxury watches is exactly that- the refinement. Not sure if the two should mix. When the pieces release this year, they’ll cost $300.


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