Android made a big deal when it announced the Doze Mode in phones with Marshmallow 6.0. It was yet another attempt by Google to help optimise the battery life on Android phones. Basically, what Doze does is that it detects that the phone is lying idle for 30 minutes and then automatically shifts the processes to a low power mode, which basically saves the battery. The only applications that are not really affected by Doze are the ones that have been signed with Google Cloud Messaging feature, but it definitely does help improve the battery life.
Wearables as a market in India is yet to fully take off. You would not see too many people with a smartwatch adorned on their wrists. While most of the people are aware of the likes of Apple Watch or even the Motorola Moto 360, other than some real geeks, you will not really find too many people interested in wearing a smartwatch or kind of a smart wear. We have seen some of the fitness trackers being popular in the land and largely that is to do with their lower prices and nothing more. Xiaomi Mi band is a fine example.
The Motorola Moto 360 first generation was the runaway, or rather should we say the only hit product of Android Wearables post its launch last year. Since then, a fair few pretty Android Wear watches have come out, though the one that really interested everyone and had them glued was the second generation of Moto 360. The device, despite all its hype has not really picked the eyeballs the way the first generation of the watch did.
Apple has announced a new magnetic charging dock for the Apple Watch. The Apple Watch went on sale in the United States this year around February, though it was only in November that the much-hyped watch made its way to India. When the watch made it to the market, in the retail box you got the magnetic inductive charger that basically attached to the back of your watch to allow charging. This was not the most comfortable charger for those who wanted a full fledged dock like arrangement for their watch so that it could rest on the dock rather than being half on the table and provide added security.
Apple has heard them and have introduced a new Magnetic Charging Dock for the Apple Watch which allows you to dock the watch both, vertically as well as lying flat on its back. The dock does have an inductive charger inbuilt into it and is powered by a USB to lightning connector cable. One bummer is, that there is no power brick included in the package so you need to use the 5W power brick that comes with the watch itself in the package. The dock is available at Apple Stores in the United States for a price of $79. The good part is, that one dock is capable of charging both, the Apple Watch 38 mm as well as the 42 mm variant.
One of the leading watch manufacturing brands of the world, Fossil has gone on to acquire Misfit, a fairly well-known name in the world of wearables and fitness tracking. With this acquisition, Fossil will finally enter the much talked about category of wearable devices and fitness trackers where some of its competitors such as Tag Heuer have already set a foot, with an Android Wear device.
Misfit has been in the market for making rather budget wearables without any screen like the Shine 2. Their USP has been surprisingly accurate results alongside an epic battery life that lasts good over 6 months. They have in the past tied up with the likes of Speedo and Swarovski in the past, but lack of a big brand name has kind of outdone some of good work that Misfit has done and not gotten them the sort of recognition that they have deserved in order to compete with the likes of Nike and Fitbit which are big in this space.
Kosta Kartsotis, CEO of Fossil Group said:
With the acquisition of Misfit, Fossil Group will be uniquely positioned to lead the convergence of style and technology and to become the fashion gateway to the high-growth wearable technology and connected device markets.
The acquisition cost stands at $260 million and the integration of Misfit products into the Fossil line could begin as early as the beginning of next year itself.
Xiaomi played a typical disrupting the market card when it announced the Mi Band early last year. The inexpensive fitness tracker is able to track your steps, calories burnt as well as sleep tracking. All of this was available at a price of about Rs 1000, which is by far and away the lowest when it comes to any reliable fitness tracker around. Several other players like Yu tried to enter the market at the same price, but were never able to match up to the accuracy of Xiaomi.
However, with the inexpensive Mi Band, with no display, the challenge always was for its successor and what will Xiaomi do in order to take the game to the next level. We now have the answer in the form of the Mi Band 1S which is everything that the Mi Band is and more. The addition here is a heart rate sensor that has been built on the underside of the tracker capsule. The new tracker is slightly heavier, by about half a gram and slightly thicker by about .9 mm. This is why you would not be able to use your current bands with the Mi Band 1S.
The battery and the IP rating of the new Mi Band 1S are the same as the previous ones but we presume that the new feature of heart rate sensor will take a substantial juice out of the battery and shortening the 30-day life. The band is available for just a shade under $16, which would give it an Indian price of Rs 1056.
