“Bargain” might not be the term anyone except the eBay seller who’s hawking this unique 1977 HP-01 calculator watch would use. It’s a small piece of geek history, styled like a Cylon in chrome with a red LED readout. According to the seller, what makes this particular HP-01 special is that it doesn’t sport a serial number and is badged as a model 1A-007.
Obviously the HP-01 isn’t a smartwatch by today’s standards, but in its day it was quite the advanced wearable. It was capable of doing more than simple operations. It could also do time and date calculations, including dynamic ones. Want to know how much money you were making every second? The HP-01 could do that. It could even tackle basic algebra and had stopwatch and alarm (which could be set to the exact second you desired) functions. It even came with a stylus, just like your Galaxy Note — you needed it to press the sunken buttons on the watch’s face.
And it definitely shared at least one characteristic of today’s smartwatches: battery life on the HP-01 was very much dependent on the amount of time the display was used.
No, you don’t have to empty your bank account to pick up one of these watches. There are plenty of others for sale on eBay in great condition for a lot less money. You can even score one for about the same price as the HP-01 sold for when it came out: about $600.