Runcible Is a Strange but Beautiful Watch-Phone Hybrid

Runcible Is a Strange but Beautiful Watch-Phone Hybrid

There was a time, not so very long ago, when phones came in all shapes and sizes. Anyone remember the Motorola Pebble? Clamshells and slide-out phones were resigned to history once the touchscreen took over. But in the name of standing out, manufacturers are once again starting to experiment with the form of their devices. Notably, Samsung has just released the curved-screen Galaxy S6, but it was far from the wackiest handset on display at the Mobile World Conference this past week. That award goes to the Runcible, a round hybrid of a pocket-watch and a smartphone.

Runcible Is a Strange but Beautiful Watch-Phone Hybrid

Study the idea, though, and you realize it isn’t as weird as it sounds. Although virtually no-one uses a watch on a chain nowadays, we all use our phones in exactly the same way: as timepieces that live in our pockets, to be extracted when we need to tell the time. Equally, the Runcible is designed to offer an antidote to the overwhelming flow of notifications and bothersome information that our handsets provide us with. It harks back to a time when things were slower, more peaceful.

Runcible Is a Strange but Beautiful Watch-Phone Hybrid

Physically, the Runcible also has a retro feel. Its circular screen is primarily for showing the time, but it also doubles as a touchscreen for control. You can make calls and send texts from this device, and it connects to the internet. Its curved wooden reverse even has the lens of a camera peeping out, and it sports NFC and Bluetooth connectivity. But this particular version of Firefox OS does not really run apps in the same way a high-powered smartphone does. You can install watch faces that tell you when your social networks are becoming active, or an on-screen compass to show the way to your next destination. The whole idea of this device, however, is to make browsing impossible when you should be talking to your dinner date.

Much like any high quality Swiss-made timepiece, Runcible’s creator, Monohm, wants owners to pass this handset through generations. Its innards have been made suitably repairable and upgradable for this reason.

Runcible Is a Strange but Beautiful Watch-Phone Hybrid

Currently, the Runcible is at the pre-pre-order stage, so it is not clear how much it will cost. Whatever it eventually retails for, I can see that a small band of busy, style-conscious folks may take to this new category of device. Is it a new kind of smartwatch? Or an “anti-smartphone?” Who knows. It is just mighty attractive.

To register an interest in the Runcible, head to Monohm’s website.

Mark is best known for writing about apps, but he also loves the tactile, hardware side of technology. Being a professional photographer, he's pretty handy with a camera, and he's a self-confessed tweetaholic.
Join the Discussion

You Might Also Like

This wearable air purifier gives instant allergy relief in any indoor space

This wearable air purifier gives instant allergy relief in any indoor space

Do you struggle with airborne allergies like pet fur, pollen, mold, or dust mites? If you do, there’s good news on the way because there’s a brand-new product to make your life easier. Respiray Wear A+ is an allergen-filtering wearable..
May the 4th be with you: must-have Star Wars gadgets and accessories

May the 4th be with you: must-have Star Wars gadgets and accessories

You have your lightsaber ready, and your Star Wars movies all lined up on Disney+. But have you bought yourself—or the superfan in your life—a new collectible in honor of the day? If not, have a look at these must-have..
Mother’s Day gift guide: 10 great gadgets she’ll love

Mother’s Day gift guide: 10 great gadgets she’ll love

Mother’s Day is just around the corner, and if you’re looking for the perfect gift for the mother in your life, you’re reading the right blog. In our Mother’s Day gift guide, we’ve rounded up some of the top gadget..
The best window cleaning robots for a sparkling home

The best window cleaning robots for a sparkling home

Spring has arrived, and with sunnier weather, you may have realized just how dirty your windows are. But window washing is serious work, what with setting up a ladder and squeegeeing hard-to-reach areas. And hiring a company for the job..
10 Unbelievably useful summer gadgets you need for 2024

10 Unbelievably useful summer gadgets you need for 2024

Summer comes and goes, but your warm-weather gear should last a few seasons, at least. As an editor at Gadget Flow, I aim to scout out products I think you’ll get the most mileage from. And today, I’m compiling my..
20 Gadgets under $20: the best tech gadgets to buy on a budget

20 Gadgets under $20: the best tech gadgets to buy on a budget

Need a last-minute gift? Want to upgrade a few things around the house? Whatever your goals, stay on budget with these 20 gadgets under $20. Yes, even when everything’s getting more expensive, you can get great prices on Wyze products,..