Smartwatches Stories May 24, 2016


Pebble has just unveiled its latest smartwatches, and has done so in the most Pebble-like way possible, by launching a new Kickstarter project. The smartwatch maker has returned to the platform it used so successfully with the original Pebble, and the following iterations, with a true second generation Pebble and a second generation Pebble Time along with an all-new 3G wearable called the Pebble Core.

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Smartwatches Stories May 18, 2016

Screen Shot 2016-05-18 at 2.26.49 PM Google has announced a new version of Android Wear at I/O this morning. In the biggest update to Android Wear so far, version 2.0 has been redesigned with a focus on more customisable watch faces, fitness and messaging.

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Smartwatches Stories February 18, 2016


According to a new report from Strategy Analytics, the sales of smartwatches in the fourth quarter of 2015 outpaced sales of Swiss watches for the first time. The company claims that during the holiday quarter, a total of 8.1 million smartwatches were shipped, while 7.9 million Swiss watches were shipped.

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Smartwatches Stories January 28, 2016

huawei watch

Huawei has just sent out invitations to media for an event taking place in Barcelona on February 21st, the day before MWC 2016 kicks off in earnest. Time hasn’t yet been specified, but the event will take place at the Montjuïc Exhibition Centre, a location the manufacturer has used in the past to announce new products.

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Smartwatches Stories January 14, 2016

PSA: Moto 360 Sport now available from the Google Store

When Motorola announced its new, second generation versions of the Moto 360 smartwatch, it also teased a more fitness-centric model called the Moto 360 Sport. While the regular 360 launched in time for holiday seasons shopping, the Sport didn’t land until significantly later. In fact, it only landed in the US — at Motorola and Verizon’s stores — last week.

For those who like to shop on Google’s own online store, you’ll be glad to know the Sport is now available to buy at and costs $299.

For those who’ve been looking for an Android Wear device optimized for exercising, the Moto 360 Sport looks to be a great option. It comes with a durable, thick silicone strap and with a screen that adapts to surrounding brightness. It’s IP67 water and dust resistant and has a built in heart-rate monitor.

Key Specs: 

  • 1.37-inch 360 x 325 resolution AnyLight Hybrid Display
  • 45mm diameter case
  • 300mAh battery
  • Wireless charging (dock included)
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 quad-core processor
  • 4GB storage
  • 512MB RAM
  • Bluetooth 4.0 LE
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g
  • Barometric Altimeter for measuring altitude
  • Heart rate monitor

Smartwatches Stories January 8, 2016


Fossil and Tag Heuer may have been the first traditional watch companies to launch an Android Wear device, but it was never going to be long before Casio joined the game. The popular watchmaker has dabbled in the connected watch market for a few years now, and has finally unveiled its first Android Wear watch. The WSD-F10 might just be the most durable and rugged smartwatch we’ve ever seen…

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Smartwatches Stories January 5, 2016

MediaTek announces new processor designed specifically for smartwatches

Taiwanese processor manufacturer, MediaTek has announced that it will soon begin producing a brand new compact processor built specifically for smartwatches. The company claims that it’s the first system-in-package chip to offer GPS, dual-mode Bluetooth LE and a MIPI-supported high resolution display all in one unit.

Although exact power and specifications aren’t mentioned, MediaTek claims that its chip is 41 percent smaller than solution from its competitors and can also enable much longer battery life. The press release states that devices with the MediaTek MT2523 chip can last more than a week on a single charge. If true, this could be a game-changer. Manufacturers will be able to make smaller, slimmer watches that last more than just the standard two days on a full charge.

“The MT2523, with its combination low power and rich features, marks a significant step forward for the smart watch and wristband industries, said  JC Hsu, MediaTek’s corporate vice president and general manager of IoT business unit. “Power combined with efficiency has always been the hallmark of MediaTek technology solutions and we are leading the charge in bringing this know-how to IoT products.”

MediaTek’s MT2523 product family is based around a highly integrated system in package (SiP) that contains a micro controller unit (MCU), dual-mode Bluetooth, GPS and a power management unit (PMU). The MCU enables wearable devices with lower power consumption and smaller form factors than Android Wear. The display component supports MIPI-DSI and serial interfaces, resulting in a high-resolution mobile screen. It includes 2D capabilities of true color, per pixel alpha channel and anti-aliasing fonts, plus 1-bit index color to save memory and computing power.MT2523’s low power comes from its ARM® Cortex®-M4 processor, which combines high-efficiency signal processing functionality with low power, low cost and ease-of-use benefits.

