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Thursday Poll: Interested in a Smartwatch?

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About 365 days ago, we asked our lovely community if they were interested in getting a smartwatch. Out of roughly 6,500 answers, 37% of folks were flat out against having a wearable device, 36% were still on the fence, and 27% were definitely interested in getting one. Since 12 months has passed, it’s time we test the waters and see if anything has changed.

Since that time, the Galaxy Gear has hit the market, there has been an explosion in popularity for the Pebble, and a few other competitors also hit the shelves. Companies like Apple, Samsung, and even HTC are reported to be releasing new wearables this year, so whether you want them or not, they are coming.

Let us know your take on smartwatches down below.

Interested in a smartwatch?

View Results

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  • Nikos Koufos

    No but if its from Google yes.

  • Hoffman

    One of the best purchases last year was getting my Pebble. It has become indispensible. The apps created by devs are the best and are what keep Pebble on top of others in the marketplace. The best.

  • antwonw

    You really should have the option, “Yes, I already have one.”

  • Ryan5609

    Only if it has features that smart phones do not have, so your list is going to be very small. I could see a smart watch being handy for something like heart rate monitoring and fitness. It could also be useful for walking navigation. But these are all things you can do with a smartphone and/or a peripheral device. Switching music tracks with out getting your phone out I guess? Other than the sheer convenience factor, which is nullified by having another device to charge everyday or two, I don’t see the point just yet.

  • NexusMan

    I absolutely am interested. I suspect many who are not interested don’t usually wear watches. I do. So as someone who wears watches and loves tech, there is no reason for me NOT to be interested in a stylish watch that combines tech for an added feature set and functionality. I was planning on waiting until Google produced its 1st smartwatch, however, the Pebble Steel is the 1st smartwatch that I actually want to buy, and most likely will. If Google produces one, that is physically appealing, I probably will get that too.

    • Nikuliai

      question is… what is the added feature set and functionality? that is where the watches are “not selling well” to me

  • Ricky Ortiz

    I’m more impressed with what I’ve seen from Pebble than anything Samsung has put out

  • kevinh52

    Only interested in a Google “Produced” smartwatch.

  • Jeffrey Brey

    PEBBLE STEEL! That is all! That’s of couse if I could afford one right now! lol.

  • Jordan

    We’ve been talking a lot about smartwatches in class today. We just don’t find them useful in their current state, but I believe they’ll eventually catch on. The PC wasn’t a hit its first try.

    • NexusMan

      It’s a very personal thing. Sure there are people to whom a smartwatch would not be useful, but there are others to whom it is. Someone in meetings all day, or in a work situation where they can’t constantly interact with their phone, for example, would find it more useful, than a teenager hanging out at home.

      • Jordan

        Agreed. Personally, I don’t wear watches. I prefer to view my cell phone for the time. However, I could see a big change to this in the future.

  • http://www.youtube.com/matthewmspace matthewmspace

    I already own a Pebble. It’s a great device. I can see notifications on my phone without taking out my phone. While I wish it had a speaker and microphone so you could respond to texts, it’s great for the price I got it at.

  • Nikuliai

    This may sound stupid, but I really want to like a smartwatch (I’m a tech guy… sue me), but right now they aren’t making anything coherent (short battery life, no REAL extra use, destroys your cellphone’s battery… right now I look on a better way the bands), this may change in 2014, but I really doubt it unless they make a really useful feature that makes up for the battery drain (even a month is crap compared to a normal watch)

    • NexusMan

      The Pebble Steel has great battery life, and does not destroy your phone’s battery, provided you have a phone that utilizes the bluetooth 4.0 profile, like the Moto X.

