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Thread: Why I'm Not Your Wearables Guy

  1. #1
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    Post Why I'm Not Your Wearables Guy

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    Here's the Moto 360 v2 that Howard reviewed a few weeks back. I got a chance to play with it too; here it is at its best in its inductive charging stand, the perfect travel clock.

    Wait, I was supposed to put it on my wrist...?

    In the year and a half that I've been testing smartwatches I've come to an important realization: I don't particularly care for them.

    Maybe it's not them, maybe it's me. I stopped wearing a watch fifteen years ago, the moment I got my first cell phone with network-connected time. So strapping something around my wrist is unfamiliar, antiquated even.

    Of course I did buy those two Pebbles. Coming from the original LG G Watch—which, to be honest, was an impulse purchase based on curiosity—Pebbles were an easy sell, as both the original model and subsequent Pebble Time were extremely light. There was a definite geeky appeal in the original monochrome Pebble, and though Android Wear has made great strides in usability I maintain that Pebble's Timeline makes the most sense of any smartwatch UI I've seen thus far.

    It's a shame that the watches scratch so easily and that Pebble harvests non-anonymous data from your phone.

    Android Wear hardware is, of course, more substantial, more cumbersome on my wrist and more of a strain on my wallet. The Huawei Watch, the prettiest one so far (in my opinion) retails in Canada for the price I'd expect to pay for a phone. And what do you get for that, really? More than a year after Android Wear's début it seems like its "killer app" is still notifications on your wrist.

    Someone on a podcast I heard somewhere had a damning and fairly accurate assessment of the entire smartwatch category: Smartwatches exist only to offload notifications onto your wrist because phones are getting too big to take out of your pocket.

    Nuts to that, I say. I'm not your wearables guy, buddy... I'm not your wearables buddy, guy... Nope, phones for seniors, that's clearly my niche.
    My mobile memoirs — free ebook available here.
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    Quote Originally Posted by acurrie View Post

    Nuts to that, I say. I'm not your wearables guy, buddy... I'm not your wearables buddy, guy... Nope, phones for seniors, that's clearly my niche.
    Dude!
    You made me laugh so hard!!!
    Love this post.

    Sent from my Wonderful LG Optimus L90

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    Hey, it's an untapped market... and maybe chance to start my own blog!

    bigbuttons.com
    makeitlouder.com
    callyourmother.com

    Open to any other suggestions.

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    Well, to some of us, that notification push is plenty good enough reason to get one of these contraptions. I average over 100+ notifications daily, enough to annoy me quite a bit to be honest. The ability to just dismiss/archive the majority of them(and yes, answer some of them through the Time's/LG's built in mic)makes my workload a lot easier. Do I need to buy the most expensive smartwatch for this? Nope. My LG G watch(around $80.00US these days) is more than enough, and does nearly everything the pricy Urbane(or the uber expensive Huawei)can do thanks the the great idea from Google to make the Android Wear experience uniform instead of fragmented.

    I like my Time as well and, thanks to the first adopters finding out that the thing scratches easily, bought a really nice military grade protector($10.00 on Amazon)and applied it first off as soon as I opened the box. A few months later, not even a smudge even after some pretty hard hits. I'm also finding out that a few of the apps, like Foursquare, are really useful, something I had a hard time with on my LG. The Time has an easier to use interface to boot. So all in all, I like the experience as it makes sense for ME. As with all electronics, assess what your real world needs are and go from there.

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    Luckily I do not suffer from FOMO, the Fear Of Missing Out.

    The last thing I need is being bombarded by more information that I never asked for. Its bad enough having to deal with SPAM via the mail and emails.

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    Quote Originally Posted by acurrie View Post
    Someone on a podcast I heard somewhere had a damning and fairly accurate assessment of the entire smartwatch category: Smartwatches exist only to offload notifications onto your wrist because phones are getting too big to take out of your pocket.
    That is exactly why I think smartwatches are going to explode over the next few years. Smartphones have gained so much functionality (phone,time piece, camera, computer, music player, tv, etc) the uses are starting to conflict. For some functions convenience is paramount, while other functions need screen size or processing power. So smartphones are a compromise. Incorporating a smartwatch can reduce that compromise.

    My smartwatch handles the tasks of time piece, phone, and music player. Its on my body 22 hrs/day, instantly available and completely unobtrusive. Tasks that require reading, writing, or video are delegated to my 8” tablet, which does these things better than a smartphone. It too is usually near me (ie. in my pocket, on my desk, in the car), but we may be separated for longer periods of time than I’d want to be without phone access (ie. going running, eating in a restaurant).

    By having devices that almost completely overlap* in function, I realized that the key isn’t duplicating smartphone functionality, rather, its the separation and specialization of functions that will make smartwatches indispensable. A better moniker would be phonewatch. AT&T realizes this, hence the introduction of NumberSync. Smartwatch manufacturers are starting to realize this. Once they make smatwatches compelling, people will buy. Its up to the early adopters to show the way.

    * My watch has Kit Kat OS and is capable of running Play Store apps, my tablet has telephony hardware and is capable of making phone calls. So, while capable of performing similar functions, the user experience is very different.

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    I'm on a $15 dumb watch from CVS after 2 years of smartphone failure.

    The Pebble? The default band way too small is fragile and cracks off easily, making it into a pocket watch. I tried to replace the band, but the non-standard band mounts had multiple brick and mortar jewelers scratching their head and turning me away.

    On top of that, the company hates left-handed people: the buttons are on the wrong side to discourage use, and they flat out refuse the simple software configuration that would make the watch reversible.

    Then there is the Samsung Galaxy 2 Geo Neo. Unlike the Pebble. the user interface is well designed. However, the charging nightmares: it charges by metal pads on the back that wear off. Then you can't use it at all after its last charge goes.

    Had a Moto 360, took it back. The 8 hour life was a major design fail. You know a smartwatch is no good when the Number one thing you do on it is check battery life.

    Apple Watch? Sounds nice, but it is designed to work on just one hardware platform. No thanks.

    Make a good watch, and I will get it

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