First things first, I love my gadgets. I change my smartwatch at least yearly and I get bored quickly. I’ve recently had, in order:
1. Sony Smartwatch 2 – great starter smartwatch
2. Sony Smartwatch 3 – excellent value androidwear watch with GPS
3. Samsung Gear S2 – unique OS, unique design with rotating bezel
4. Apple Watch – briefly, just to try it and see what all the fuss was about
5. Pebble Time – hmmm, quirky! Still miss it 🙂
6. Moto 360 Gen 2
As you can see from the list, the Moto 360 Gen 2 is my current smartwatch of choice. I’ve sold all the others.
First things first, it’s an Androidwear watch. As such, ALL Androidwear watches do exactly the same thing because they all run the same interface. It’s not like your phone where each manufacturer can customise their own interface and you find that Sony runs pretty stock whereas Samsung heavily customise it with Touchwiz. Google don’t allow this, so each watch runs *exactly* the same software. They pretty much all have the same hardware too – minor differences like GPS on the Sony, ambient light sensors on some, not others etc, slightly different processor speeds and battery life, but all with the same ram and all doing the same thing. Therefore, you buy an Androidwear watch mainly on it’s looks.
Looks is the killer feature of this watch in my opinion. The Sony Smartwatch 3 might have had a GPS, but it was square and square means boring (in Androidwear circles), there’s only Sony and Asus doing a square watch and square screens are few and far between. All the good square screens are digital – try fitting a round analogue display on a square watch and you’ll soon see it looks awful.
Compared to the LG, it is thinner, lighter, nicer, more customisable – you can order it in many different colours – although I’m a tradittionalist and like plain black or plain silver – maybe gold.
I won’t compare it to the Apple watch. If you have an iPhone, get the Apple watch. Simple.
I will breifly mention the Pebble range. I liked it, it was fun and quirky, but quite limited and to be honest, I don’t see that they have a future. They keep going back to Kickstarter each time they want to launch a new watch because they don’t have the finances or financial backing to just do it. I see them going bust in a couple of years.
Now the Samsung Gear S2 is a completely different kettle of fish. I loved that watch. It looked fantastic, was fully waterproof, it had a rotating bezel to select stuff and I wrote a lovely review about it. However, after living with it for 6 months, the novelty of it had worn off – I quickly tired of showing it to people and them saying “that looks nice, what is it?” I found Samsung’s S voice tiresome – it just didn’t do half of what Google Now did. I found the notifications lacking. I thought I would enjoy reading all my emails and SMS on the watch, but I didn’t. Androidwear have it about right, you want a watch to give you instant notifications: traffic, weather, cricket scores, facebook messages, SMS. You don’t need anything else. But apart from the vast range of apps and games available to Androidwear (compared to Samsung), the think I missed the most was Google Now. I just couldn’t talk to the Samsung watch, but I talk to the Moto all the time – asking for directions, replying to texts whilst driving etc etc.
I can’t promise I’ll still have it in 2 years time, but for the time being, it is my watch of choice and I don’t see me changing any time soon and I certainly don’t see me moving away from Androidwear.
Some pics of the notifications and games etc are below.
If you have any questions about it, let me know – especially if you are torn between the Gear S2 and this – I’ll try and be impartial and help you decide. If this review helped, let me know by voting it helpful.