LG's G Watch R's fun - for everyday use, fascinating SmartWatch with only minor weaknesses

LG's G Watch R's fun - for everyday use, fascinating SmartWatch with only minor weaknesses

LG G Watch R SmartWatch - Black (Accessories)

Customer Review

After a week of using the LG G Watch R I draw a first balance.

Previously, I had not really interested in Smart Watches, because I do not pledged all existing watches: For technical and angular design (exception: Moto 360, but also do not really like me), too short battery life (I can live with it, a clock every day load overnight, but if you already screaming relatively early in the day after the charger and no reserves has, for me that is a no-go). When G R Watch the design but I liked right away, and even the manufacturer information and historical data from other terms of battery life (up to 2 days) could hope. Therefore, I, as the clock was to get as flash quote for cheap 184.90 Euro, simply supplied arrived times.

Repent I did not until today.

Design is always a matter of taste, but I find it quite successful in the G R Watch. I like this cool matte black, and especially the round, sporty look. So must a clock look IMHO.
The bracelet is certainly not the highest quality, but you can live with it only once and it betimes indeed be replaced by another (instructions for making your own can be found on the web to satisfy, or you just go to the next watchmaker).
Two days of battery life I do not reach, but even for a long day (18 hr. Or longer), it suffices easily. Depending on the usage I have after 18 hrs. Still 20-40% capacity. Here, the display in the Ambient mode always shows me at the time, and in daylight I use the highest or second highest brightness level.
*** Update on 05/04/2015: In the meantime I have also repeatedly been two full days (ie,> 36 hrs.) Managed on a single charge. In particular, if one leaves the screen brightness with an eco Watchface on one of the two lower levels, it is possible. So LG promises not too much. ***

Commissioning is easily even for laymen. The accompanying Quick Start Guide, you can forget about me, it has even more confused. The easiest way is as follows:
- Load "Wear Android" app from the Google Play Store on your mobile phone and switch on Bluetooth.
- The clock on charging cradle pack (good by the way: the clock snaps magnetically quasi in position a). You will start automatically. Follow the instructions on the display.
- When the clock for pairing with the phone calls, launch Android Wear on the phone and follow the instructions.

Done. Now let the whole thing rest than an hour at best. If necessary, is automatically an Android Wear update (currently 5.0.2) at the clock loaded (the clock prompt you to restart on). Likewise, install gradually the wear amounts of compatible apps that you already have on your mobile phone (except the Watch Faces of "WeatherPro" were only after a new installation of the app visible on the clock).

But where is now actually the added value of such SmartWatch over a normal clock? Really "need" you do not do something like that, yes. But if you ever put such an "ascetic" perspective based, one would now dispense with much of what's fun. And just as you have probably seen: The G Watch R is a gadget that you certainly do not need to survive, which is fun but. Let's talk about the pros and cons:

(++) Watch Faces.
Primarily a SmartWatch is only once a clock, and a clock should be functional and beautiful. Where is fixed in conventional watches on a design, there are for Smart Watches now a huge selection of dial designs (see also recommendations in this regard below), the partially deceptive look "real" and which one as the mood takes to match clothes and opportunity can change at any time. This adds variety and really fun. Whoever finds himself anything suitable in this selection, can build his personal Watch Faces.
The supplied Watch Faces are in principle already very usable and see some very nice. Unfortunately, they change me personally too fast again in the Ambient mode, and set this time is not (in the Watch Face apps from the Play Store, su that goes but consistently). Similarly, the brightness in Bright mode and in Ambient mode is the same. Parts of the dial are just hidden, but even then, even brightness level 1 is often still too bright. The Watch-apps from the Play Store offer as many more opportunities by providing separate brightness settings for both modes, or permit, a black- to lay transparent layer on the Watch Face to further darken it for example in Ambient mode.

(+) Sensors.
Pedometer, heart rate monitor, compass and altimeter are integrated in the clock and also work very well.
My external pedometer I can do without in the meantime, the works in the clock as accurate (at least for me; for example, my wife is with pedometers but generally at loggerheads which include all only a fraction of its steps). With "Google Fit" you can install the appropriate app to and have fun with corresponding statistics (if the activity detection is enabled; on this one, walk the steps during which overflowed not in the statistics). With Fit can also measure the pulse, with "Cardiograph" even permanently (if you want it). For the compass "Marine Compass" is recommended. Only for the altimeter I currently miss a display app (though the amount is included in the Watch Face "walking" displayed).
The heart rate monitor itself measures just useful, but tends at movements of the arm to gross inaccuracies. Maybe it is better to "reversed" carries the clock (on the underside of the wrist); I read somewhere, but have not tried.

