Smartwatches are given a design twist by Pininfarina

Pininfarina’s new Senso smartwatches by Globics tread the line between form and function

(Image credit: Pininfarina)

In the past, entering the smartwatch market presented a series of compromises for brands keen to incorporate easy-to-use tech into classic watch designs. This isn’t the case anymore, with a plethora of new watches ticking both functionality and form boxes, with an added host of extra benefits. Take Pininfarina, whose new Senso smartwatches by Globics effortlessly borrow from classic watchmaking and automotive design codes while offering useful features, including the ability to track vital signs for a month from just an hour-long charge. Here, Sebastien Sauvage, creative director of Globics Technology, gives us an insight into the process.

Behind the design of Pininfarina Senso smartwatches


(Image credit: Pininfarina)

Wallpaper*: Can you tell us a bit about what inspired the design of these pieces?

Our hybrid watch design draws inspiration from Pininfarina's rich design heritage, encompassing design language and details of their most iconic designs. The sleek lines, aerodynamic curves, and attention to detail that define Pininfarina's work guided our entire design process.

We incorporated design elements that pay homage to Pininfarina's legacy. For instance, The lugs profile with a cutout is referencing to the rims of their legendary cars, adding a unique touch to our timepiece. Additionally, the dial evokes the elegance and precision of a Pininfarina-designed car dashboard, featuring a clean and minimalist layout for readability and luxury finishes for refinement.

By combining these design influences, we have created a hybrid watch that seamlessly integrates classic elegance with cutting-edge technology. It captures the timeless beauty and craftsmanship of Pininfarina's designs while offering a functional and intuitive timekeeping experience.

Our goal was to honor Pininfarina's design heritage while infusing our own unique vision, resulting in a remarkable timepiece that stands out in style and performance.

W*: How do they nod to classic Pininfarina design codes?

Our hybrid watch pays homage to classic Pininfarina design codes in several ways. Firstly, the sleek and aerodynamic lines that define Pininfarina's iconic cars are echoed in the overall silhouette of our timepiece. The smooth curves and elegant contours evoke a sense of timeless beauty and sophistication.

Furthermore, the lugs profile with the cutout on our hybrid watch is reminiscent of the rims found on some of Pininfarina's most legendary automobiles. This design element serves as a direct reference to the classic Pininfarina aesthetic, showcasing our commitment to capturing the essence of their design language.

The dial of our hybrid watch is another significant nod to Pininfarina's classic design codes. Inspired by the precision and elegance of Pininfarina car dashboards, we have crafted a dial that reflects their minimalist and functional approach. The arrangement of sub-dials, markers, and hands follows the principles of clarity and readability, mirroring the timeless design philosophy of Pininfarina.

Moreover, the intricate details and finishes of our hybrid watch evoke the craftsmanship and attention to detail that are hallmarks of Pininfarina's designs. From the choice of high-quality materials to the meticulous finishing touches, every element is designed to reflect the same level of excellence seen in Pininfarina's classic creations.

By incorporating these design codes, our hybrid watch becomes a visual tribute to the iconic Pininfarina style. It celebrates the enduring legacy of Pininfarina's classic designs and translates them into a contemporary timepiece that captures the essence of their timeless beauty and sophistication.

In summary, our hybrid watches nods to classic Pininfarina design codes through its sleek silhouette, the lugs profile inspired by iconic car rims, the dial evoking the elegance of Pininfarina dashboards, and the meticulous attention to detail throughout the timepiece. It is a testament to our admiration for Pininfarina's design language and our commitment to honoring their classic design codes in our own unique way.


(Image credit: Pininfarina)

W*: What were the main challenges you encountered in the creation?

We take great pride in our commitment to creating a timepiece of extraordinary quality, utilizing materials and processes commonly found in luxury timepieces. However, during the manufacturing process, we encountered specific challenges that required extensive effort and iteration to overcome.

One challenge we faced was related to the PVD coating on the case. Certain shades of the coating were found to have an impact on the sensors and conductivity, which interfered with accurate ECG readings. To address this issue, we had to redesign the coating process and create numerous samples to find the optimal balance. Each iteration involved careful testing and adjustments to ensure the highest level of functionality and performance.

Another significant challenge was incorporating see-through lugs into the design. This required additional CNC processes and meticulous attention to detail to balance the size and structural integrity of the lugs. We aimed to maintain both a visually appealing aesthetic and a durable construction, which demanded careful engineering and rigorous testing throughout the design process.

On the software side of development, we faced challenges related to battery optimization and creating a stable user experience through the app. Achieving a month-long battery life while ensuring accurate and reliable performance required multiple iterations and optimizations. Our team worked tirelessly to refine the software algorithms and enhance the user interface, ensuring a seamless and efficient user experience.

Despite these challenges, our dedication to creating a timepiece of exceptional quality and functionality drove us to overcome each obstacle. The countless hours spent on research, design iterations, and testing have resulted in a hybrid watch that combines the finest materials, meticulous craftsmanship, and cutting-edge technology. We are proud to offer our customers a timepiece that not only embodies the spirit of luxury but also provides an accurate, stable, and remarkable user experience.

Hannah Silver is the Art, Culture, Watches & Jewellery Editor of Wallpaper*. Since joining in 2019, she has overseen offbeat design trends and in-depth profiles, and written extensively across the worlds of culture and luxury. She enjoys meeting artists and designers, viewing exhibitions and conducting interviews on her frequent travels.