LilyGO's Upgraded TTGO T-Watch-2020 Ditches the Bulk, Puts Display, Sensors, and ESP32 On Your Wrist

Powered by an ESP32, the new T-Watch includes accelerometer, real-time clock, speaker, vibration motor, and an IR receiver.

Gareth Halfacree
a year ago β€’ Wearables / HW101
LilyGO's new T-Watch-2020 puts an ESP32 and a range of sensors on your wrist. (πŸ“·: LilyGO)

Chinese electronics specialist LilyGO has officially unveiled its TTGO T-Watch-2020, an upgraded version of its affordable ESP32-powered smartwatch β€” addressing some of the concerns with the bulky original.

LilyGO released the original TTGO T-Watch a year ago, with support for expanding on its built-in hardware with add-on boards β€” support, which sadly, made the core device rather too bulky to be comfortably worn long-term. The T-Watch-2020, by contrast, is a considerably slimmer affair β€” and one which the company is hoping will appeal to hackers and tinkerers.

Brought to our attention by CNX Software, the upgraded T-Watch is built around an Espressif ESP32 system-on-chip with 520kB static RAM (SRAM), 8MB pseudo-static RAM (PSRAM), and 16MB QSPI flash memory, all behind a 1.54" colour capacitive touch screen display. In addition to the display, feedback can be provided through a Class D amplifier and a built-in buzzer or vibration motor, and can receive infrared signals through its housing.

The SoC at its heart gives the T-Watch-2020 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.2 and Bluetooth Low Energy connectivity, and the company has added a BMA423 three-axis accelerometer β€” key for its target market of those looking to build fitness and gesture tracking systems. There's a PCF8563 real-time clock, and a micro-USB port for charging the 3.7V battery and programming the device β€” something the company has made easier with the publishing of a board definition and library compatible with the Arduino IDE.

The company has published example sketches compatible with both the original T-Watch and the new T-Watch-2020, while the earlier model was recently used to create a wearable high-altitude balloon (HAB) tracker by Dave Akerman β€” putting the information he needs on his wrist and available at-a-glance. Projects written for the original model should be directly compatible with the T-Watch-2020, except any relying on the now-removed expansion capabilities.

More information is available on the LilyGO GitHub repository, while the watch itself is available to purchase for $23.40 from the company's Tindie store.

Gareth Halfacree
Freelance journalist, technical author, hacker, tinkerer, erstwhile sysadmin. For hire:
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