a bit monkish.
When I was a kid, I put everything I could find in my pockets just in case I needed them. Of course, when I needed something in my pocket, it took me a few minutes to sort through everything to find it. Some women’s purses are that way.
I’ve discovered that using the Apple Watch is like having too many things in your pocket. You know what’s there, but it’s overwhelming trying to find one particular item. Shortly after I wrote my review of the Apple Watch, I stopped wearing the device because it was like having an iPhone on my wrist, and I didn’t need an iPhone on my wrist when I had one in my hand.
Last week I was sent an LG Urbane watch to review. This is one of several new Android watches which just recently have been made compatible with an iPhone through a free, downloadable app from the App Store. I’ve used the watch for about a week now, and for me it’s a perfect compliment to my iPhone.
What you may have read about the marriage between an Android watch and an iPhone is true: The apps are limited to what are already installed on the watch. However, what I’ve discovered is that I don’t miss having 100+ watch apps. iPhone notifications pop up on my watch, as do phone calls and text messages. The Android software comes with weather, a health app, calendars, email, a flashlight, and other apps, including several watch faces.
Setup was a breeze. I downloaded the Android Wear app and it began syncing with my watch almost immediately. I was then able to toggle which notifications I wanted on the watch, choose a watch face, and I was ready to go.
The battery life on the LG Urbane is similar to that of the Apple Watch, as is the charging time. However, the watch face is on all the time, so I never have to shake my wrist to activate the screen.
I like the circular shape of the watch’s 1.3 inch OLED display, and the included leather band with contrasting stitching looks sharp and professional (you can attach any 22mm wrist strap to the watch). The pedometer and other health apps seem to work well enough, although I haven’t really tested all of their capabilities.
For what I need a smartwatch to do, the LG Urbane running Android Wear works great with my iPhone. And with an audible, “OK Google,” I can set calendar items, search the web, set an alarm or reminder, or find the closest Starbucks.
An Android watch with my iPhone is a great way for me to keep the clutter of my wrist and keep this busy pastor organized. For me, this seemingly awkward relationship is a winner.
(c) 2016 Michael C. Voigts
I'm a follower of Christ serving as an Associate Professor of Spiritual Formation at Asbury Theological Seminary.