Feeds

Sony allows hacking of its unloved SmartWatch

Flash your bits to take firmware off the wrist

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

Sony has opened the code for its SmartWatch and will allow developers to write their own firmware for the Android-powered device.

Sony's watch uses Bluetooth to connect to Android devices and sucks information from them so its 128x128 pixel screen can display nuggets of information like the arrival of new TXT messages or Tweets.

The $US99.99 device has not set the world on fire: a quick search of Google's Play store found just three third-party apps for the timepiece.

Perhaps that lack of attention is why Sony has announced what it's calling the “Open SmartWatch” project. Sony's spin is impressive: the company says the watch has been “open” since day one, inasmuch as it's possible to create apps for the device. Releasing a ”hacker guide” and firmware therefore represent “the next step to open up SmartWatch.”

The hacker's guide explains all sorts of specs about the device and will, Sony say, allow coders to create their own firmware. Doing so will mean you can wave goodbye to free repairs under the watch's warranty.

Sony doesn't imagine developers will offer their bespoke firmwares to civilians, saying “We recommend standard users not to flash alternative firmware, as it is not needed.” That message is re-enforced by this workshop exploring how to drive the SmartWatch with Arduino boards.

Sony's not saying if it plans to keep making the SmartWatch, but seeing as it's already been discounted from $129.99 to the current price and generates many fewer column inches than Apple's rumoured iWatch, a cynic could join the dots and imagine Sony is trying to find a way to offload remaining stock to a market that might actually be excited by the chance to play with a smart watch. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
Microsoft on the Threshold of a new name for Windows next week
Rebranded OS reportedly set to be flung open by Redmond
Business is back, baby! Hasta la VISTA, Win 8... Oh, yeah, Windows 9
Forget touchscreen millennials, Microsoft goes for mouse crowd
SMASH the Bash bug! Apple and Red Hat scramble for patch batches
'Applying multiple security updates is extremely difficult'
Apple: SO sorry for the iOS 8.0.1 UPDATE BUNGLE HORROR
Apple kills 'upgrade'. Hey, Microsoft. You sure you want to be like these guys?
ARM gives Internet of Things a piece of its mind – the Cortex-M7
32-bit core packs some DSP for VIP IoT CPU LOL
Lotus Notes inventor Ozzie invents app to talk to people on your phone
Imagine that. Startup floats with voice collab app for Win iPhone
'Google is NOT the gatekeeper to the web, as some claim'
Plus: 'Pretty sure iOS 8.0.2 will just turn the iPhone into a fax machine'
prev story

Whitepapers

A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.