This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. OK
Review Authored by:

Motorola Moto 360 (2015) review: the one to watch

Update: Marshmallow coming

Authored by: Camila Rinaldi — 5 months ago

The Moto 360 second generation is a solid improvement over last year's model. Motorola has given its smartwatch a new processor and a few design tweaks, plus it now comes in two sizes and remains super customizable. After a week of using it, however, I still get the impression that the Moto 360 will spend another year behind the competition. Read our full Moto 360 (2015) review to find out why.

Update: Marshmallow has been confirmed for the Moto 360, find out more details in the software section below.

Rating

Good

  • Highly customizable through Moto Maker
  • Easy strap removal
  • IP67 water resistance certification
  • Android Wear is now a decent platform
  • Wireless charging dock is practical and stylish

Bad

  • The screen is not 100 percent round
  • Still very thick
  • Battery life

Moto 360 (2015) release date and price

The Moto 360 second generation was announced on September 2, 2015, and is now available from Moto Maker in selected regions. The price of the base model price is higher than last year, at US$299, which doesn't include the patterned bezel (that's an extra US$20), the gold body (which costs US$30 more) or metal bands (which will set you back an additional US$50). Add all those extras up and you have quite a pricey smartwatch on your hands (or wrist).

AndroidPIT moto 360 2015 11
Moto Maker lets you customize the Moto 360 to your liking. / © ANDROIDPIT

Moto 360 (2015) design and build quality

Are people looking for a smartwatch or a classic watch? You wouldn’t wear a smartwatch just to check emails or the time, right? You want it to look good too. In this sense, the new Moto 360 is one of the best smartwatches on the market. You can customize the Moto 360 in many ways with Moto Maker, from the steel case to the bracelet, so you can get a smartwatch that looks just how you want it to.

AndroidPIT moto 360 2015 52
The Moto 360 comes in two sizes: 46mm or 42mm.  / © ANDROIDPIT

For this review, I received a voucher from Motorola, to enable me to do just that. The shopping experience begins with the size options: 46 mm or 42 mm. Next you can choose the color you want from a total of eight main color options and three for the color of the steel. Finally, you can choose between six bands in two different materials: leather or metal. Some of the choices, such as bracelet with double back, cost more. But the whole customization process was quick and easy.

Moto 360 2nd gen 08
Motorola's leather double strap costs a little extra, but looks great. / © ANDROIDPIT
Moto 360 2nd gen 07
US$10 is worth the investment to look good all day. / © ANDROIDPIT

There are three key differences between the 2015 Moto 360 and the original model. The steel case now has a classic band fitting. Removing the band is easy, thanks to its adjustable adapter. The second is that the main hardware button, the crown, has moved from the 3 o’clock to 2 o’clock position, which should stop you activating it by accident. The third is that there are now two size options.

AndroidPIT moto 360 2015 53
Spot the differences between the new Moto 360 (left) and the first incarnation (right).  / © ANDROIDPIT

However, one of my biggest criticisms also comes down to the size of the device. Last year’s model was too thick, and unfortunately, Motorola has repeated the same mistake in 2015. Looking at the table below, you can see that even with the slight difference in battery capacity, the new and the old model have almost identical dimensions.

AndroidPIT moto 360 2015 2
The thickness of the Moto 360 remains the same. / © ANDROIDPIT
  Moto 360 2015 (46mm) Moto 360 2015 (42mm) Moto 360
Height 46mm 42mm 46mm
Width 46mm 42mm 46mm
Thickness 11.4mm 11.4mm 11.5mm
Battery 400 mAh 300 mAh 320 mAh

On the back, the Moto 360 2015 has a heart rate monitor, which collects data every five minutes and provides analysis of the wearer's heartbeats for up to 24 hours at a time. The new IP67 rating means the Moto 360 has good water resistance, but keep in mind that that applies to the watch itself, not, for example, the leather strap, which will suffer from repeated exposure to moisture.

AndroidPIT moto 360 2015 45
The heartrate sensor of the Moto 360 is fast. / © ANDROIDPIT
AndroidPIT moto 360 2015 47
The straps are easily detachable and can be removed quickly. / © ANDROIDPIT

In short, the great success of the Moto 360 (2015) is its customizability. LG doesn't offer this, neither does Samsung, Apple nor Sony. The only manufacturer that comes close to Motorola in the customization of its wearables is Huawei. In this regard, the second generation of the Moto 360 has a big lead over the competition.

