If you have an Asus ZenWatch 2 and are in need of a spare or replacement charger, then I've got some good news for you. You can now officially buy one on the Google Store. The thing has been sitting in the Google Store for a while now as a 'coming soon' item, but now it can finally be purchased for $14.99.
The charger comes with a wall unit and a detachable cord with a proprietary magnetic pogo pin charging tip. It's nice that the cord can be used independently from the base, allowing users to plug it into a computer or a multi USB charging hub.
The first gen Android Wear devices are getting a little long in the tooth, but in the electronics world, with age comes a dramatic drop in price. The smartwatch I have worn daily for the past 9 months is the Sony Smartwatch 3, and I have to say, I don't really feel any need to replace it.
The watch has great battery life, WiFi, GPS, and while the transflective display isn't the prettiest, it sure is functional for outdoor use. The water resistance and silicone band keep me from worrying about damaging it while working in the hospital and MicroUSB charging makes it the easiest Android Wear device to top off when out of the house.
TAG Heuer has now officially announced the most expensive smartwatch running Android Wear, which means (by the infallible logic of luxury watch enthusiasts) that it's also the best. To be fair, in terms of materials and technical hardware, the TAG Heuer Connected probably is the best Wear device at the moment: it uses a new-to-Wear 1.6GHz Intel Atom processor and 1GB of RAM, along with 4GB of storage and a 410mAh battery. That means it should be faster than most current Wear devices, and with double the memory, it might have significantly better performance. It had better: TAG's suggested price and the going rate on the online store is a whopping $1500.
Android Wear devices have gone from novelty to necessity for many of us Android lovers in the past year. They are just so doggone handy, and some of them also make quite a fashion statement. One of the better looking devices on the market is the second generation Moto 360.
The problem the 360 has, along with every other Android Wear device, is that the battery depletes rather quickly, especially when compared to a traditional watch. Fortunately, the watch is pretty easy to charge thanks to a handy dock that is like a tiny little throne for your 360.
Veteran Android users, particularly those who stick to Nexus devices, are well aware of the fact that you can usually flash OTA updates manually once someone pulls a link to the actual update file. This normally provides a much better option than waiting for your device to get the update sent to it, which could take weeks. Android Wear has this functionality as well, but each watch is a little different in terms of proper procedures for doing so. We're going to run a series of posts on how to manually flash updates to each Android Wear device that supports it (sorry, Moto 360 users) in the hopes of providing some clarity on the issue.
Can a grown-up company return to the kiddie pool of Kickstarter funding to help with its new product? Of course it can - this is how development works now! This morning the makers of Pebble announced Pebble Time, the company's second generation of Pebble hardware, launching exclusively through a Kickstarter funding campaign (like the record-breaking original two years ago). The company hit its modest $500,000 goal less than half an hour after posting the page.
The Pebble Time gets new hardware goodies like a color e-paper screen and microphone, enabling an experience that's more in line with what smartwatches have become over the last couple of years.
Android Wear has a lot of fine points, but there are a few things missing from the first round of devices. One of the more annoying shortcomings is the lack of a light sensor on the G Watch or the Gear Live. The Moto 360, however, will have a light sensor built in, according to Motorola's Cathay Bi.
If you've got one of those shiny new Android Wear watches to fiddle around with, you've probably noticed the sad state of custom watch faces. There are a few already in the Play Store, but they often don't work right. Google has finally provided an update for developers on what they should do about custom watch faces. Basically – don't make them yet.
All the custom watch faces we have right now are basically hacks that are using workarounds to show you the time. According to Google developer advocate Wayne Piekarski, Google is working on a new API for custom faces that should be ready soon, but in the meantime developers are advised to hold off.
Didn't make it to Google I/O? Well, Motorola wants you to get a closer look at the Moto 360 smart watch anyway. In a two minute video demo, we get to see a few watch faces, notifications, and more.
Of particular interest in this video is the way the display works. When not in use, the Moto 360 display appears to be on, but very dim. So you'd be able to look at your wrist and see the time without touching it. To wake the display, simply press the button on the side or tap the screen. It's not clear from the video if the display will be completely off when you arm is at your side, but that has been the belief recently.