Could this sleek and stylish smartwatch be the best Android wearable to date?
There’s no denying that smartwatches seem to be here to stay, as the products continue to gain huge support from consumers and manufacturers alike.
Motorola’s original Moto 360 was one of the most warmly-received smartwatches upon its release, as its sleek Android interface and familiarly round design won plaudits from all size. Now it has a successor, in a sporty new build, so how does it stack up?
Motorola (now of course owned by Lenovo) announced its second generation of wearables back in September, unveiling a whole range of devices looking to target different consumer sectors.
Today we’ll be looking at the Moto 360 Sport, a fitness-focused device that features improved health-tracking abilities alongside a lightweight yet tough body.
This is built out of silicone, meaning it’s gently on the skin and doesn’t rub, even in the rain, as it features a special UV coating that moves moisture away from the device. However it isn’t fully waterproof, coming with IP67 dust and water resistant rating, meaning it shouldn’t be used for activities such as swimming or diving, which is a shame.
The 1.37in screen is bright and colourful, and thanks to a new AnyLight hybrid display, you can always see the screen clearly, even in direct sunlight. Inside, there’s a Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 quad-core processor clocked at 1.2Ghz, 512MB of RAM and 4GB of storage, so it’s also pretty powerful too.
Setting up the phone is incredibly quick and simple using the accompanying Android Wear app, which allows you to sync the Moto 360 Sport to your smartphone. This means that health data will be automatically transferred, you can download new updates, apps and watch faces, and even choose which notifications can be delivered to the watch, meaning you don’t always have to be getting your phone out of your pocket.
Overall, it’s an initial plus for both ease of use and comfort.
As noted, the Moto 360 Sport is primarily a fitness device, but that doesn’t mean you cannot use it for other day-to-day tasks.
Able to sync with any Android phone running Android 4.3 or above, as well as a number of iOS devices running iOS 8.2 or above, the set-up is smooth and lets you start receiving notifications straight away. Overall integration with Android Wear is much smoother than previous generations, with updates being quickly delivered to your device.
Messages, calendar alerts and other notifications such as travel information can all be set up, although you’ll need to switch to your smartphone or tablet to respond fully, as with phone calls.
All of Android’s typical apps are here, including Maps (which we actually used the most, and was incredibly helpful) Play Music, Find My Phone, and Google Now. The latter includes voice search capability via a built-in microphone, with results displayed on your smartphone, giving you the spy experience you’ve always dreamed of.
In terms of fitness performance, the Moto 360 Sport performs pretty well, allowing you to set up pre-ordained fitness goals of steps taken or calories burnt with the Moto Body app, before providing you with updates on your progress throughout the day. It’s also comfortable enough to wear in the gym or on a run, and never feels like it is chafing or rubbing.
Battery life is extremely strong, the best I’ve seen on any Android smartwatch to date, comfortably lasting a full day’s usage without problem. Recharging the 300mAh battery is also fast and simple using the included charging dock, taking less than half an hour to fully recharge from zero.
Again, this is an easy-to-use device that works just as well in the gym as it does at the office.
Having used the Moto 360 Sport for a number of weeks, it’s proved itself to be an invaluable accessory to my daily mobile use. As someone who admittedly checks his phone more than is probably healthy, I always appreciate having a smartwatch that can collect all my key notifications in one easy-to-view location.
The Moto 360 Sport even looks great – and the range of watch faces available on Android Wear, along with a wide choice of wristband types and colours should mean you’ll love it too.
In short, this is easily the best Android smartwatch around on the market right now, blending surprising comfort, ease of use and great overall functionality into one handy package that you don’t want to miss out on.
The Moto 360 Sport is available from Motorola’s UK site starting at £219.
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