The Motorola 360 promises so much that it’s hard to not want to dive into its specs headfirst. But once you do, it becomes obvious pretty quickly that, even before its release, it was already fighting a losing battle.
At first glance, the Moto 360 looks awesome. An elegant stainless steel housing and (in this market) a unique round face makes the watch stand right out from the crowd. It really does look stylish, it doesn’t have that “smartwatch” feel where it looks like you have a miniaturized mobile on your wrist.
As more and more Android smartwatches emerge, what is becoming apparant is that we are in very early days of the technology. The hardwear looks sweet, but under the hood, thats where the problems start.
Users in the US are frequently reporting the software to be buggy and the UI feels awkward. Android wear still has a lot of work to do to make the wearable experience more seamless. From some of the demonstrations we say, some apps would “bug up” and it seemed like the circular screen wasnt always fully utilised.
Hopefully as this technology evolves, the user experience is improved and we are left with a phone which performs without frustration. Sure, many apps worked fine. We liked the way that Google Maps worked, that was really handy. Google fit was useful, and incorporates the watch’s “fitness features” such as the pedometer & heart rate functionality.
The Moto 360 utilises google’s operating system and of course Android wear runs on this as its an Android watch. Notifications get pushed to the phone via a banner.
But the big problem here is the battery life. With an appalling 12 hours of battery life, the Moto 360’s stock goes way down in our book. Its annoying and tedious to have to keep charging something that often. How many devices do we want to charge twice per day? No, the battery life for us would be the reason that we wouldn’t buy the Moto 360.
We think its an awesome looking product, and it really is. Most of the Android phones that come out are going to be 6 of 1 half a dozen of another, and its only going to be the odd thing which will seperate them. Much like most Android phones, there is usually a feature that you are drawn to.
We’re certainly drawn to the aesthetics of this smartwatch, but selling at between $350-$400AUD, this one is not cheap and massively lacks in a couple of areas. From what we saw, UI needs work and battery life sucks.
Motorola will learn from this and hopefully next release has a vastly different battery life and a lot of work on the software. If that happens, it will be a corker of a product.
But for now, we’d rather have a mobile phone and a microsoft band.