(+) Battery life.
At least 24 hrs. Running time are quite comfortably in it, which is so far the top compared with other Smart Watches.

(+) Display: Sharp display with great colors, as you would expect of an OLED display. In normal mode, the maximum ranges. Brightness even in sunlight, in Ambient mode but not always (just when this darkens an alternative Watchface app).
For complex Watch Faces with very fine "chiseled" elements you realize then but that the display resolution still has potential for (this is true not only for the G Watch R, but for all Smart Watches are currently available). What is still really great on the phone (with FullHD resolution) (because in high resolution) looks, but shows on the clock when you look closely then the limitations of screen resolution. But I want to operate a "pixel Peeperei" and therefore leave "a blind eye to".

(+) Speech recognition.
Works very well, but it is also delivered her at the mercy, as there are no other entries (eg email, SMS, WhatsApp).

(+) Performance.
CPU performance, RAM and storage of the clock seem entirely adequate. Even with several additional apps installed (see below) I have not had any stuttering or "hanger", and available from a total of 2.9 GB of memory are occupied just 0.5 GB with me. By far the largest app are the "Google Play services" with currently 145 MB (tendency certainly growing), the second largest app "Watchmaker Premium" followed by a wide margin (20 MB). The Watch Faces are in the range of 3-5 per MB, are so moderate memory uncritically.

(+ -) Stability.
A "crash" of the clock, I had never. The Bluetooth connection to the mobile phone is mostly very stable, only sometimes (after leaving the range times) like the clock is unable to reconnect. But then helps to restart the clock (which is done in less than 1 minute).
Just this morning I had admittedly sometimes a stubborn case: The Android app Wear showed virtually nothing in me; although allegedly connected with the clock, she could not communicate with her obviously. It helped only a deletion of Android Wear-app data and cache in the Application Manager, then all was again present. In addition, the recharge display for mobile phones and the weather in A45-Watchface (see below) was not displayed (in other Watch Faces, however, it worked). Here helped a Clearing the cache of A45-app Application Manager (on the phone) and then restart the app. So not too bad and not directly imputable to the clock, but the app, but you should know a little bit with the Android "standard tools" to help in order to solve such little problems can.

(+ -) Power consumption mobile.
The continuous connection of the clock with the cell phone (even if it is "Low Power" -Bluetooth 4.0 is) the power consumption of mobile phones is increasing according to my previous experience to 20-30% at. The problem is not even the CPU time, but the additional Wakelocks the SmartWatch apps that reduce the proportion of low-power "deep sleep" phases by about 20-30%.
With my Galaxy Note 3 I came so far with 55-60% "Deep Sleep" part getting loose during the day, now it is at about 40-45% "Deep Sleep" portion before just so that I even possible daily short as 15-20 percentage points "Night anke".
*** Update on 01/04/2015: In the meantime, my cell phone battery consumption is halfway back to normal. Although I reach still only 40-45% Deep Sleep share, I come with an unchanged behavior on a single charge again through the day and have no "refueling" often even after a 18-hour day with 1- 2 hrs. Cell phone use (ie display on) still> 20% residual capacity. That's actually not a big difference to pre-SmartWatch times. It seems to be well but have been something else, which has given me in the first days of the increased power consumption. ***

(-) No brightness sensor.
Depending on lighting conditions, unfortunately has to be readjusted (in 6 steps) manually.

(-) Battery life.
Although listed above as positive, but the negative aspect of course is that you even have to remember to charge the clock every 1-2 days. A maturity of one week or more would be nice, but currently remains a dream.
Not to be forgotten is also the fact that batteries age. At 300-350 charge cycles per year should the battery after 3, probably to be completed no later than 5 years. Whether he then (even? Itself) can be exchanged, currently beyond my knowledge. Like anything in our "brave new world" the industry now trims including the field of wrist watches in the short innovation cycles and life.