The Pebble was the first ever usable wearable device, well before the likes of Galaxy Gear, Android Wear and Apple Watch happened. With its e-ink display, the Pebble watches were famous for having battery life that would easily outlast the likes of Apple Watches, Android Wear devices and pretty much any other wearable device that you could think of now. However, with the original Pebble and then the Pebble Steel followed by the Pebble Time, one complain that has been persistent has been the complain with the looks of the watches. Pebble is fixing this with Pebble Time Round.
It is the first Pebble watch to sport a round dial but the bezels on the side really kill the look. Just like the Apple Watch, Pebble will be making the Time Steel in several color options including Black, Silver and Rosegold Pink. The straps too are available in several colors and combinations and will be available soon. The Pebble Time Round will continue to support both Android phones as well as iOS devices. Those who wish to book their watches can do so at Pebble’s site or the likes of Amazon in the US.
The downside of the watch is definitely a 2 day battery life, which was sacrificed to probably make the watch really thin. However, the Time Round will be able to completely charge in 15 minutes flat, giving you enough time. Not sure about licensing or who are the new partners on board, but you would expect all the existing apps that worked well with the last generation of Pebbles to continue their support.
Google has finally decided to pull the plug and bring in Android Wear to the iPhone. The mummers of the same happening have been going on for a while that Google has been planning to bring the software that enable the working of an Android Wear Watch with an iPhone for a while, but the news was made official late yesterday evening. The way to setup your iPhone to work with an Android Wear watch is very similar to the way you set up your Android device that is by simply going ahead installing the Android Wear app and then syncing the watch to the phone by turning on Bluetooth on the device.
It is worth noting that while it has been claimed that only three Android Wear watches work with the iPhone, several users have been able to get the watches like those not listed to work with the iPhone too without any issues. We ourselves were able to get our LG G Watch to work with the iPhone 6 Plus without any hassles. Our claims are verified by the Twitter user @Preshit who too, was able to work out the same. We have embedded his tweet showing the working LG G Watch with his iPhone above.
You must have an iPhone 5 and above and running iOS 8.2+ for the app to sync to Android Wear devices. As per the official release from Google here, currently on the LG G Watch Urbane works with the iPhones but with all the upcoming devices with Google’s Android Wear OS, there will be no compatibility issues.
Via: Google Blog
While the smartwatch revolution has well and truly begun, we are yet to come across a product that will set the standard for the industry. The Apple watch was supposed to do this, but with rather declining sales as the days go by, the Apple Watch has struggled to make the dent in the universe that it was expected to make. Android Wear still seems to lack the winning formula and the search for the one goes on. While the digital world is gradually taking over, one aspect that a lot of us seem to be neglecting is the wonderful world of touchscreen and OS and Wearables is strictly restricted if you have the perfect vision.
Dot is trying to change that.
Dot is a smartwatch that is specifically aimed at those who have less than perfect eyesight. It is aimed at visually impaired individuals as instead of a regular touchscreen with colors or e-paper display, the watch brings a braille display. The display basically consists of dull pins which raise and fall in order to communicate time, notifications, navigational directions and more just like any smartwatch would do.
The display also allows you to set up the refresh speed so that you can set how fast or slow are you able to follow braille and change the refresh rates accordingly. The watch can also double up as an E-Readers for the visually impaired and can be connected to your smartphone with Bluetooth 4.0 technology. the watch has a battery life of about 10 hours currently and will go on sale for less than $300. For any early adopters, you will be able to pick up the watch around the December period.
Android Wear, Google’s Wearable platform has undergone a fair few changes thanks to incremental updates in the past year or so since it was launched. Things have definitely been simplified and few new features have been added such as direct support for WiFi on the device. And that might not be all because the next major update of the Android Wear is set to hit the town in the next month or so.
Usually reliable, Phandroid have reported that a new update will be shipped out for Android Wear starting July 28th onwards which will see the platform get cross watch sharing. The feature will be called Together and is very similar to what we have seen on Apple Watch where users send each other heart beats. On Android Wear though, you will be able to send messages, stickers as well as emojis. The update will also bring interactive watch faces, whereby, tapping on the watch face will bring out a host of settings of the likes of watch faces or activities that are going on. It is not clear though whether this tap on sort of a gesture will be available for only select default watch faces or will the third party watch faces be able to use it too.
Guess either way, we shall find out very soon if the report turns out to be true!