WHO, WHAT, WEARABLE
If the Apple Watch is the Swiss Army knife of smartwatches—stuffed to the gills with tools, both pragmatic and superfluous—the sleek new Nowa Superbe hybrid watch is a hand-carved vintage switchblade: Its applications are few, but it’s swimming in style. And really, how many jobs do we need to assign our smartwatches? Eric Gizard, the respected French artist and designer who cofounded Nowa and designed its first collection of hybrid watches, is a devotee of simplicity in all areas, especially technology: “Smartwatches are too complicated,” he asserts. “I just need a slim watch that makes a fashion statement and automatically sets time when I’m traveling—and nothing else.”
What it does: All Nowa watches tell time (analog movements are Swiss); track and record activities including steps, distance, calories burned, and sleep quality; automatically adjust to global time zones; remotely operate a phone’s camera; and alert users to incoming calls (only calls, not texts) with a subtle flashing light—no vibrating.
What we liked: Its killer looks. The sublimely squared-off dial marries minimalism with vintage watch aesthetics. It wears like an upscale analog timepiece—it’s slim but on the heavy side, with a fine-gauge stainless steel 20 mm rose gold mesh strap that boasts an easy quick-spring release.
Best features: The Superbe’s noiseless, motionless alerts make it easy to forget that you’re wearing a connected watch altogether—a plus for those averse to the category’s penchant for buzziness. And the hybrid runs up to eight months on a standard CR2025 watch battery, so there’s no fiddling around with USB cords or proprietary device chargers destined to disappear within the first year. ($189; nowa.watch)
SUPPLY IN DEMAND
Clean + Care Professional Ultrasonic Cleaner
Savvy jewelry retailers don’t just sell jewels, they also sell products that keep them sparkling. The Kingswood Co.’s Clean + Care Professional Ultrasonic Cleaner has “professional” in its title, but it’s priced and engineered for at-home use. The countertop gadget uses a 45kHz wave frequency calibrated specifically to clean delicate and intricate jewelry. The machine can be customized with a retailer’s logo and features a stainless steel 420 ml tank, a jewelry basket, and an optional jewelry touch-up brush and/or watch holder. Best of all, its complete cleaning cycle is a mere three minutes long—making it an attractive option for jewelers who are interested in offering gratis in-store jewelry cleanings but often feel strapped for time. ($49.99–$59.99; thekingswoodcompany.com)