Here are my personal recommendations for Watch Faces (all cost a little thing, but it's worth):
- My favorites are the Watch Faces of "SmartWatch Bureaux (DDR NET)". Especially for lovers of sophisticated digital layouts recommended. Extensive configuration options (including the length of time until the clock from Bright Mode in the Ambient mode changes, and the brightness can be set separately for both modes). Unfortunately, the weather provider can not be selected, and, unfortunately, the information is the fixed predetermined provider very inaccurate (temperature consistently about 5 ° C set too low).
Always included in the Watch Faces are battery level indicators for clock and cell phone, which I find very convenient. In addition, other useful information depending on Watchface more or less displayed: Current weather, weather forecast, moon phase, sunrise and sunset times, pedometer (which is not synchronized with the Google Fit pedometer, but apparently counts the Watchface App itself, which, however, has the advantage that the sensitivity can be set).
Just install the app overview "Watch Face Shop for AndroidWear" and can decide the personal taste. My favorites are A44 (analog), A45, A47, A48 and V03 (digital).
- "Watch Faces for Android Wear" from "Intellicom AS": thousands of ready-made, some very high-quality and sophisticated Watch Faces are from the Gallery can be loaded directly and usable. Extensive configuration options. Unfortunately, here too inaccurate weather information provider and can not be selected.
Whoever finds nothing suitable, builds further ado his own dial.
- It is recommended again and again "Watchmaker Premium Watch Face" from "androidslide", but I find it rather disappointing. Even in the paid version only 8 finished Watch Faces selected (for every week 8 new; the old 8 disappear, but if they have been previously stored locally, they are permanently available). One can indeed create own dials, but that can also Intellicoms App. In addition, it does not work as reliable as the other apps (for me, the display currently does not show when I invite Watchmaker Watch Face at the clock; I have not yet took care of, what could be there). But exemplary are the configuration options, even when weather you have the choice between different providers (including Yahoo), so the weather information is realistic.
*** Update 1: In FaceRepo there are plenty of free Watch Faces that you import, edit and save in Watchmaker can. See Comments, thanks to Socom for the tip! Interestingly, offered for download in Watchmaker Premium finished 8 dials come obviously from FaceRepo ... ***
*** Update 2: In the meantime, my Watchmaker dials walk again. It helped, as often happens, a clear the cache of the Watchmaker App and then restart the app. The problem was triggered by the way, a certain dial ("bumblebee"), which is apparently not compatible for some reason with the G Watch R. I could reproduce the effect, namely, as I have tried to display this dial again; same effect, black screen, no other Watchmaker dial more loaded. Clear cache and "Stop forcing", everything was back in order. The "defective" Dial I then deleted from "My Watches". :-) Respect, I have to revise "reliable operation" Watchmaker my statement about the. ***
*** Update on 01/04/2015: Watchmaker's still got to become my favorite Watchface app, if only due to the fact that it is the - can import Watch Faces of FaceRepo - partly really fantastic. So thumbs up for Watchmaker in conjunction with FaceRepo! Try it! ***

Here times in random order some more recommendable, partially already mentioned above Apps (apart from Watch Faces), to which I am already met in the short time:
- "Wear Mini Launcher": install unconditional to launch apps on the clock easily. Incomprehensible why Android Wear such a launcher does not bring the same.
- "Store For Android Wear": Survey app that filters out precisely the (still clear, but growing subset of) Android Wear apps or apps with Wear support from the Google Play Store.
- "Marine Compass" Very nice compass that can be carried out both on the phone and on the clock.
- "Cardio Graph": to measure heart rate for longer periods.
- "Google Fit": Super as a pedometer app. Enable motion detection in the settings!
- "Endomondo": In sports, the clock can be used as a heart rate monitor.
- "Google Maps": Shows when navigating while on a map, but after all the driving instructions on the clock. Very handy on the bike and saves the battery (the phone screen can remain out).
- "Familonet" notifications when a family member reaches a defined location or leaves, also on the clock to see.
- "Onefootball": watch the game of the favorite team on the clock.
- "Poweramp Remote": Genial! Remote control of the power amp app on the phone (one of the best Music Player apps for Android), so that it can remain the most time in your pocket while listening to music.
- "Calculator": As the name says ... Had not thought that the arithmetic works so well on such a small display.
- "TrackID": Fast determination of title and artist of a song, which you always hear on the radio or wherever.
- "Ultimate To-Do List": Ingenious task scheduler, I have long been used and also a Wear add-on has, with which you can check off tasks on the clock and can capture tasks quickly by voice (with the required for the acquisition add-on is not for non-English versions of the app is currently translated and also the voice input is not yet prepared for non-English languages, but that will probably not stop there).

- A SmartWatch is today certainly not imperative, but expands and simplifies the use of mobile phones today, and we stand with Android Wear actually still pretty much at the beginning. We'll see what the future brings so. An increasing number of app-maker will consider how the SmartWatch can support their apps useful, and integrate appropriate Wear components.
- Although at one point or another a little hooked (although not always the clock is imputable in itself but often Android Wear), is the G Watch R overall a successful and suitable for everyday use representative of her profession, the one without restriction can recommend.

Overall, I forgive solid 4 stars for the clock. The fifth star is available for a successor where the concept and design is maintained and the small disadvantages attributable to the hardware (such as permanently installed battery, lack of brightness sensor) are addressed.

Thank you have persevered this far. I hope my review is helpful to you. If so, I am pleased with a click on the Yes button.

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