The Facebook Watch is approaching, according to two rounds of leaks this year. The device – or at least one iteration of the device – is supposed to act primarily as a communications device, complete with cameras, microphones, and a video calling display. This device will not likely work without a wirelessly connected smartphone*, and won’t likely have much function outside its uses with Facebook apps.
According to a report on The Verge, the watch created by Facebook will have “a display with two cameras that can be detached from the wrist for taking pictures and videos.” One of two cameras will appear near or behind the display, lending itself to selfie/video calls with the display. The other camera is tipped to appear on the other side of the watch, toward the wrist, usable only when detached from the watch strap.
This watch is tipped to work with a heart rate monitor and sensors that’ll allow it to be used as a fitness tracking monitor. *UPDATE: Facebook is said to be reaching out to mobile data carriers in the USA to potentially include 4G LTE data on the watch. This would require that the user have a data plan for the watch on its own, unless a WiFi-only version is also available. This watch was previously leaked as a social media-focused device.
A Facebook watch would be the latest in a line of devices made by Facebook to move beyond the software and services market. While every phone is the Facebook phone, it’s increasingly clear that Facebook wants to move beyond their need for Apple and/or Google to provide the platforms on which Facebook is served to social media users.
They tried to make a Facebook phone with HTC before – it didn’t do particularly well. Now they want to attempt to make a device with Facebook at the center of its existence, with functionality that’s significantly different from that of a standard smartwatch or smartphone.
The Apple Watch stays attached to your wrist while in use, has no cameras, and functions as part of the Apple hardware ecosystem. The Facebook watch will likely focus on ways to keep users involved in the Facebook social network as much as possible, with cameras as accessible as possible at all times. Samsung and Google recently announced they were joining forces for wearables – so Facebook’s entry might be right on time… or woefully badly timed – we shall see!
It’s possible this new Facebook watch device could be revealed officially by Facebook in the summer of the year 2022. We almost certainly won’t hear from Facebook about the watch here in 2021, outside of unofficial leaks.