      • Nikuliai

        The Pebble Steel (and only Steel) have the better approach on the smartwatch ‘war’, but ti’s still lacking a good enough feature for me to buy it… I didn’t actually see (yet) a feature that makes me buy it, right now I’m not really that clear on what that feature may be… the “watch” part works kind of ok (better than the competition but still, you gotta charge it every 5-7 days), the alarms are nice but still lack being more modifiable, the waterproof feature is a MUST where the pebble crushes the smartwatch competition, but you can get all of that in a $40 watch, the only point you don’t get is the integration with your phone wichi -as of right now- seems still lacking a real purpose (to me), I may be wrong, but I feel like 2015 will be the year of the smartwatches, since to me 2014 will be the “oh crap we failed again this year with the smartphonewatch approach” and then they most likely will try to add a particular set of WATCH features, I mean the camera on the Gear is a nice add but it’s still just a piece of garbage if you don’t have a Note 3 (which I won’t buy since I’m as happy as someone can be with my Moto X)

        PS: u sure the Pebble uses BT 4.0?

        • NexusMan

          Yes, Pebble Steel uses Bluetooth 4.0. I think what it all boils down to is “would I pay $150 -$250 (or more) for a watch?” If you can answer yes to that question, and there is a smartwatch that does what it says it’s going to do, is aesthetically pleasing to you and offers some functionality, then that smartwatch should be a no brainer for you. If you’re not a (expensive) watch guy, and especially if you’re also not a tech guy, then I could see you giving a pass to a smartwatch. The aesthetically pleasing part plays a big role for me. I sounded exactly like you, with the original Pebble. While there were things about it that interested me, I wasn’t completely sold. Then came the Pebble Steel. While offering almost the exact same functionality as the original Pebble, it looks like a watch that I would wear, anyway (even if it was a digital dumbwatch), therefore, I’m now interested in actually getting one. The charging doesn’t bother me, as charging electronics have long been my DAILY routine…phones, tablets, headphones, etc…so, 5-7 whole days between charges is a Godsend.

          • Nikuliai

            I agree, 5-7 is pretty awesome for what we’re used right now (I’m actually still shocked I can make my Moto X last 2ΒΌ days when I’m not working), and aesthetically the watch looks awesome to me to (they are in the right spot visually to compete with analog watches now imo), so yeah, this watch is THE smartwatch that makes me want it a little, but there are some features of added value that should make it better than a regular analog watch, like for example a heart rate monitor (the smartwatch that also have the properties of a fitness band is the golden seller to me), I don’t know if I would actually want a GPS monitor since you can use the one on your phone, but if I do it should activate only when you want it to activate (battery drain wise)

            I would also like to have a better screen (nothing ridiculous, just enough to feel like I’m not watching at 150*150 pixels) but this would drain the battery which is the more appealing thing about this watch, so I would -ideally- like it but I wouldn’t trade much battery life for it so it’s an optional feature (dunno if colors are actually needed on a watch, but it could also be good -again- if doesn’t kill the battery or performance too much)

            I would pay $400-$450 for a good smartwatch (since that’s the price I can get the pebble here on my country -> normal pebble at $300), and I would think about getting this steel pebble when it gets better app and phone integration (right now is good, but it’s like buying a PS3 on the release date, you may be exclusive, but you have too little to play with), but the no brainer to me would come with a heart rate monitor or something fit-band ish, since now it’s just a really cool watch I would love to buy but the pragmatic part of my brain keeps preventing me to do :B

  • mikewilson1021

    I’ve had my Pebble for a little over a month now. It’s been great. My wife likes it because I’m not always whipping my…phone out. It’s nice in the car too as I can just glance at my wrist. I do wish the Pebble had a microphone and small speaker for making/taking calls, but for the price that I got it for I’ll take everything that it came with.

  • markgbe

    yes, i want a google watch… butt..if one doesn’t show up i’ll look at a pebble or something

  • buckley101

    I think this picture does a pretty good job showing off the best display for a smart watch:

    First off, the only two displays that are always on and suited best for a smart watch are Qualcomm’s Mirasol display and Pebble’s E-Ink display. But breaking them down…

