A closer look at LG’s circular G Watch R

LG was one of the first out of the gate with an Android Wear smartwatch and, well, let’s just say there was room for improvement. The original G Watch suffered from short battery life, a high price and a homely design. Now, just a few months later, LG is back with the G Watch R, the first smartwatch with a completely circular screen (read: no black strip at the bottom, like on the Moto 360). Unfortunately, the G Watch R doesn’t correct all of the original’s shortcomings – it has a similar-sized battery, rated for up to two days, and an LG rep told us it will be more expensive.

This – and the Moto360 – looks like the first smartwatch that appeals to me. The Gear things from Samsung, the Pebble devices, and so on, all look like you strapped a computer to your wrist that happens to be able to display the time. They look like computers, not watches. This, however, is starting to look like an actual watch – that also happens to display Android notifications.

Today, I devised the funeral test. You see, a watch is something I always wear when I’m outside the house, no exceptions. All my regular watches can be worn at any time, during any occasion – even a funeral. The moment I can wear a smartwatch to a funeral and not look like an inconsiderate ass (because it looks like a smartphone and thus people might think I’m checking Twitter or something – which I will not be doing, of course), that’s the smartwatch that will be a winner, because it can replace an actual watch.

This LG watch is getting closer, but it’s still not there – it’s still bigger than even my biggest watch (the red one in this photo), and looks uncomfortable. However, it’s getting closer, and I’m very curious to see what Apple will come up with.


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