“Time is important to me, sometimes my life depends on it”

I have discovered the ‘Swiss Army Knife’ of watches made by the innovative Swedish company Kronaby.

Many of my friends have smartwatches: they range from simple activity trackers to full-on wrist-mounted mini-computers and I totally appreciate the benefits of always being connected and available in this 24-7 world but sometimes I just want to, or need to, avoid the distraction of constantly checking emails, social media posts, incoming phone calls and text messages. Sometimes, often, I want to filter information out and only receive the information that’s relevant or important.

And I still like a watch to look like a watch and not a mini-computer.

Then a few weeks ago I was introduced to the range of smart watches from Kronaby and everything changed.

Firstly and importantly for me, the Kronaby watch that I wear – the Kronaby Apex – actually looks and feels like a high quality traditionally styled watch. The black face and polished steel casing work in perfect aesthetic harmony and the quality suede strap gives an essential and stylish finishing touch.

Then there’s the technical bit – it’s a smartwatch.

The Kronaby connects with an app on my iPhone (also available for Android) which provides me with a whole host of features and very useful and usable functions.

Because I’ve only had the Kronaby watch for a comparatively short time I’ve only just start scraping the surface of what this watch can do, but I’ll mention a few functions and features that I find particularly useful and even rely on already.

I often have my phone set to ‘silent mode’, particularly when I’m working but with the Kronaby I can still receive a notification of an incoming call because I can set the watch to vibrate (VERY discretely) on my wrist as an alert. Then it gets even more intelligent, because using the app I can pre-programme the watch to ignore all other calls only notifying me if pre-selected numbers call and with those pre-programmed numbers I can even assign a level of priority o’one, two or three’ light buzzes or vibrations on my wrist. Awesome.

That same model of pre-programmable ‘priority alarm’ functionality can also be applied to text messages, emails and even social media interactions.

In short, this means that I can remain totally connected to the outside world whenever and however I need to be, but without the constant distraction of having to look at a physical object.

Another function that I use quite a lot already is the one-touch ‘remember this spot‘ button. One of the pushers on my watch, if depressed, marks my location on a kind of ‘GPS pin’. Two weeks ago I was working at a huge trade show with Karrimor SF and because the trade show was huge, the car parking areas was absolutely vast. As I stepped out of my car I simply pressed the button on my watch and then, when I was ready to leave some eleven hours later, the app on my phone guided me efficiently back to the exact location of my car.

 Much of what I do involves sharing of information on many levels, from developing material for schools and other education facilities following my activities to creating content for sponsors and partners and often that material, or content, involves self-shot images and videos. Now, using a ‘pusher’ on my watch, I can activate the camera on my iPhone remotely so that I can capture images and videos without having to wait for a ‘self-shot-timer’ countdown (and I always feel a bit gorky when I’m stood smiling at a camera as I wait for the ten second countdown to end!).

The activity tracker is something that I thought I’d never use, but I do – constantly! I’ve set an audacious activity goals which I’ve chosen to do outside of any programmed physical activity such as training and usual dog walking. The purpose behind my goal is to remind me to step away from my keyboard and increase my activity levels.

In fact,  when I started using the Kronaby as an activity tracker I sparked quite a heated a social media debate (Twitter and Facebook) about the best way to actually use an activity tracker. There’s no correct answer, just whatever works best for the individual!

There’s a fantastic function the watch called ‘Walk me Home‘ which I haven’t yet used, but I have no doubt that I will in some locations. When you depress a pusher on your Kronaby watch, a pre-selected friend will be able to start tracking your location through their maps app which is a fantastic feature for personal security, particularly when travelling through or into unknown towns and cities. There’s also an emergency function so that you can alert your ‘friend’ if you find yourself in need of emergency help; the function will mark your location and transmit it to your friend so that they can call emergency services and direct them straight to you.

Other features and functions that I haven’t used yet include a ‘find my phone’ button (which may very well come in useful!), remote music volume control, ‘IFTTT’,second time zone, timer, stopwatch, activity reminder, date and loads more that I haven’t yet discovered!

Even when I’m not on an adventure I work globally; conference calls with overseas companies, classroom teaching sessions around the world using various technology platforms, writing deadlines and emails 24/7 so time is important to me. And when I’m away on an adventure time is just as important, in fact sometimes my life depends on it.

Kronaby have created a brilliant range of watches to suit most tastes, and every one of them gives the wearer the ability to be connected but not distracted. You can find out more on the Kronaby website.

Follow me on Twitter, Instagram and now Snapchat where you can find me as @ExplorerJust