The French luxury brand is looking to corner the high-end connected watch market with its first ever smartwatch offering.
The Tambour is now the basis for the brand’s step into the future – its first ever connected watch intended for modern travelers.
Carrying the Tambour name, it makes sense that the watch would remain faithful to the spirit of the Maison’s founder, bringing creativity, art, and yes even practicality, to travel.
The new timepiece is also the product of a production chain that is all about travel. The watch was conceived in Paris, with a case made at the Louis Vuitton’s manufacturer in Switzerland. It also employs technology developed in California’s Silicon Valley in collaboration with Google and Qualcomm Technologies. And for the very first time, the watch can be used anywhere without restriction – even in China.
The end result is a watch that combines all of the technical capability of a smartwatch with the elegance that we’ve come to expect from the French Maison.
At just 42mm, the relatively compact case boasts a nice touchscreen powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon Wear 2100 platform. A perfect circle in form, it features the distinctive concave bezel borrowed from the Tambour Moon design. The case is available in either graphite, monogram or black options.
The watch is also highly customizable. Wearers can choose among 60 detachable straps – 30 created for men and 30 indented for the ladies. Of course, even more personalization is possible via the software. Thanks to Android Wear, for example, the wearer can customize among many different faces.
And because Louis Vuitton has always been a very travel-orientated company, the Tambour Horizon smartwatch is also a functional and trusty travel companion.
One feature, called “My Flight”, keeps departing travelers informed of their flight times, terminal and gate information, and reports of delays. These days, many airlines provide a similar service via SMS alerts to a mobile phone, but it’s still a welcome addition in case the feature is not offered.
Another exclusive function is the “City Guide”, which offers guided services edited by Louis Vuitton. Using geo-location, it’s meant to ensure that the traveler will not miss any of the must-see sights in the most visited cities in the world.
Being a traveler’s watch, the Tambour Horizon also has a GMT function via the 24 hour display on the rim of the dial. With a simple move, one can display the name of a major world city and make the corresponding time appear in the time zone of choice.
The watch doesn’t have much in the way of fitness features, however, which are common – or even prioritized - in smartwatches today. But this is no common Smartwatch. It sits at the high end of the spectrum, and with a price tag of about $3,000 USD I’m not sure how many people will be using it while they hit the gym.
All in, the Tambour Horizon is as much a statement piece as it is a connected watch. It’s definitely looking to compete for customers that find themselves in the market for something like the gold Apple Watch Edition. That’s not a huge market to be sure, but then again Louis Vuitton was never one for mass market objectives.