Streacom has announced the launch of pre-orders for the VU1 external watchfaces, which display data on various PC metrics and bring an interesting retro vibe to the table.
According to the company, “The VU1 was inspired by a hobbyist project called CAPS which used analogue dials to show network, RAM, CPU and GPU activity.” The VU1 name a reference to the standard ‘VU – Volume Unit’ labelling on audio gauges and a phonetic play on the word ‘view’ as it will be used to view real-time data.
The company will produce two types of devices: HUB and DIAL, and while they have the same design and construction, the HUB has an additional USB port to connect to a device that will supply power and data, such as your PC or Raspberry Pi. Data is displayed on the e-ink display and the dial face RGB illumination.
The VU1 features a lightweight, platform-agnostic Server App that runs in the background on your local device to control the dials and act as gatekeeper to all other applications/data sources that have suitable information to display. Rather than developing a parallel or competing application for every possible use case (which would be impossible as there are so many), our focus is on ensuring the ease of integration with the Server App. It uses the industry standard REST API making it easy for 3rd party developers and the VU1 community to create new and innovative uses for the dials.
The VU1 was envisioned to be primarily used as a desk accessory and features anti-slip strips on the bottom for this purpose and to allow stacking. Every VU1 also includes an angled stand that provides an alternative viewing angle. In addition to the ‘typical’ desk placement, the M3 mounting point on the back allows the VU1 to be secured to other surfaces or devices.
Pre-orders are now open with shipping expected to start at the end of December 2023.