Hands On With The Moto 360, The First Round-Faced Android Wear Smartwatch

Motorola’s Moto 360 was ironically probably the most-coveted smartwatch at Google I/O this year, because despite high interest it’s also the only one that wasn’t available. It’ll still be shipped out to all conference attendees when it becomes publicly available later this summer, but for now we managed to snag some hands on time and a video walkthrough with Motorola themselves.

The smartwatch features the first shipping use of Android Wear’s round watchface design, complete with custom faces created by Motorola. The faces, and other interface elements, take up the entirety of the round screen, meaning that according to Motorola, there’s no wasted space despite the fact that it’s not a square display.

Other than that, it works like the other two Android Wear smartwatches from Samsung and LG, with notifications pushed from your smartphone and contextually relevant information surfaced by Google Now, plus a built-in mic for voice control.

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Design-wise, the Moto 360 might first surprise because of its size – it seems bigger than either of the other two smartwatches because of its circular design, but it also actually looks more at home on thinner wrists than the others, too. The stainless steel case sets this watch apart in terms of the high degree of quality it conveys, and as a watch enthusiast it’s definitely my favorite looking Android Wear device. It also ships with a leather band as part of the stock kit for an additional premium feel.

Motorola says it always planned to ship the watch on its own timeframe of late August, and they weren’t about to rush the project just to make the deadline for the conference, so everything is still proceeding according to their original plans. Aside from it running a bit warm, it definitely felt pretty much ready to ship, so hopefully we won’t have to wait too long.