    1. Samsung’s OLED is not a good display for a smart watch because you have to turn it on every time you want to look at it, defeats the purpose of the convenience and purpose of a smart watch.
    2. Sony’s uses OLED as well…terrible in the sunlight, large power consumption.
    3. Pebble’s E-Ink is always on and convenient, low power consumption, good in sun light. No color, can’t display video.
    4. Qualcomm’s Mirasol display is everything that the E-Ink is except it’s arguably better in the sunlight by its very nature (reflective MEMS IMOD display). It displays color and has a high enough refresh rate to display video which will also allow you to navigate through the watch more smoothly. Power consumption is slightly more than the E-Ink, but they give you a wireless charger for convenience of charging and it lasts 4-6 days. Sure the color reproduction isn’t as good as an OLED, but I believe that Qualcomm’s Mirasol display is hands down the best display for a smart watch. Looking forward to see the next gen version in the making!

    • NexusMan

      I wear an iPad nano as a watch and turn it on when I want to see the time. That is not an inconvenience and in no way defeats the purpose. You’re just pressing a button, it’s not that serious. As for the Pebble, displaying video on that size of a screen is in no way a downside, in my mind. Some may say the same about color, but to each his own.

      • buckley101

        The whole point of a smart watch is to display notifications more conveniently and faster than your phone does. If you have to turn on your watch to view a notification, then you might as well take your phone out. I don’t think it’s really a debate whether a display that is always on is more convenient than a display that you have to turn on in order to see. Besides the reviews that say this is definitely an advantage to the display and smart watches in general, look at Moto X active notifications. You don’t have to turn on your display to see the notifications. It’s super convenient and that’s why it receives so much praise.

        I agree about not watching videos on your smart watch but if you read what I said after, I was proving the point that any UI interaction is significantly more fluid. Changing screens, scrolling through a twitter feed etc. will always be snappier on a Mirasol display. The refresh rate is so poor on an E-Ink display that it actually will limit what an application can do on the watch. For example on a Kindle with an E-Ink display, it takes about 2 seconds just to change the page.

        But hey, you never know how nice something is until you try it hence why you walk around with an “iPad nano” on your wrist.

        • NexusMan

          I hear everything you’re saying, but I’m sorry, pressing a button to turn on your display is in NO WAY the same as taking “your phone out.” Sorry. I’m pointing out that while there are different methods, people are drawn to different watches for different reasons. You can ABSOLUTELY know how nice something is before you try. I know how nice the Pebble Steel is, though I’ve never actually tried it, from my experience with the original Pebble and my research on this new iteration. As for your try at a snarky remark at the end, my “iPad nano,” on my wrist, is not a smartwatch, but is an exquisite, beautiful accessory. It looks damn good, and I get compliments on it multiple times a day, each and every day. So it serves THAT purpose in my life (an attractive accessory), and it will continue to serve that purpose, even after I purchase smartwatches.

  • roberthenderson

    I have a professional job and I get a lot of texts and some phone calls and I would love to be able to know who was calling and silence it without having to dig in my pocket to pull out my Galaxy Note 3.

    • NexusMan

      I have the same use case, and find the matte black pebble steel very appealing.

      • roberthenderson

        I’m going to have to check that out. The main thing will be how it handles calls, calendar and texts.

  • Me

    I would like Google Glasses model Without the Camera. I would like it to hide within the frame of my prescription glasses. I just want it to be an auxiliary screen powered by my smartphone so it can be smaller. Removing the Camera would would remove 90% of the creepiness factor that Google Glass carries. And really I don’t need the camera on my face. It’s cool, but not really worth it because people act differently in front of cameras.

  • Jordi Agricola

    I own an OG Sony SmartWatch (MN2) and I still love it to this day. The battery lasts 3-4 days and it’s not too big. The app selection isn’t amazing, but it does allow me to have all of my notifications readable on my wrist. I couldn’t go back to a non-smart watch, I think.

  • RGiskard

    I wasn’t until the Pebble Steel. If it can look enough like my “real” watch so as not to be an embarrassment at work, I am interested in having it as a discreet notification adjunct to my phone and way to keep calendar/weather handy (no pun intended).

  • Brandon Godbolt

    I wear the fitbit force everyday. If they come out with a smart watch, I’ll be sure to buy it.

