Friday, October 18, 2013
Whilst Pebble have caused their own ripples in the race to stay afloat in the iWatch pond, the lesser watched, but not lesser watch Sony Android Watch 2 has been recently unveiled to quite a receptive audience.
With improvements based on the carefully monitored successes and failures of both Sony’s own first smartwatch as well as rivals from Pebble and Kickstarter, the Sony Smartwatch 2 offers itself as a fully functioning device operational with all models of Android phones; a significant improvement on its previous version which just functioned with Xperia models. At first glance, this Android-only focus seems a disadvantage against the Pebble and Kickstarter models which support iOS as well as Android, but there are so many limitations within the iOS platform that the Sony version currently offers wider usability.
Charge and connections
Sony claim that their Android Watch 2 offers “the longest battery time for a smartwatch”, a bold statement which has borne verification from Strategy Analytics (June 2013). Sony’s Smartwatch 2’s period of usability following a single charge holding varies from 5 -6 days for low usage to 3 – 4 days for “typical” use. Although this seems favorable, the truth is that this “longest battery time” is actually fairly comparable across all of the smartwatch options currently available. However, this in turn means that Sony’s Smartwatch is highly competitive in the battle of the battery, particularly when you consider that its charge supports a large color screen and different connectivity versions, which include both Bluetooth 3.0 and NFC. The other bonus is the fact that charging the Smartwatch 2 is via micro USB technology, rather than through cables, which adds to convenience and flexibility when it comes to charging on the move.
The Sony Smartwatch 2 is the only smartwatch on offer currently which has a color display. Its screen of 1.6 inch, 220 x 176 pixels is also slightly larger than its competitors. Whilst there is no dedicated nightlight LED, the color display does aid backlighting when used in darker environments. Sony claim that their smartwatch also fares well in brighter conditions, and that their color display is a sunlight-readable.
Just a splash of water-resistance
In hand with its competitors, Smartwatch 2 is “splashproof” but this is literally as wet as it can get: being caught in the rain or enduring hand washing are within the limits of the watch, but there’s no forgetting and wearing this one in the shower!
The App advantage
The Smartwatch 2 offers several app advantages, particularly those essential call-related functions: call-handling; call-log; call notifications; email notifications and a range of social media notification functions, including the vital Gmail, Twitter and Facebook. Organization and productivity apps are available, including calendar, weather and new events. As well as social media ‘entertainment’ links, there are also remote music functions. These options all come as standard with the watch, whilst additional apps are available and in development, including remote photo snapping and presentation control.
So, when all’s said and done, this second generation Sony Smartwatch 2 bears all the hallmarks of lessons learned from the first time around, whilst the command Sony have over developments in this exciting area of branded technology clearly hold no boundaries: it’s certainly one to watch!
- License: Creative Commons image source
This was a guest article from Aleksandra Seremina, contributor to Android software development know-how section at blog.azoft.com .