The new SiP will be available to manufacturers at some point during the first half of this year.

Smartwatches Stories January 3, 2016

Original Moto 360 in champagne metal now available for $150+ $5 shipping

Holiday season may have ended, but that doesn’t mean companies are ready to stop discounting products. We’re heading in to 2016, and have just seen an influx of new products hit the market in the last few months. That means older versions of gadgets are now available cheaper.

One such device is the original Moto 360. Head on over to Woot and you can snag the champagne gold version of Motorola’s first Android Wear watch for just $149 with either the 18mm or 23mm strap. That’s down 35% from the original list price of $229.

As a reminder, here’s a rundown of the specs:

  • 1.56-inch, round 320 x 290 LCD display (205ppi)
  • 18mm or 23mm brand
  • 320mAh battery
  • Bluetooth 4.0 LE
  • Heart rate sensor built in
  • TI OMAP 3 processor
  • IP67 water resistance
  • Pedometer
  • Corning Gorilla Glass 3
  • Qi-standard wireless charging (cradle include)
  • Runs Android Wear, compatible with Android smartphones from 4.3 upwards

The Moto 360 was arguably the first attractive, fashion-forward smartwatch running Android Wear. The champagne metal version emphasized that focus on design further. By the time the second generation was released towards the end of last year, Motorola had competition from the likes of Huawei, LG and Apple. Coming in to 2016, competition is only going to get fiercer as traditional watch-makers get involved in the wearable tech market. Both Fossil and TAG Heuer have launched Android Wear watches, and we expect other well-known fashion brands will do the same this year.

Smartwatches Stories December 1, 2015


Back when it introduced the new Moto 360 range, Motorola also showed off a brand new sports-focused version of its popular Android Wear smartwatch. Unlike the regular Moto 360 though, it wasn’t available right after launch. In a blog post today, the company has finally given us an official price and release date for the fitness wearable…

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Smartwatches Stories November 25, 2015

Deal: Samsung’s Android Wear-powered Gear Live is now just $79

When Android Wear was initially unveiled as a smartwatch platform, only a couple of manufacturers were ready with hardware right at the outset. LG had the plastic square G Watch, and Samsung had the Android-based version of its pre-existing Galaxy Gear. Of those two, the Gear Live was certainly the more appealing.

As new companies jump onboard and new watches are released, that usually means tasty discounts for the old gadgets. In this case, it’s a very healthy discount. Samsung’s Gear Live is available now from a trusted seller on eBay for just $79.

If you’re an Android user who isn’t certain on the benefits of having a wearable connected device (or a smartwatch), snagging an older generation for little outlay is a fairly safe way of testing the water. Sure, you won’t get the sharpest screen, the fastest processor or the classiest design, but you will get a very basic taster for what Android Wear is like to use every day. It’ll certainly save you from spending $250 or more on something like the Moto 360, Huawei Watch or recently released Fossil Q Founder.

It might even make a decent stocking-stuffer to go alongside some of our other favorite ideas for holiday gifts. Of course, be sure to keep an eye out on 9to5Toys’ Black Friday Deals page for up to date news on all the best deals over the next week.

Smartwatches Stories November 9, 2015


After months of teasing us, TAG Heuer — in partnership with Intel — finally announced its Android Wear powered smartwatch in New York. It marks the first time any luxury watch maker has officially unveiled an Android Wear watch, and comes with TAG Heuer’s world-renowned build quality. Despite being a smartwatch, TAG also wanted to make sure the device was a great watch and so ensured that it displayed time very accurately. It claims the watch is accurate to 1/100th of a second. expand full story

Smartwatches Stories September 17, 2015


Samsung’s recently announced Gear S2 has stirred a lot of attention for itself over the past few weeks. The sleek, round design, attractive user interface, rotating bezel and non-discriminatory Android support all sets it up nicely to be one of this year’s most desired wearables. Samsung is yet to announce when the device will hit retail stores in the States, but if a leaked internal training video is anything to go by, it looks as though the company is prepping for an October 2 release…

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Smartwatches Stories September 4, 2015


Runtastic, the maker of popular fitness apps that was acquired by Adidas earlier this year, is today announcing the launch of its latest companion hardware with the new Runtastic Moment fitness tracking smart watch. expand full story

Smartwatches Stories August 20, 2015

Interactive watch faces aren’t the only goodie coming in Android Wear version 1.3, apparently. Google Translate is finally getting its own smartwatch app.