    • NexusMan

      I like the Fitbit Force too. Don’t own it, yet, though.

  • Higher_Ground

    It’d be hard to get me to give up my normal watch. Like a lot of people, once I started carrying a cell phone around all the time I had little need for a watch. When I got one for a gift, I found that it’s actually something I look at a lot and it’s much more convenient than having to dig for my phone.
    I think a smartwatch might catch on the same way. It’s not something that I feel a need for, certainly not at the prices they’re at now. But if I had one I’d probably find it pretty useful and end up enjoying it nonetheless. I do worry about scratching the screen up and battery life. The watch I have now isn’t fancy – a citizen ecodrive – but at least I’ll never have to replace/charge the battery.
    Also, I’d like to see more functionality. I know they’re limited in what they can cram into a small space, but technology almost always makes stuff smaller as time moves forward and it won’t be too long before you can fit everything into a watch and band (I think they could try to include some of the internal workings in the band itself).

    • NexusMan

      For me, the primary reason I wear watches is as a fashion accessory. The time is most of the time secondary, and other times more than that in cases where my phone has died or I am in a place where I need to discreetly check the time. A good smartwatch will give me all of those things PLUS additionally functionality. What’s not to like?

  • Deeco

    If the design of the watches improve, then maybe.

  • Brian Himes

    I love watches. Give me a Tissot over a smartwatch anyday

    • NexusMan

      What about a Smarttissot?

  • Walker Citterman

    I’m look forward to the Razer smart band more, I like what they showed off at CES and can’t wait to see what they come out with for the final product. Also the LG band but I’d prefer the full band instead of the clasp

  • Devin Miller

    Am I the only one that’s really excited about the Razer Nabu?

  • turdbogls

    only reason I AM interested is because its a gadget. I really dont feel like i would gain much benefit from using one other than not having to pull out my phone to get the time. I’m still going to pull out my phone to read texts and e-mails and such.

  • Benjamin Mackie

    Yes, but they are all so damn expensive

  • goodm

    I go Sony SW2 and I’m really happy. It makes what I bought it for. It show notifications from my mobile, I know that notion “SmartWatch” is way to much for it, but us a extension of my mobile is working great. Also Sony provide easy SDK with example if someone would like to develop some apps on it.

  • Craig P

    I think you should change the word “interested” to “do you want to buy” or something, because you can’t be “on the fence” if you aren’t interested.

    • NexusMan

      You can. I was interested in the Galaxy Gear, but don’t want to buy one. By interested, I mean, I thought it had some interesting design and concepts and was drawn to do research on it, read reviews, watch videos, etc. Ultimately, for a number of reasons, it’s not for me, but I am curious to see what becomes of future versions. The “Martian,” line however, I am NOT interested in, and therefore after seeing a brief piece on what it was, I had zero “interest” in investigating it any further or giving it any more thought.

  • Deegan1212

    In my opinion the Razer Nabu is the closest to hitting the nail on the head so far. Even though it’s more of a smartband than a smartwatch, I think it’s quite clear that the industry standard for wearable smart devices will see a coalescence of the two eventually. However, I don’t see Razer maintaining a stronghold in this space (partially due to the company’s lack of “cool factor” in the mainstream). Here’s to hoping Google will incorporate similar features in a more stylish, integrated, Googley way because it has a far greater potential to appeal to the mass market and ultimately gain traction.

    • chjapa

      Funny how what I think is cool, the mainstream doesn’t. Am I un-cool? Or super-cool?

      • Steveo

        uncool

      • NexusMan

        Super-cool, because you have an individual sense of style. That’s what accessories are for. What I may wear may be different than what you might wear. And what I may wear to work may be different than what I wear to a party. That’s what makes us and our accessories unique!

    • King Lo

      Anything that looks more like a bangle than a bracelet isn’t going to make it very far.

  • Chuggowitz

    Yes, but not like the galaxy gear. It has the right screen size but is horrendously thick. Putting a camera on it was a poor choice.

  • mike dunham

    Really digging the new Pebble Steel

    • NexusMan

      Me too.