Microsoft is known for crushing dreams of things that could have been. It is also known for putting out products that perhaps it should never have. The latter calls to mind the Zune, Windows Vista, and Windows RT. And, perhaps, this Xbox Watch that has popped up yet again. Dropped before it could take final form, what could have been Microsoft’s first smartwatch seemed to be ready for production. Perhaps it was for the best that it didn’t make it that far.
Granted, this is just a prototype, but a working one at that. It’s familiar design, similar to the first generation of Android smartwatches back in the day, suggests this could have been the final retail design. And just like the very first Android smartwatches, it was clunky, ugly, and unappealing.
And that was just the hardware. Software-wise, the Xbox Watch had a user interface composed of a scrolling row of squares, showing off Microsoft’s obsession with boxes. There isn’t much installed here and nothing works beyond the first tap. Actually, the smartwatch barely worked at all and the video below is a testament to the leakster’s patience at keeping the wearable powered on.
Microsoft eventually launched its own wearable, but one that didn’t compete directly with smartwatches. At least not in design. Unfortunately, the Microsoft Band didn’t last that long, but this Xbox Watch would have probably died within just months.