Moto 360 (2015) display

The new Moto 360 display is 1.37 inches on the smaller watch and 1.56 inches on the larger option. Both use IPS LCD technology at resolutions of 360 x 325 (263 ppi) and 360 x 330 (233 ppi), respectively. 

AndroidPIT moto 360 2015 50
The Moto 360 (2015) is totally round, but thanks to the sensors, the display is not. / © ANDROIDPIT

Reflections coming off the display have reduced considerably compared with the last device. However, it still might bother you at angles of 30 degrees or more. The Moto 360 (2015) screen brightness is good enough that you can easily tell the difference between the different levels. Of course, screen brightness is directly connected to battery life and a positive point here is the fact that you can easily read from the screen, even on the lowest brightness level.

Touchscreen sensitivity was not always great during my testing. This was frustrating at times, especially when I was in a hurry and trying to launch an application quickly.

AndroidPIT moto 360 2015 3
We wish Motorola would get rid of that black area at the bottom of the screen. / © ANDROIDPIT

Overall, the screen is quite good, but I hope the third generation of the Moto 360 reviews the size of the bezel and the position of sensors that prevent the cause the black dead space at the bottom of the display and prevent it from being completely circular.

Moto 360 (2015) software

The Moto 360 (2nd gen) runs the latest version of Android Wear, which means it has considerable improvements over last year’s watch, including support for Wi-Fi, for example. There are some good-looking pre-installed watch faces too, some of which also act as widgets.

AndroidPIT moto 360 2015 12
The Moto 360 (2015) offers 14 native watch faces, but you have extra options in the Play Store. / © ANDROIDPIT

Two features that most caught my attention during my Moto 360 (2015) were the remote service for Android TV, music services, and applications and displays for sports, which give you information that matters when you need it.

The software is well-integrated with the hardware and the heart rate sensor and step counter are accurate. However, there are reports that the accuracy of the statistics generated by this type of device is still only at experimental level, so you shouldn't regard this information as entirely scientific.

AndroidPIT moto 360 2015 21
The Moto 360 in use with the Android Wear app. / © ANDROIDPIT

Using the official Google app, iPhone users running iOS version 8.2 or higher can now also pair with smartwatches using Android Wear. However, syncing an iPhone with the Moto 360 (2015) proved quite a poor experience. More on that below.

The Moto 360 (2015) will now be getting Marshmallow within the coming weeks. The update will bring a whole host of features like navigation with gestures, new voice integration expansion and support for popular apps like Telegram, Viber and WhatsApp. Find out the full details at our Android Wear page

Moto 360 (2015) performance

The Moto 360 packs the quad-core Snapdragon 400 processor running at 1.2 GHz. It has the same 4 GB of internal storage and 512 MB of RAM as the previous model. But the GPU is now the Adreno 305 running at 450 MHz. These specs should suffice for most situations. The new Moto 360 also has Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0 support, meaning you can now use it without tethering it to a smartphone.

AndroidPIT moto 360 2015 32
The Moto 360's hardware responds well. / © ANDROIDPIT

Android Wear is now compatible with smartphones running both Android and iOS. So if you own an iPhone 6, for example, you can realistically consider the new Moto 360 – or any current Android smartwatch – as a more affordable alternative to the Apple Watch. 

I tested the new ​​Moto 360 with the iPhone 6 and, despite problems with pairing, it was possible to use them together. The experience of using the Moto 360 (2015) with iOS was limited because many of the apps don’t work between them. You can perform voice searches, for example, but not send messages using WhatsApp.

AndroidPIT moto 360 2015 15
The Moto 360 runs the latest version of Android Wear and supports Android and iOS devices. / © ANDROIDPIT

Among the Moto 360 sensors are an accelerometer, an ambient light sensor, a gyroscope for monitoring heart rate and the vibrating motor and touch recognition (haptics).

Voice recognition is critical to making a good smartwatch and the Moto 360 (2015) has a similar microphone to most other smartwatches. This is frustrating, because Motorola has one of the best voice recognition engines in the business, as seen on the Moto X Pure Edition and Droid Turbo 2. The main limitations of the microphone may be related to its placement at the bottom of the device, which just isn't an effective location for it. I’ve been using a smartwatch since Android Wear’s earliest days and the most logical location for the microphone is the high up on the right-hand side of a smartwatch.

