The first few Android Wear watches from mid-2014 were watches in name only. They were really more like tiny screens strapped to your wrist that told the time. The design of Android Wear devices has evolved significantly since then, and now there are some that look like honest-to-goodness watches. The second gen Moto 360 and Huawei Watch are the most watch-like so far, but they aren't cheap. Let's see how they compare so you can (maybe) pick up the right one for you.
Motorola, the last American phone company that wasn't Apple (at least before they got bought by Google and then shuffled over to Lenovo), now has an American store front. Well, technically at least: it has exactly one retail store, which Motorola's PR team is calling an "experimental boutique." If you're in the Chicago area, where Motorola's US headquarters is located, you can check it out on Saturday. The store will open for full business a week later at 108 North State Street.
The Moto X series has been known for being a good deal when compared to other flagship phones. If you're OK with buying last year's model (which is still more than serviceable, and is scheduled to get a Marshmallow update at some point), Amazon is selling it for just $199.99 today. This is the American GSM version, so it should work on AT&T, T-Mobile, and similar MVNOs. It's a new phone featuring the stock 16GB of storage. The price is only valid for the next 16 hours (ending at 5 AM Eastern US time), so get an order in quickly if you want one.
Verizon has just started selling the DROID Turbo 2, but the camera experts at DxOMark got their hands on a unit early to test its capabilities, and the results are good. Motorola's newest Verizon-exclusive device scored an 84 in DxO's tests, which places it in the number four position.
The company didn't say much in the announcement. Actually, it didn't say anything. We're treated to a 'coming soon' page on Motorola's UK site (pictured above) and this YouTube video highlighting the phone's Moto ShatterShield display. Watch it fall. See how much better it sticks the landing than those other guys.
Oh, underneath that is a note: the phone is coming to Africa, the Asia-Pacific, Europe, the Middle East, and Latin America starting in November.
You can't get the new Moto X from any of the carriers directly, but Verizon does have two Motorola devices ready to go right now. The newly announced DROID Maxx 2 and Turbo 2 are on sale through Verizon's website and in stores. The Turbo 2 is the more expensive of the two, but the Maxx 2 isn't what I'd call cheap, either.
Verizon and Motorola assert that the new DROID Turbo 2's screen is shatterproof. According to a video from CNN, there might be something to that claim. In the clip, the phone suffers numerous falls from varying heights against different surfaces, gets run over by a bicycle, and meets the underside of a horse's hoof. And sure enough, it doesn't shatter.
Shatter-proof screen? Check. Ginormous battery? Check. High-end rear camera? Check. Latest version of Android? [???fix later]. This is the story of the DROID Turbo 2 and Maxx 2, which were just announced today, October 27th, 2015, 22 days after Android 6.0 Marshmallow's source code was made publicly available, and multiple months since OHA members have had development source available to them for updates and new devices. Can we see why this is a problem? I hope we can see why it is a problem.
Here's the thing, Motorola. You're already in hot water with loyal customers because of software updates, and many more such customers are now worried that their devices, too, will end up abandoned before their time.