Motorola Moto 360 review
Motorola’s second Android watch features improved battery life, but its price means it's definitely best suited to the fashion market.
Motorola was relatively early out the gate with an Android Wear smartwatch back when smartwatches really were a nascent category. That first model took some time to officially launch in Australia, and this seems to be a trend with Motorola, as the 2nd Gen Moto 360 smartwatch has only just launched here, nearly a year after it’s been available in other markets. For a smartwatch, this is not exactly what you could call "timely". Was it worth the wait?
|Motorola||Moto 360 Gen 2 Smartwatch|
|Screen size||1.56in LCD|
|Band options||Silver or Cognac Leather Band|
|Battery||300mAh, 2 days|
|Heart rate sensor||Yes|
Upsides: Why you’d want the Moto 360 2nd Gen
- Quality design: We’re well past the stage where the concept of a smartwatch alone is enough to sell it. The 1st gen Moto 360 was a good looking watch, and the same is true with the 2nd generation model. In Australia, Motorola will sell it in two variants; a silver metal 42mm band option, or with a 46mm cognac leather band. Both look like quality items, which makes this part of the fashion wearable pack, rather than just being another smartwatch.
- Good battery life: Motorola rates the 300mAh battery in the Moto 360 2nd Gen as being good for up to two day’s battery life. That’s a claim that many manufacturers make for smartwatches, but it’s one that Motorola can live up to, with an easy two day’s charge as long as your usage isn’t extreme.
- Inductive charging: Not a unique feature, given that Samsung’s Gear S2 and the Apple Watch also use inductive charging, but it’s nice to have a solid stand to place the Moto 360 Gen 2 onto at night and know it’ll be charged in the morning.
- Integrated fitness apps: Motorola’s pitch with the Moto 360 Gen 2 revolves around its fitness app, Moto Body. Moto Body takes regular physical measurements to provide an ongoing analysis of your fitness trends. Again, this isn’t a unique feature we’ve never seen before, but it’s well implemented in a smartwatch that doesn’t exactly look like it’s specifically designed for fitness tracking.
Downsides: Why you might not want the Moto 360 2nd Gen
- Uncomfortable for intensive fitness purposes: Motorola provided us with the Silver Metal band version of the Moto 360 2nd Gen to test. Heavy running and metal bands aren’t the best of friends, so while Moto Body could track us well while we ran, the band itself was less comfortable than the "sport" band options available with other devices. Thankfully the Moto 360 2nd Gen will take standard bands, but that's an additional cost and possible style mismatch in the making.
- Still has a flat tyre: The first gen Moto 360 was notable for being one of the first "watch" looking smartwatches, but the downside to its round face was a solid black "flat tyre" section of the watch face. Nothing has changed in this respect with the Moto 360 2nd Gen, although it’s more noticeable on some watch faces than others.
- Android wear is the same all over: The Moto 360 2nd Gen’s pricing puts it in the fashion wearables category, but the reality of Android Wear being so tightly controlled by Google is that if you want the features of Android Wear, they’re almost universal across all Android Wear devices – including those that are available at half the asking price of the Moto 360 2nd Gen.
Who is it best suited for? What are my other options?
There’s definitely a market, albeit maybe not as big a market as the early hype might have suggested for fashion smartwatches, and the Moto 360 2nd Gen definitely slips into that category nicely.
At $479, however, it’s in the upper echelon of Android Wear devices alongside offerings such as the Huawei Watch Elegant or Samsung’s Gear S2. It’s still a tad cheaper than most Apple Watch models, but then those devices won’t work on Android smartphones anyway.
Where can I get it?
Motorola offers the Moto 360 2nd Gen through Harvey Norman or via its Australian web store for $479 in either Silver Metal 42mm or Cognac Leather 46mm styles. At the time of writing, Expansys and DWI are both stocking the 2nd gen Moto 360 range at a better price offered by Motorola. Here's what's on offer.