Sony’s e-paper watch was hiding in plain sight all along while rumors were circling about the new device. The wearable e-paper device, called the FES Watch, was under development through a company called Fashion Entertainments, which turned out to be associated with the Japanese electronics and entertainment giant, reports the Wall Street Journal.
The wearable uses e-paper technology, such as the kind present on the $99 Pebble and the Amazon Kindle tablet. But instead of using e-paper just for the watch face, it uses it for both the face and its wristband surface. This lets the watch take on multiple designs and appearances with just the tap of a button.
Though rumors of the device have surfaced only recently, it was sitting on a Japanese crowdfunding site as early as September, with the project raising more than $23,000.
“We can confirm that a project team named Fashion Entertainments located in the new business creation department of Sony Corporation is working on prototypes that use electronic paper including a wristwatch,” a Sony spokesperson told PCWorld.
Sony hasn’t confirmed a launch date for the watch, but the project’s crowdfunding site currently targets May 2015 for a release date.
“We hid Sony’s name because we wanted to test the real value of the product, whether there will be demand for our concept,” an unnamed source with the project told the Wall Street Journal.
The project is one of many currently under development at Sony’s new creative division, which aims at creating devices and products outside of the company’s current scope of products. The division is part of many moves by CEO Kazuo Hirai to reinvigorate Sony as it faces mounting losses from its struggling smartphone and television division.