Call me a gadget-addict or technology-enthusiast but I love to be in the know about the latest in technology – be it trends, new products, apps, services, etc. Needless to say I am also a great fan of smartwatches. The concept of a “real” smartwatch was introduced in the market by Sony about two years ago although not many knew about it and its features. Later on, other companies picked up this concept and many other similar products with even more features started pouring in the market.
Of course, being a fan, I had to try the interesting ones myself. And now that I have tried a few I thought of sharing it with the Digital Qatar readers. But before I share my comparison let’s look at what really differentiates a smartwatch from the regular wrist-watch.
What can you do with a smartwatch?
The main difference between a smart-watch and a regular wrist-watch is that you can connect a smartwatch to your smartphone, allowing you to do much more other than just time keeping. With a smartwatch you can:
- customize the interface of your watch – digital, analog, custom-themed, etc. customization in a regular watch is limited to merely changing the cover, strap or perhaps dial cover.
- instantly get notifications for certain apps installed on your other digital devices. These include notifications for e-mails, text messages, chatting apps, social media, and of course phone calls.
- get reminders for meetings and to do tasks
- use it as an alarm clock
- use your smartwatch as a mini iPod or MP3 player allowing you to play music
- download fitness apps that calculate calories burned, distance walked, etc.
- use touch-screen technology which is user-friendly and more efficient way to use a watch.
The above form the basic features of a smartwatch, but from my personal experience, and after comparing different models, I found out some practical and useful ways smartwatches make our day-to-day life easier. Here are some of my observations:
- Easy access – the simplicity of just leaving your mobile device in your pocket and controlling everything from the watch.
- Application integration – combining all your social media apps into your watch makes life much more easier especially if you are into social network the way I am.
- App stores – some of the smartwatches have their own app store with a lot of helpful and useful apps beyond email, social media. Some navigational apps really work wonderfully.
- Digital e-Ink – although not all of the watches I tried offer this feature but some have digital e-Ink technology embedded in them. This technology makes the smartwatch interface behave like a regular paper instead of a digital display. It has been proven to be harmless to the eyes so staring and playing around with the watch for longer periods.
The Amazing Four
Subjectively, I picked four different brands for my comparison although there are many more models out there in the market. I call them the “Amazing Four” and I personally think they are the best watches in the market so far. Here are my Amazing Four smartwatches:
- Sony Smartwatch
- i’m Watch by I’m Smart
- Pebble The Kickstarted Community Watch
- MetaWatch by Meta
I used each one equally and tried to figure out what each can do and here is the summary of this small “competition”:
It’s not difficult to see which one was the winner in my little personal “competition” above. But just to put it in words my favorite watch so far is the Pebble. And the main reason, besides all the above features and comparisons, is that it truly looks cool!