Last week at IFA 2014, Motorola announced a refresh of its product line with the revealing of the new Moto X and Moto 360 smartwatch.
In what may have been the most highly-anticipated Android Wear smartwatch to date, the Moto 360 comes equipped with a bold round face, heart rate monitor, both black and gray metal finishes. The wearable boasts a 1.5-inch 320×290 display with a backlit LCD touchscreen, powered by an Atmel MXT112S capacitive controller as a recent iFixit teardown revealed (in blue above). The body comes in at a diameter of 46mm and height of 11.5mm, while the leather band model weighs 49g – essentially, the same weight as your everyday wristwatch. Enhancing its durability, the attractive display is protected by a Gorilla Glass 3 covering.
Like all Android Wear devices, the Moto 360 features a wake-on-wrist-flick and automatic voice response via the “Ok Google” trigger, which allows a wearer to send texts, set reminders and such. It is compatible with any Android phone or tablet running Android 4.3 or higher, and has IP67 water resistance with submersion of up to 1 meter for 30 minutes. What this means: Shower, good. Swimming bad.
The Moto 360’s 320mAh battery should get you about a day of mixed usage. Additionally, the smartwatch comes with a pretty standard 4GB of internal storage and 512MB of RAM, in addition to the vibration motor included for notifications. Like other smartwatches, the Motorola accessory can be connected to your mobile device using Bluetooth 4.0 Low Energy.
Not just beauty but it has brains as well! Unlike some of its competition, the Moto 360’s round dial not only tracks and displays a wearer’s heart rate, but with its embedded monitor and pedometer, can analyze activity intensity.
In terms of pricing, the Moto 360 will go for $249 in the U.S. and £199 in the UK with a wider European rollout expected in October. Within three hours of making the Moto 360 smartwatch available on sale in the U.S., Google Play Store and Motorola’s website listed it as sold out.
Motorola has several competitors in the market, including the similarly-shaped LG G Watch R, the Samsung Gear S, the Sony SmartWatch 3 and the newly-unveiled Asus Zenwatch. With that said, the Atmel powered Moto 360 looks to differentiate itself with its wristwatch-like appearance — comprised of stainless steel and comes with a Horween leather band.
Motorola has now also taken aim at the affordable smartphone market with the new rendition of its Moto X flagship Android smartphone. The Moto X sports a 5.2-inch 1080p full HD display, 13-megapixel camera and a new dual LED flash that the company says provides more balanced light. Under its 1080p AMOLED display protected by Corning Gorilla Glass, there lies a 2.5Ghz Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 quad-core processor and 2GB of RAM.
“It’s high quality screen: it’s sharper, brighter, bigger, and just nicer to look at than the previous model. It has tremendous viewing angles, punchy colors, and can be seen in bright sunlight without issue. It’s everything the display on a flagship smartphone in 2014 should be,” Verge‘s Dan Seifert reviews.
The new Moto X measures 140.8 x 72.4mm (5.54 x 2.85 inches) with its tapered back ranging from 3.8 to 9.9mm (0.15-0.38 inches). To make room for the bigger screen, the phone itself needed to grow just a bit. The second generation Moto X retains the curved back from the original, but with a slightly slimmer width; as a result, the sloped design allows for the device to rest comfortably in a user’s hand. Despite its increased size, the Moto X may actually feel smaller than it should because of its new, metal frame that replaced the plastic on its predecessor.
“The new Moto X is shorter than the HTC One M8 and the Galaxy S5, while still having a larger display than either of them. It’s big, but not nearly as big as I normally expect a 5.2-inch smartphone to be. Part of that is because Motorola has maximized the screen’s footprint and shrunk the bezel surrounding it even further than before. Even so, it’s still managed to find room for a camera, light sensors, a new speaker, and new infrared sensors on the front of the phone,” Verge reveals.
Not only can you still launch the Moto X camera with a flick of the wrist, that’s not all. The new 13Mp camera starts to cache photos before you press the shutter so that it can capture the best looking photo, filtering out blurry shots or pics of people blinking. If you like taking selfies, this feature will surely be music to your ears!
As with the original Moto X, the look of the new device is customizable through Motorola’s Moto Maker online design studio — adding new colors and materials like eco-friendly woods and new leather finishes.
You can now create your own launch phrase as well, ranging from a simple “Hello, Moto X” to something that better suits your personality like “What’s up, Moto X?” Motorola has included a number of new Moto X features such as voice, gestures and more, thereby helping deliver a distinct Moto X user experience. These include Moto Voice, Moto Assist (changes the phone’s options based on your current activity), Moto Display (shows notifications on the display even when the display is off) and Moto Actions (three IR sensors on the front of the device enable a user to wake the device with a simple wave of the hand).
Here is a breakdown of the Moto X’s specs that enable many of its key features:
- 5.2-inch 1080P Display
- 2.5Ghz Snapdragon 801 processor
- 2GB of RAM
- 16GB and 32GB storage options
- 2,300mAh battery
- 13MP rear facing camera w/ 4k video
- Dual LED ring Flash
- Android 4.4 KitKat
“The new Moto X looks and feels like the premium smartphone it should,” Verge concludes.
Those looking to purchase the new flagship device can do so for only $99.99 on-contract, or $499.99 (£419.99) if you decide to get an unlocked one. Currently, it appears that the U.S. carriers will likely be AT&T and Verizon. As for availability, the Moto X will be out later this month in countries across North America, Latin America, Europe and Asia.
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