Moto 360: Review

Control and style come in one package with the Moto 360. The current wave of smartwatches really answers society’s need to be seamlessly connected to our phones, and the new version of the Moto 360 makes this connection a pleasure to experience.

It’s important to understand that this is an Android time piece and then some. If you’re hoping to use it with an iPhone, you definitely can, but unfortunately then the Moto 360’s function will be limited to notifications and you’ll have little to no control over launching apps and interacting with your phone. If you’re an Android user, however, this watch can make life far more convenient.

My biggest objection to wearing a smartwatch has been the look and feel of most models out there. They just look like – well, bulky smartwatches.  Motorola, however, has created a time piece that looks much like a regular fashion watch and offers connectivity to your Android device with full control over apps. The Motorola 360 has a built-in heart rate monitor and offers a “Fit” app and the “Moto Body” app. These will track your steps throughout the day, monitoring your heart rate and also your active calories burned. The details and averages are presented in your mobile app. The heart rate monitor doesn’t have a continuous operation and therefore is not ideal for use during activities or in the gym, but for these, Motorola has a new sport version of the watch coming complete with built-in GPS. You can then use the continuous heart rate monitor in conjunction with your favorite fitness app for better and more accurate tracking of your workouts.

The Moto 360 comes in two sizes, the 42mm face and a 46mm face. Both come in different finishes and several options for bands, including leather, silicone and metal. I love the integration of the quick release lever on the back that allows for easy swapping of these. This function lets you easily complement your fashion of the day with the appropriate band. Then you can go a step further and select a watch face that suits your activity, mood and style for the moment – awesome.

When the 360 is paired with your phone, you also have the option to connect to your local wifi. This allows you to have access to your notifications and some functions without being in range of your phone. I found this most convenient in the office or at home, where I tend to leave my phone in one place when I move from room to room. No more missed calls or slow responses to emails and texts. The only drawback is the absence of a built-in speaker. Although you can reject the call and even send a predetermined text as to why, if you decide to answer the call, you have to dash back to where your phone is in order to actually talk to the caller.

Google Now provides access to relevant information from weather to navigation, making your work day so much easier. My favorite feature is the double vibration to notify you of an upcoming turn in your navigation directions.

I found access to most apps fairly easy. However, I did find that notifications were intermittent at times with some of the apps I used. Even though I consider myself a moderate to heavy user, the battery on the watch never failed me. And since I don’t sleep with the watch on, it’s nice to have a wireless charging cradle sitting on your bedside table that holds the watch in such a way that you can easily read the time display at a glance.

The verdict is pretty simple on this one: I love it! I have always enjoyed wearing different watches and definitely own a handful to choose from, but I must admit that lately the Moto 360 has been getting my full attention.

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