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The Monohm Runcible: a smartphone pocket watch

Here’s a smart new idea – a retro-styled smartphone which looks like a pocket watch.

The Monohm Runcible is an innovative new gadget which is designed to span the gap between a smartphone and wearable, which the company hopes will usher in a “post-smartphone era”, no less.

It is, essentially, a palm-sized disc with a wooden rear which looks like a pocket watch, or indeed as Monohm puts it, the gadget is modelled on “the compact, the compass, [or] the magical stone in your hand”. There’s certainly something very satisfying about the retro look of the thing.

There’s a display on the front, along with a camera nestled in the wood finish on the rear, and the device has a nice hefty feel, according to C-Net. You can use it to browse the web (it supports LTE and Wi-Fi), make calls and texts – everything a normal smartphone would do, save for run apps. In the latter respect, you’re limited to web services – the device runs Firefox OS.

The idea is for a simpler digital life, and indeed the Runcible won’t ever beep at you, send notifications or otherwise demand your attention – it’ll simply sit quietly in your pocket, and tell you the time when you glance at it (the default for the display isn’t a home screen, but a watch face). On top of this, thanks to its streamlined nature it has a claimed four day battery life, which is certainly an added attraction.

Monohm states: “Just as the truth about time is available on a legacy timepiece, Runcible distils your Digital Life for you in clean, quiet, glanceable ways. Beautifully designed and built to last, Runcible is the premier device for the post-smartphone era.”

We rather like this idea, and Monohm will be showing off its new invention at MWC next week – it’ll be interesting to see the gadget in action.

You can sign up to pre-order the device now, with pre-orders opening on a “rolling basis in the coming weeks”, the company notes. Runcible will be released later this year.

Darren Allan

Darran has over 25 years of experience in digital and magazine publishing as a writer and editor. He's also an author, having co-written a novel published by Little, Brown (Hachette UK). He currently writes news, features and buying guides for TechRadar, and occasionally other Future websites such as T3 or Creative Bloq and he's a copy editor for TechRadar Pro. Darrran has written for a large number of tech and gaming websites/magazines in the past, including Web User and ComputerActive. He has also worked at IDG Media, having been the Editor of PC Games Solutions and the Deputy Editor of PC Home.