AndroidPIT moto 360 2015 42
The microphone placement of the Moto 360 (2015) isn't optimal. / © ANDROIDPIT

One aspect of the hardware performance that can't be overstated is that you can pair the Moto 360 (2015) with Bluetooth devices other than your smartphone. If you want to go for a jog or pick up some groceries, you can leave your cell phone at home. If you want to play music, all you need is some wireless earphones, and you can listen to the tracks that are stored on the watch.

Moto 360 (2015) battery

The 42 mm version of the Moto 360 has a 300 mAh battery, and the 46 mm model has a 400 mAh battery. Motorola engineers told me during the launch that this watch will run for two days without needing to be charged. However, within 10 days of use, I couldn’t ever make it a full day on one charge. But remember that the model I tested has the smaller 300 mAh battery – the larger one may last longer. 

ANDROIDPIT MOTO 360 2 2015 ifa2015 19
The 300 mAh battery in the 42 mm Moto 360 struggled to last a day. / © ANDROIDPIT

The plus point here is wireless charging. The well-designed dock charges your Moto 360 quickly and easily.

There are some steps you can take to keep the battery Moto 360 (2015) running for longer too, such as dimming the screen, disabling Wi-Fi when it isn’t needed and disabling the the 'screen always-on' function.

Moto 360 (2015) technical specifications

    • Type:
    • Watch
    • Model:
    • 42 mm
      46 mm
    • Manufacturer:
    • Motorola
    • Dimensions:
    • 42 x 42 x 11.4 mm (42 mm)
      46 x 46 x 11.4 mm (46 mm)
    • Weight:
    • Sorry, not yet available!
    • Battery size:
    • 300 mAh (42 mm)
      400 mAh (46 mm)
    • Screen size:
    • 1.37 in (42 mm)
      1.56 in (46 mm)
    • Display technology:
    • LCD
    • Screen:
    • 360 x 325 pixels (263 ppi) (42 mm)
      360 x 330 pixels (233 ppi) (46 mm)
    • Front camera:
    • Sorry, not yet available!
    • Rear camera:
    • Sorry, not yet available!
    • Flashlight:
    • Sorry, not yet available!
    • Android version:
    • Android Wear
    • RAM:
    • 512 MB
    • Internal storage:
    • 4 GB
    • Removable storage:
    • Sorry, not yet available!
    • Chipset:
    • Qualcomm Snapdragon 400
    • Number of cores:
    • 4
    • Max. clock speed:
    • 1.2 GHz
    • Connectivity:
    • Bluetooth 4.0

Final verdict

The experience of using the 2015 Moto 360 is completely different to using the 2014 Moto 360. This is because Android Wear is now a much more complete operating system. The chance to customize your own model has also made the customer experience better, and  being able to charge the device quickly and without fuss makes slotting the Moto 360 (2015) into your daily routine pretty easy.

AndroidPIT moto 360 2015 35
Android Wear improvements mean you won't need your smartphone all the time. / © ANDROIDPIT

Despite the evolution of Android Wear, the operating system still needs further development. The Apple Watch and the Samsung Gear S2 are Motorola's major competitors in the wearables market, and they offer extra software that interacts more coherently with the hardware, thanks to features such as Apple’s Force Touch, or Samsung’s rotating ring for selecting different menu options.

What your top pick from among the new smartwatches options on the market? Could the Moto 360 (2015) be your next smartwatch? Tell us what you think in the comments. 

Camila Rinaldi is a journalist who was born in Brazil. She is Italian on her father's side and German on her mother's side, but is a world citizen by conviction. Camila has lived in Berlin since 2011 and lives in constant discovery. She is dying for Google Glass (which works) and expects an Asian manufacturer to solve the smartphone battery problem.

18 comments

Write new comment:
  • Grab this smartwatch online now only on SmartwatchOffers.com

  • I never wanted to hit a woman in my life. And then I saw a woman with a mustache tattoo on her finger. I guess there's a first time for everything.

  • Moto 360 2, Apple watch 2, Microsoft Band 2 and more is now on sale only on goo.gl/0UwpBA

  • Very BAD experience with MOTO 360 2nd generation 46mm.

    I paid the extra 50£ for the metal wristband but when i got it i realized that it was very very short (16 cm) . I have a normal wrist and it did not fit. On their website thay say that the watch comes with 4 extra link that allow to fit larger wrists but in my box there was only one.

    I contacted Motorola customer service and after 2 calls, 2 chats and 3 emails they told me that they have no extra links and they cannot help me. the only solution was sending back the watch.

