Motorola Moto 360 Smartwatch Review

Motorola Moto 360 Smartwatch Stainless Steel and Heart Rate/Activity Tracker with Bluetooth Connectivity Compatible with Android 4.3+ Smartphones – Light Steel/Stone Leather Strap. I’ve worn a Seiko Kinetic for the past decade, and recently lost it. As some one who MUST wear a watch whenever he steps out of house, I consider myself fairly picky about watches. Although I’m a tech aficionado I wasn’t really too sold on the smartwatch concept (main issue being battery life – with my Seiko I didn’t even have to change the batteries as it was charged by my movement!). I did try the Pebble (I was one of the original Kickstarter backers) but that over time still lost to my Seiko (recharging issues).

Motorola Moto 360 Smartwatch

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Motorola Moto 360 Smartwatch Review

Heart Rate/Activity Tracker with Bluetooth Connectivity Compatible with Android 4.3+ Smartphones – Light Steel/Stone Leather Strap

I’ve worn the Moto 360 for about 3 weeks now, and I must say I’m more or less completely sold on the concept of a smartwatch now. Or at least, a smartwatch as designed/envisioned by Motorola.

Here’s why Motorola Moto 360 Smartwatch does it for me:

Design:

Personally, I think it is the only watch on the market currently that actually looks like a watch. All other smartwatches (including the Apple watch) feel like you’re taking a hit on design and aesthetics because “oh look it’s a smartwatch”! Which I’m not really happy with, because as mentioned earlier, I wear a watch because I want to wear a watch, not because I want a smartwatch.

So design and looking/feeling like a proper watch is important, and the Motorola Moto 360 Smartwatch delivers. The round face is brilliant, and the leather strap is surprisingly great.

I am a staunch fan of steel bracelets and I thought the first thing I’d do was to swap out the band (which you can do), but I tried the leather one and it swayed me – I’m keeping it as is. The only niggle I have is that the screen could have been sharper – the pampered consumer in me is now used to Retina-level displays wherever I go…

Battery life and recharging:

The issue around battery life for smartwatches in general is not that it’s short, but rather that it’s a pain in the butt to recharge.

For me, Moto 360 solved that by making charging as simple as putting it on a pretty stand. Which is what the charging cradle is. This basically means I don’t really have to ‘remember’ to charge my watch (as opposed to Pebble, where I would have to remember to charge when battery runs out after a week or so), as long as I stick to my routine. And we all do have routines – wallet and keys in box, watch on stand, never have issues.

Of course this is just my personal experience, but I think the stand makes 95% of all battery problems go away, as long as the battery has more than enough for a full day’s work. And it does – I spent one day just syncing and resyncing (changing watch faces) and it still didn’t give up the ghost until I was in bed. I don’t track battery life now because it simply isn’t a problem.

Customizable watch faces:

Oh, the possibilities. There’s an app called Facer in the Android Play Store that allows you to either download user-created watch faces, or simply create your own. You can add in dates, weather, your current position – possibilities are endless, and there are some really striking designs you can download (or come up with). I really think design-wise we are just scratching the surface here – over time we will really see how far outside the box we can go in terms of telling time, as we’re not constrained to mechanical limitations any more.

As an extension of your smartphone:

So far the most useful feature I’ve used it for is for one-word responses to texts and messages. The watch notifies you if you get a message, and you can have an option to reply with a short pre-determined message (i.e. OK, Yes, No, etc). You can also do a longer reply by speaking to your watch, which I’ve tried (a bit self-consciously) and it works pretty well. I will still whip out my phone for long replies, but for a sentence or two it certainly works.

Fitness apps:

I don’t ordinarily wear fitbits and other fitness bands, but I’m really enjoying the fact that I can track my steps and heart activity on a daily basis. The heart tracking activity (which allows you to see what % of heart rate zones did you spend your day in) hasn’t really changed my life drastically, but being able to see the total number of steps you’ve done day to day has encouraged me to walk a lot more!

Conclusion:

It took me a few days to familiar with the smartwatch concept. In fact, after day one I told my wife I would probably want to return it. But after a few days, discovering more apps like Facer, and settling into new habits (leather strap, nightstand placement), I’m completely sold.And the Android Wear software will only improve – I feel like it’s the early days of the iPhone/Android phones where we’re only starting with what it can do.

We gave the Motorola Moto 360 Smartwatch 3 Stars Tech Review

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