Sony SmartWatch 2 Review
Actually, as all such products so far, it is not overly smart, just a wrist wearable that you can use as a small second screen accessory, paired with the Android phone in your pocket. It is designed to alert you on calls, emails and messages, and allows you to quickly and discreetly check on them, or control your music player from the watch, for instance. Is this an enticing enough proposition to spend $200 on against formidable competitors like the Galaxy Gear or the oldie but goodie Pebble? Read on to find out...
Sony's understated design language is present on the SmartWatch 2, which is a thin, squarish, aluminum piece in black and chrome, or, alternatively, with a stainless steel silver face. The circular power key seems to serve double purpose – on one hand, it reminds of the wristwatches of yesteryear you had to wind, and on the other it bears the trademark OmniBalance design that's found with Xperia phones. If you get the “Active” version of the timekeeper, there will be a pair of silicon straps in the box, which you can have in many different hues, like yellow, pink, turquoise, purple, and black. Alternatively, you can have it with leather bands in black and beige - for you, suit types.
Sony SmartWatch 2 is not the lightest of them all, yet at 122.5 grams with the silicon straps, it still goes almost unnoticeable on the hand, though the feeling would be better with the leather straps. There are no tactile keys besides the power button, as navigation is done with capacitive back, home and menu keys. These are responsive, but you'll have to be careful which one you are pressing if you suffer from a case of fat digit-itis. There is a microUSB port with a protective flap on the left for charging the device as well.
The watch is IP57 certified for water resistance, so it is not scared of the rain or water splashes on its shiny surface. This is neat, because it allows you to keep your precious phone safely in the pocket while checking on a text message in moist conditions.
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We don't know what's with Sony and skimping on screens lately, but the 1.6” 220x176 pixels LCD touchscreen on the SmartWatch 2 seems rather dull and low-res. Text looks jagged and colors seem washed out, but it's ОК for quick glances, as that's the most you can do with a watch screen anyway.
The screen is bright enough for decent outdoor visibility, but tilt your wrist even slightly, and brightness plus contrast start to diminish rapidly indicating poor viewing angles. On the bright side, snooping on your messages in the subway becomes harder.
1. ArtSim98 (Posts: 414; Member since: 21 Dec 2012)
Weeelll.... At least it got a better score than the galaxy Gear.
4. DaHarder (Posts: 129; Member since: 10 Oct 2009)
As someone who has owned used all 3 versions of SONY's 'smartwatch' and now owns the Samsung Galaxy Gear (along with a couple of others)...
My SONY Smartwatch 2 has no where near the speed, polish, display quality or overall functionality/smoothness of operation of my Galaxy Gear and the fact that it's designed to be tightly integrated with Samsung Devices only ensures that it doesn't suffer from desperately attempting to be 'digitally friendly' with multitudes of (often under-powered) Android devices... That simply lack the ability to function well with the Galaxy Gear... and you can bet that if Apple ever makes a 'smartwatch', It Too will be limited to only Apple/iOS devices for the same reasons.
As for those complaining about the price, US 200.00 for the SONY bought me but an easily scratched aluminum casing with a low-res display that's rather unpleasant to view under most situations, whereas the (US 299.00) Galaxy Gear features a case made of highly durable Stainless Steel with an actual Sapphire Crystal covering the display... and let's not forget that the Galaxy Gear also has a surprisingly capable camera and a rather excellent speaker phone and very useful voice control included as well.
Comparatively: The SONY is clearly a Ford Fiesta to the Galaxy Gear's BMW 535i.
8. AwesomestMaximuss (Posts: 78; Member since: 09 Jul 2013)
Yeah,,i mean look at the pros and cons they concluded for both the devices...and u ll know that GEAR gets a lower rating so as not to upset Michael h lol
11. buccob (Posts: 731; Member since: 19 Jun 2012)
I would categorize both of them as "different" devices...
The Sony SmartWatch 2 is an Accessory for your smartphone (almost any android) and it serve that purpose very well... while replacing also a regular watch in a more practical way...
The Galaxy Gear is more of a standalone device that happens to have additional functionality when pair to a new Galaxy Smartphone...
I would rather get the Sony SW 2 because: its waterproof (I tend to forget taking my watches off when showering), also because the battery lasts significantly more, so it is less of a headache...
I couldn't care less for having a high res on a watch, having a camera... for that I already bought a SmartPHONE...
16. buccob (Posts: 731; Member since: 19 Jun 2012)
And regarding your analogy of cars.... following my line of thought (taking them as different devices)...
I would say that the Samsung Gear is an airplane and the Sony is a nice SUV...
The airplane is awesome and can take you to many places... but in reality there are only a limited landing areas, and it is a chore to take it daily to everywhere...
On the other hand, the SUV can also take you to many places, maybe slowly, but in day to day is more practical...
You may want a plane... but most of the time you are going to travel by car
20. greyhulk (Posts: 73; Member since: 30 Jun 2010)
Unfortunately, the Sony does the whole "watch" thing better, since it displays the time all the time without having to hit a button or jerk your wrist like you're having a spasm (which doesn't always work).
To me, the Sony is the better watch, which is what I'm looking for. It also doesn't need to be charged nearly as often and doesn't have an awkward special charging unit. Oh, and I'd rather not be stuck with only Samsung devices just so my watch works, thanks.
2. WHoyton1 (Posts: 1476; Member since: 21 Feb 2013)
I'm sorry i would chose the gear over this!
6. rd_nest (Posts: 435; Member since: 06 Jun 2010)
Sony Smartwatch is a joke. Pathetic screen, horrible interface - who ffs uses a phone UI on a watch?
Over that you have on-screen buttons..LOL
Someone must be drunk when the designed it.
Apple/Samsung will eat this for breakfast. Exactly the reason why Gear will sell much more than all generations of Sony's combined.
7. Rexperia (Posts: 93; Member since: 28 Sep 2012)
Ohh woww, are you mad? Or drunk? What a pathetic fanboy... shame on you
10. emadshiny (Posts: 763; Member since: 05 Dec 2012)
At least it can endure more than 3 days.
You don't need to charge your watch twice a day.
And also it won't die when you're washing your hand. LOL
17. DONUT (Posts: 137; Member since: 27 Jun 2013)
i think u should get ur eyes checked, it doesnt have on screen buttons
9. mr.popo2525 (Posts: 5; Member since: 26 Sep 2013)
Not a very good $200 device, but neither is Galaxy Gear a good $300 device. To spendy for a glorified notification center.
13. Windsponge (Posts: 89; Member since: 01 Nov 2009)
I love my gear. A good quality watch could easily cost 350 or more. Gear is a great device. I don't regret the price, worth it to me.
12. anleoflippy (Posts: 171; Member since: 03 Jan 2013)
I find this better than the Galaxy Gear. But then again, I don't use Smart watches.
14. cheetah2k (Posts: 696; Member since: 16 Jan 2011)
Well, I'm no iFan, but for sure Apple will be watching this space, as well as the feedback on both Galaxy Gear and Smartwatch2 and designing something that is actually useful.. Its a shame, but this is exactly what happens when products are rushed.
Sometimes its not optimum to be the first with a product like this, although IMO, Sony should know better after 2 previous attempts - the SW2 should have been a cracker and it's clearly not.. Doh!
19. PhillipCabral (Posts: 10; Member since: 02 Nov 2013)
It looks just like my iPod Nano 6 with the iWatch case -.-