Smartwatches were supposed to be the Next Big ThingTM a few years ago when Samsung launched the original Android-powered Galaxy Gear. That device came with a laundry list of problems, but the company quickly reassessed and got on board with Android Wear while also dabbling with the Tizen wearable OS. When Samsung quietly stepped back from Android Wear, many of us thought it was a mistake. With the release of the Gear Sport, it's looking like Samsung made the right call.
The Gear Sport is a followup to last year's Gear S3. Like that watch, the Sport has a round Super AMOLED display, a rotating bezel, and the Tizen wearable OS. Read More
I'll admit it here: I may work at Android Police, but I think Android Wear is terrible.
I'm not the type to poke away at a wrist-mounted touchscreen, and the last thing I want is yet another device to charge. So, I've been interested in hybrid smartwatches like the Skagen Connected line for some time. Although I went into this with plenty of optimism, I found the experience to be a bit lacking. Read More
It's getting increasingly hard to justify a smartwatch purchase when so many of them are launching with such high price tags. Paying $400 or $500 for a watch that works the same as one that costs half as much is a tough sell, not that a cheaper watch is an easy sell either. That's what makes the ZTE Quartz intriguing. This is an Android Wear device that costs less than $200 and has a dedicated cellular connection on T-Mobile.
The Quartz is a bit large and clunky, and it's missing some of the features you get with more expensive watches. However, the design is solid considering the price, and it runs Android Wear just as well as more expensive watches. Read More
Smartwatches haven't exactly taken off. In fact, a number of electronics companies have pulled back on plans for Android Wear including Motorola, Sony, and Asus. That's left fewer smartphone makers in the fray, but there are also fashion designers and traditional watch designers dabbling in Wear. We will see a lot more of these smartwatches in 2017, and one of them is the extremely spendy Tag Heuer Connected Modular 45. Read More
There's little denying that the Fitbit Alta HR is a reiterative product. It looks very similar to the regular Alta and a bit like a smaller Charge 2, but it sits somewhere between the two in terms of features. When it was announced last month, Fitbit called it the slimmest fitness tracker with continuous heart rate monitoring, a distinction that had to be made to justify the same $150 price as the Charge 2 while packing fewer options on paper.
I came to the Alta HR a bit skeptic. The Charge 2 was by far the most convincing Fitbit I'd ever used and even one of the best all-around activity trackers on the market. Read More
In the world of technology, it's rare that a successor product is actually worse than the one that preceded it.
Today is a rare day.
The Huawei Watch 2 is a step backward - multiple steps, even - from the original, even if it does claw back some of that lost ground with new features. The Huawei Watch 2 adds NFC, GPS, LTE, and Android Wear 2.0 to its repertoire, which all sounds well and good. Alas, it all feels for naught when it comes down to the final product experience. What it takes away is almost everything that made the original the de facto champion of the Android Wear world. Read More
Android Wear has been in a holding pattern since last year when Google announced that it was delaying the release of Wear 2.0. After months of re-working the software, Google unveiled Wear 2.0 alongside the LG Watch Style and Watch Sport. The smaller of the two was the one I had pinned my hopes on, and I'm sure many of you did too. However, the announcement showed we were off to a bad start with the lack of features like NFC and a very small battery.
We've already reviewed the Watch Style once, but I've been using the device for a while and have some thoughts on it as well. Read More
I love watches and wear one all the time. So I was one of those who got really excited when the first smartwatches started hitting shelves, and I remain someone who likes them. I have owned a few Android Wear devices, a couple of Pebbles, and I've even tried out the Apple Watch and various iterations of Samsung's offerings over the years. What I have not tried, until now, is the so-called "hybrid smartwatch." Read More
Google and LG set out to build a pair of watches to launch Android Wear 2.0. What resulted were two wildly divergent products that make no attempt to hit the middle ground. Richard reviewed the Watch Style, which features a lithe frame but includes fewer features than almost any Wear-based smartwatch that came before it. I'm looking at the Watch Sport, an unapologetically huge device with a wide array of capabilities that allow it to be a serviceable stand-in when you leave your phone behind. LG held nothing back with this watch, but it's not right for everyone. Read More
The Watch Style is the lower-end of the two smartwatches LG has just released in conjunction with Google. It's not particularly handsome, it's not particularly feature-packed, and at $249, it's not particularly well-priced; however, it's still my favorite Android Wear smartwatch that I've used to date, and one that I think will strike well with the average consumer. Read More