    What kind of company are they? they run out of wristband links and they deliver the watches hoping that it will work.

    it is pathetic, they lose 300£ and a client because they cannot deliver a wristband that fits normal people or an extra-link that costs 10 pence?

    All this just suggests that they just improvise and they cannot compete with Apple or Samsung.

    Samsung with their smartwatch delivers 2 bands - 2 different size so there is no risk or problem.

    bye bye MOTO - never again.

  • Now grab the latest Moto Phones online only at goo.gl/2jBb2d

  • doc sunny 7 months ago Link to comment

    Dont buy motorola watch .
    i had moto360 which got detached from strap in 1 month.
    submitted it to service centre.its been more than 3 months i havent received replacement. they dont have facility and expertise to repair these watches in india. motorola india is very rude.when ever i contact them on mail or phone they just extend the date 15 days saying parts are stuck in customs.
    service centre has 4 customers with same problem in jaipur.
    my advice never buy from motorola.

    • "my advice never buy from motorola" IF YOU LIVE IN INDIA. No complaints for me here in the US so yeah

  • Clement 7 months ago Link to comment

    How can i get the watch in canada? I checked the motorola website an i couldn't order it

  • Now grab the latest Moto Phones online only at goo.gl/2jBb2d

  • Michael 8 months ago Link to comment

    Poor accuracy. The microphone is not on the bottom of the watch, which is quite easy to verify. it's towards the bottom but on the side and its placement is fine. The watch also looks great and the 42mm version (which I have) is NOT too thick. Not only do people ask what it is and think it's very nice but it's also much thinner than my slimmer model G-watch I use for running. You can easily get a full day if you turn off the backlight and tap to view, which works surprisingly well. The watch isn't perfect and has its flaws but it's miles ahead of the Apple Watch in many ways, especially the fact that you can actually get at least a day of usage where the Apple Watch, even at best rating, won't get you though a single day. While smart watches are still a bit gimmicky and a convenience for those with money to spend, this one is surprisingly good and the watch I decided to wear every day.

  • Moto 360 is definitely one of the best smartwatches today not only for its look but its functionality. It offers true worth to your money which makes it a favorite.

  • I have the 2nd gen and i put it the charger and left it for an hour and a half and it said 91% the whole time! I took ot off and put it back on immediately and it said 84%. Now I tried it again after an hour of leaving it alone on the charger again but this time it just shows the normal screen, however the light on the bottom of the charger is active so idk what is going on!

  • ALEX 9 months ago Link to comment

    I ordered a customized Moto 360, 2nd generation, smartwatch online. I did so by accessing Motorola's own website. They charged me twice for the same protection plan, even though I made sure to click on said plan's link only once. I called the next day. Motorola personnel were mostly evasive. To be sure, the first customer representative to take my call blamed me for the mistake. After an inordinate amount of time, he "escalated" (corporate lingo) the case. A second costumer representative, who happened to be profoundly inarticulate, also took an inordinate amount of time to let me know that the case needed yet again to be "escalated". I should point out that before placing the call I had received an invoice from Motorola that displays the duplicate charge very clearly. A day later, I phoned once again, only to be subjected to the same Kafkaesque routine. I was told in no uncertain terms that my order could not be cancelled. A few days ago, however, I learned that the original delivery date--October 02--needed to be moved because of "technical difficulties with Motorola's ordering and shipment systems". I keep wondering whether they had already begun to assemble my watch when I called to complain about the duplicate charge. All of the customer representatives with whom I spoke implied that the watch was already being assembled. In light of the fact that Motorola has refused to reverse the duplicate charge, I have informed my credit card company that I am disputing it. I understand that factories and vendors can experience glitches and delays. By my lights, that is not inherently objectionable. What I do find reprehensible is Motorola's refusal to recognize that it has mistakenly billed me twice for the same service and that it is obligated to reverse the unwarranted charge promptly.

  • Jesse 10 months ago Link to comment

    lol what a terrible article, it seems the author knows nothing about the subject matter, firstly the band on the original 360 CAN be removed quite easily and it also charges wirelessly, second is how does the author know nothing about the current version of android wear? its been out on all watches for a while now. and lastly the moto 360 is not ugly, in fact its the only smart watch out that actually LOOKS like a watch a normal person would wear, Androidpit, hire better writers.

  • So you wrote a review on a watch you spent no time with? I'm confused...

  • bradley 10 months ago Link to comment

    lol @ 354 and 313ppi, I sincerely wish!

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. More info

Got it!