Here’s why I bought the Moto 360, finally
A little less than a month ago I wrote an article titled “Why I haven’t bought the Moto 360 – yet” in which I detailed why I hadn’t made the jump from my LG G Watch to the smartwatch from Motorola. I concluded that the round face was just too small a jump to justify replacing the G Watch with the Moto 360, especially given its shortcomings in battery life and performance.
That was weeks ago. Then, just last week, Pocketnow Reader Christer Nilsen was watching my Kyocera Hydro Life unboxing video and noticed something interesting – yes, there I was with a silver Motorola Moto 360 on my wrist.
Some people are crying foul, others say that it’s about time. Regardless of which camp you’re in, here’s why I took the leap and bought the Moto 360.
They aren’t free
A common misconception is that, since we work for Pocketnow, we get all the stuff we use for free. We don’t.
Sure, we get review samples just like the other sites, but those are time-limited, and we’ve got to return them in “like new” condition. In this case, I was able to unbox the smartwatch and wore it for a day and a half before I had to send it off for our full review.
Shortly after I sent the watch off to Michael Fisher, I had the opportunity to purchase my very own Moto 360. I passed, and I wrote up why. Shortly thereafter it went out of stock. Neither Google Play nor Best Buy had any more. I couldn’t get one if I wanted.
I stopped by my local Best Buy more than once, just in case it happened to get a shipment in. On one occasion I found a couple looking at the smartwatch display and watching a review video on their smartphone. I overheard whispers of “I think that’s him!“, but I just smiled and said hello.
Best Buy was still out of stock, so I couldn’t make an arguably “planned” impulse buy that day.
Since then, a software update or two has been released released, one of which had users reporting greatly improved battery life. I had just come from a Pebble with 5-7 days of use between charges, then to an LG G Watch which required charging every night. For a watch to not make it through a single day of use was the clincher for me. However, after the updates and reports of people getting a full day of use (13-18 hours), I started to come around.
I’ve always felt that Android Wear was a rushed product, probably to get a family of wearables on the market before the Apple Watch arrived. Google and its partners succeeded in doing so. However, I still think that Android Wear wasn’t originally supposed to be released with Kit Kat. Android L makes a lot of improvements when it comes to battery life, and I suspect Android L was the operating system that Google originally intended to run on watches powered by Android Wear.
That was it
With October quickly approaching, and expectations of Android L’s release (as well as some fancy new smartphone and tablet hardware), I decided that it was finally time for me to get my own Moto 360.
Motorola had discontinued the Silver and Gray version of the watch, and I really liked the silver face, so I began looking for the “Stone” version of the watch. Motorola finally made it available through its website and I made the leap.
A week or so later I had the watch in-hand, and began to hate the “stone” gray watch band. Ultimately I purchased a Pebble Steel band from my local Best Buy and it looks right at home on my Moto 360.
Battery life has been acceptable. All but twice I’ve made it through the entire day from morning until bed time without fear of running out of juice. Those two times I dropped the watch on my Nexus 4 Qi charger, or my ZENS Qi-enabled portable battery to top it off before heading to meetings expected to run late into the night.
— Joe Levi (@joelevi) October 8, 2014
Yes, I’d still consider the Moto 360 a “small jump” over the LG G Watch, and only in style. The G Watch still outperforms the Moto 360 in battery life, responsiveness, and even in screen resolution (but you’ll never notice the difference). The Moto 360 is about form over function, and you’ll pay the price not only in availability, but in usability as well. To some, myself included, the improvements in form outweigh the fairly minor compromises in function.
Hopefully I’m right about what Android L is going to do for all devices powered by Android Wear (not just the Moto 360), but we’ll just have to wait and see.
Itching for more Moto 360 coverage? Check out our announcement post, our specs chart, Adam Doud’s written first impressions, Joe Levi’s unboxing video, our list of three of its neat features nobody is talking about, and our impressions after 24 hours with the watch. Also be sure to give Episode 113 of the Pocketnow Weekly podcast a listen, in which we feature the Moto 360 in our Gadgets In Hand section.