This is WT VOX review of the Moto 360 2 after two weeks of usage.
As with the overall smartwatch market at the moment, there is a growing “fashion tech” trend, with manufacturers putting the accent on the fashion side of their devices.
After the success they had in 2014 with their first smartwatch, Motorola decided to have another go at Android Wear and the result, the new Moto 360 2 – also called the Moto 360 2015 – is quite a release.
Moto 360 2 – Design And Specs
With the new Moto 360 2, the buyer can pick from three watch cases and bezel colours (silver, gold or black). Also thanks to the easy strap system, you can add any watch band colours or material options.
In comparison to the previous Moto 360 (1st generation) that had one watch size, Moto 360 2 brings a model for men – 46 mm – and one for both, men and women sized at 42mm.
For the first time we see also a “Sport” version, so yes, there are lots of options available. For this review, we had the 42mm – man version – on our hands.
With the new model, Moto 360 2, Motorola design team decided to keep the circular watch face. This is good, given the “smartwatches must look like real watches” trend but, just like the first version in 2014, Moto 360 2 kept the “flat tyre” design.
The flat tyre is a design choice that makes a round smartwatch… not round. Strange no? Let me explain.
The display is a sort of full circle until you get to the bottom of it. At that point, the screen becomes a flat bar, giving the appearance of a flat tyre.
Despite all the media hype, I have a lot of positive feedback regarding the flat tyre. It is quite useful to have that hard flat edge at times. It is a design we are familiar with. We have it on smartphones, laptops, tablets and it makes reading easier and more natural.
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It is true, it cuts from the dial area and if you’re using digital hands it will make some circular watch faces look weird. I, for example, choose the digital face to avoid the distortions and the so-called aesthetics problems.
Motorola did answer to people’s complaints, explaining that the little black strip houses the ambient light sensor for the LCD display. The results are good. Thinner bezels and more screen.
Last year’s Moto 360 didn’t feel like a real smartwatch but more like a tech device, with various sensors inside its circular case and a difficult strap to remove. On the other hand, the new Moto 360 2, gives a real feeling of a smartwatch and looks like a real watch.
The Moto 360 2 has strap lugs now and the difference is not only visible but palpable too. The new Moto feels much better on the wrist. Also, the “lugs” trick gives Motorola more room inside the casing to pack in more sensors.
Look at the pics and see the new lugs designed with a “catch-and-release” system, that lets the user use third party watch straps, from Motorola or anywhere else.
Another great change relates to the only hardware button on the Moto 360 2. The button on the right side is now moved from the 3 o’clock to the 2 o’clock. This is great, no more digs into your wrist at the gym or throughout the day.
Moto 360 2 Review – Performance And Features
Moving to the performance and features, the new Moto 360 2 has remained on Android Wear, Google’s platform for smartwatches. This is one thing that hasn’t changed and we love.
Android Wear has become better since its launch in June 2014. Android Wear is now a mature OS and genuinely useful. We live in a busy world. A world of constant notifications where having the option to reply, dismiss or even ignore a call with a flick of a wrist, makes a major difference.
Interacting with Google Now cards is faster than before. This is thanks to the watch faces that can have shortcuts to OS functions. Ex: widgets that can display weather, step count, battery, date, etc.
Tapping on one of those widgets will get you information such as last calls, missed alarms or an agenda of your appointments. Or, tap and quickly glance at weather news for next day or how many steps you’ve done so far.
Thanks to the much improved “Hangouts”, messages have canned replies and emoji. Sending messages is now a pleasure.
But, the most important thing that Android Wear brought, thanks to its maturity, is the app store. The watch section on Google Play Store is now packed with various apps, from fitness to reminders and from calendars to chat apps.
Best part, it’s still growing by hundreds of new apps each day, thanks to third-party developers that now have access to extra functionalities.
The fitness-tracking features in the Moto 360 2 are new too. Now is able to read your heart rate, count your steps and estimate your caloric consumption for the day. This works great with Motorola’s smartphone companion app by helping you chart your daily progress without having to non-stop check on the small screen, on your smartwatch.
Another massive bonus here is the latest Android Wear software update. This new update allows the users connect their Moto 360 2 with iPhones too, instead of just Android smartphones.
And it is not only the latest Moto 2015 that works with iPhones. Also, the original Moto 360 can now work with an iPhone once updated to the latest Android Wear software with an Android smartphone first.
Moto 360 2 Review – Battery Life And Price
Looking back at Moto 360 2014, one of the major issues we had, was the poor battery life. We are happy to see that the new model has a better battery. More juice, from 320mAh to 400mAh.
It might sound little but if you remember the first mobile phones like Nokia 1100 or 1209, they all had 400mAh batteries and able to run for days.
The combination of increased battery and new, power-efficient processor, gives you two good days without the need to recharge. This matches Motorola’s advert of 1.5 days without the ambient display on and a full day of usage with the ambient display on. The battery lifetime is really good this time, massive bonus here.
Price wise, Moto 360 2 starts at $299.99. The most expensive one is edging to $400 with a couple of extras from the Moto Maker store. Still, considering that Apple Watch is only starting at $349, Moto 360 2 is priced well.
Moto 360 2 Review – Accessories
Even if it was just launched, there are a few accessories and 3rd party straps available for the new Moto 360. For example, Tylt is selling a sportive strap for just $29.99 available in 2 colours, black and blue. We’ve tried it on and it feels great at the gym.
Moto 360 2 Review – Conclusion And Verdict
Overall, the quality of the new Moto 360 (2015 model) and the improvements they’ve made are making this smartwatch stand out. I just wish the price was slightly cheaper. Why? Well, the first model was priced the same – I still have it by the way. For that, if it was not for WT VOX I wouldn’t have bought the new model, just because of the hardware changes.
I have now on my old Moto 360 the same software and it gets me there. Yes, it is true, the strap is annoying and the battery is poor. Yes, I charge it every night and the button digs in my hand at the gym, but I can live with that. But, if you don’t have the old Moto 360 then, trust me, this is the time. The Moto 360 2 is a must.
One thing I know, once the price comes down a bit, I’ll also “upgrade” mine. If WT VOX doesn’t let me keep this one and you know what?… I’ve been told I have the nicest smile of all.
Moto 360 2 Review – Gallery
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