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Smartwatches Stories July 7, 2015


You know what I haven’t once thought since purchasing my ASUS ZenWatch? “Man, I wish this thing had a software keyboard!” Nope, not even once. But someone clearly has, as the developers behind the 5-TILES keyboard for Android smartphones have brought their signature tile-based keyboard to Android Wear users in the form of a messaging app, called Wear 5-TILES.

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Smartwatches Stories March 2, 2015


As was expected (thanks to an advertisement spotted in the Barcelona Airport), Huawei came out this year at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain to announce its first entry into the Android Wear race: the Huawei Watch.

A first impression of the device might quickly lead you to believe that this is one of the most—if not the most—attractive Android Wear devices to launch, and based on what Huawei’s shown us, this thing might just be worthy of such a judgment…

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Smartwatches Stories February 5, 2015

Swatch CEO Hayek

Late Swatch co-founder Nicolas Hayek

While Swatch certainly won’t be partnering with Apple on the iPhone maker’s upcoming Watch despite an ill-fated rumor that surfaced last year, the watchmaker does plan to go toe-to-toe with Apple promising its own version of a smartwatch due out soon. Bloomberg reports that Swatch plans to bring its answer to the Apple Watch to market in the next 90 days, and unlike the Apple Watch, it will work with Android phones.

The device will communicate via the Internet “without having to be charged,” Chief Executive Officer Nick Hayek said in an interview. The Swatch smartwatch will also let consumers make mobile payments and work with Windows and Android software, he said.

It’s unclear if Swatch intends for its own smartwatch to also be compatible with iPhones like the Apple Watch or if the company is only targeting competing platforms, but Swatch CEO Nick Hayek’s claim that its Internet-connected watch won’t need to be charged will be interesting if the company does indeed deliver with functionality that competes with an Apple Watch or even Android Wear smartwatch. expand full story

Smartwatches Stories January 7, 2015

BlackBerry says Android Wear support for BBM coming in early 2015

BlackBerry, today at CES 2015, has announced that its BBM service is coming to Android Wear in early 2015. BlackBerry hopes that its Android Wear client will bring nearly the full capabilities of the messaging service to smartwatches. With BBM, users will be able to receive push notifications for new messages, read full messages, respond to messages with Google Now, and accept BBM invites.

Smartwatches Stories July 30, 2014


A lot of Android Wear enthusiasts are holding out for the Moto 360 strictly because of its casual appearance. So far most smartwatches have square faces that make them look more like a gadget and less like a fashion statement. While that may work for some people, others are looking for a timepiece that compliments their wardrobe, hence the Moto 360’s popularity. However, some recently awarded patents suggests that Motorola’s forthcoming smartwatch may eventually receive some round competition from Samsung.

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Smartwatches Stories January 8, 2014


Samsung’s entry into the world of wearable tech may not have been terribly successful, with dreadful reviews and reportedly poor sales, but the company seems undeterred, promising more wearables this year, reports re/code.

“2014 is actually going to be a really big year,” said Dennis Miloseski, head of studio for Samsung Design America. “We are planning some products around the launch of our flagship devices.”

Samsung’s US design team does appear aware that the company needs to work a lot harder on the aesthetics as well as the functionality …  expand full story

Smartwatches Stories October 1, 2013


The Samsung Galaxy Gear smartwatch reviews are out, and that red glow you see on the horizon is from the blushing faces at Samsung, visible all the way from Korea. The reviews are not, to put it kindly, overwhelming in their enthusiasm for the device.

The Verge

A smartwatch the Galaxy Gear is not. Frankly, I’m not sure exactly what it’s supposed to be. Samsung describes it as a companion device, and the Gear is indeed chronically dependent on an umbilical link to another Samsung device, but it never left me feeling like it was a helpful companion. The notifications are Orwellian, the media controls are exiguous, and the app selection has no substance to underpin the hype. Samsung’s attempt to turn the Gear into a style icon is also unlikely to succeed, owing to the company’s indecision about its target demographic. Trying to please all tastes has resulted in a predictably charmless and soulless product.

The Gear’s camera and phone calls are both surprising and delightful, but they’re unfortunately isolated highlights. When all is said and done, I expect the Galaxy Gear will be looked back upon as a rough first draft that helped the Korean chaebol steer a better course en route to the goal of producing a real smartwatch. As it stands today, though — unintuitive, oversized, overpriced, and in constant need of a Galaxy guardian — the Galaxy Gear might have been better off staying on the drawing board …  expand full story

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