Michael Kors launches wearable tech line

The Michael Kors Access Bradshaw Smartwatch costs $599.
The Michael Kors Access Bradshaw Smartwatch costs $599. PHOTO: MICHAEL KORS ACCESS

If leather totes were the making of New York fashion designer Michael Kors in the 2000s, the next logical step in his conquering of the accessories world is to dip his toes into technology.

The brand's new wearable technology accessories line was launched on Tuesday - beginning with the Michael Kors Access Smartwatch at $599 for the men's and women's basic models.

Kors describes his relationship with the digital world: "I'm no tech geek. But I know what I want. I'm always on the move, on the Internet.

"I look at the calendar literally the night before. And I deal with what I'm dealing with. It gets all my attention. I'm not really multitasking. I do what I'm doing for the minute. And then I go to the next, and the next.

"Fortunately, I have a lot of energy. I need something that can move with me, help me organise but make me feel glamorous too."

Enter his smartwatch - in gold, rose and black options - with a touch-charge battery life of 24 hours and with interchangeable wriststraps ranging from sporty silicone to wizened leather and clinical steel, each costing from $89.

Kors' smartwatch - which appears hot on the heels of earlier trendsetters such as the Apple Watch, Samsung Gear S2 and Pebble - is Android- and iPhone-compatible, and syncs across several metres "from within your handbag".

It hosts the usual apps from maps to instant messaging to health trackers, but has a secret weapon in that it originates from a fashion house as opposed to a tech company.

The watchfaces can be configured to - as Kors hopes - infinite backgrounds. These range from traditional classic dials to digital displays with flashing diamonds. The dial colours also come in a variety of shades and can be tailored to individual fancy or to the watchstrap.

"To me, having something like the MK Access watch, you can change the pace, you can go to a party, you can go to the office, you can have a different look," Kors says.

"And you can tell the time. It can help you with your life."

The smartwatch is available at selected Michael Kors boutiques in Singapore, including the outlets at Mandarin Gallery, Marina Bay Sands and VivoCity.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 08, 2016, with the headline 'Michael Kors launches wearable tech line'. Print Edition | Subscribe