Motorola has fired its first salvo in the increasingly competitive and hot wearables market. With Apple having just released details about its upcoming watch, Motorola is going to have it’s work cut out. Lets dive in and see what the Moto 360 is all about.
The Moto 360 is a gorgeous smart watch design with a huge amount of thought put into the tactile feel but not so much into up to date electronics. Motorola had prototyped the case of the watch in a square/rectangular shape so there was more space for the screen. These squarish cases wore a bit awkward on the body so Motorola opted for an edge to edge circular screen with sensors at the bottom for maximum visuals. Screen dimensions are 1.56” 320 x 290 205ppi backlit LCD and is made out of Corning’s tough Gorilla Glass 3. The display sits on a machined 11.5 mm thick stainless steel case that houses all of the go fast bits and is firmly secured to your wrist via Horween leather straps.
Encased in all of that glass and steel is the (old) Texas Instruments OMAP 3 processor with 4GB of internal storage and 512 RAM. Motorola seems to have spent all of their resources on the gorgeous aesthetics of the 360 because they skimped in the processor department with the obsolete TI OMAP 3. The Moto 360 has voice capabilities and features dual microphones embedded within the case. A feature that will help the 360 compete with the new Apple is an optical heart rate monitor for the fitness oriented wearer. The watch as a whole has an IP67 rating which allows it to be both totally protected against dust and protected against water immersion between 15cm and 1 meter. Connectivity is facilitated by Bluetooth 4.0 low energy which allows the 300mAH battery to provide all day fun with mixed use and when the fun does come to an end it comes with a charging dock.
Looking at the Moto 360 package as a whole, it’s a solid first effort in what has become a very crowded market. The one hiccup in Motorola’s execution of the 360 was opting for the OMAP 3 instead of something like a Snapdragon 400, which is what most of their competitors are using. The Moto 360 is priced a bit high at $250 to really compete with the likes of what Apple and Samsung have on offer. The silver lining for early adopters is that a Pebble Steel is the same price and it lacks the Gorilla Glass LCD, faster processor, optical heart rate monitor and voice capabilities.