The HP smartwatch, officially dubbed the MB Chronowing, went on sale back in November: the result of a partnership between the computer giant and designer Michael Bastian. Or so we all thought.
Meta is the manufacturer behind the stylish M1 smartwatch and the report indicates several similarities between the MB Chronowing and the M1 – including almost identical charging connectors and FCC IDs.
Kovert Designs: Why Altruis is the product of Kate Unsworth's digital detox
Watch industry veterans Bill Geiser and David Rosales both worked with Fossil watches and were involved in Microsoft’s Spot wearables, before establishing Meta.
Just like Fossil, who make branded watches for the likes of Diesel and Armani, it seems as if Meta is prepared to keep its name out of the equation and let other brands, HP in this scenario, take the plaudits.
It might prove a clever move as wearable brands that would perhaps be unknown outside of tech circles are more likely to gain traction by dressing their hardware in more mainstream threads.
Fashion giant Guess and smartwatch maker Martian announced a partnership back in August and the smartphone industry has seen similar setups; HTC began life as an OEM, making smartphones for third parties, before becoming an award winning brand in its own right.
Essential reading: Fashion tech from big name labels
The MB Chronowing comes in two editions; a standard one that will set you back $349, and a limited edition one with an Apple Watch style sapphire crystal glass face and an alligator strap that costs $649.
We’ve contacted Meta for a comment, we’ll update this story when we hear back.
First look: Alcatel OneTouch Watch review
How we test