After almost perfecting the smartphones for the mainstream, Manufacturers are trying to perfect the smart watches for the masses. We are yet far away till the smart watches get as popular as smartphones are, we are looking at different devices from many OEMs which actually are better products compared a year before. Today, we have Asus Zenwatch 2 (the smaller 1.45 inch variant) that we have reviewed here at Androidpure after using it almost for a week, making it the first smartwatch that we have reviewed at Androidpure.
ZenWatch 2 specifications
- Display : 1.45 inch AMOLED display with 280×280 pixels resolution, 2.5D curved Corning Gorilla Glass 3
- CPU : 1.2 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 400
- RAM : 512 MB
- Storage : 4 GB
- OS : Android Wear
- Size: 45.2 x 37.2 x 10.4 mm
- Dust and Water Resistant (IP67)
- Bluetooth 4.1 LE, Wi-Fi b/g, Single mic
- Sensors: 6-axis (gyrometer and accelerometer)
- Battery : 400 mAh
Design and Build Quality
Asus Zenwatch 2 looks great in terms of design and build quality. It comes with 1.45 inch AMOLED display with a pixel density of 273 ppi and resolution of 280×280 pixels. On a small screen, the display looks decent enough and thanks to AMOLED display with 2.5D curved glass, you won’t feel that the resolution is a bit low. The big bezels though may distract you and one of the areas that Asus needs to work upon. Yet if you can ignore these big bezels, the Zenwatch looks great to wear. The rectangular steel frame all around the watch gives it a sturdy look while keeping the elegance. Our own preference is a circular watch, but yours can be rectangular one.
You can see a crown at one side just like conventional watches which is basically a toggle switch which when pressed puts the display ON or dim it out. The leather straps are good and can be interchanged easily.
Hardware and Battery life
Zenwatch 2 is powered by a 1.2 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 processor with 512 MB of RAM running on Android Wear operating system. It is backed by a battery of 400 mAh capacity. It comes with a unique charging port (magnetic kind of port) which connects with the charger itself when you place the charging cable near it. Even though this port is convenient and better than usual USB ports, yet sometimes you may find that it’s not charging if the Zenwatch is not placed properly. It comes with fast charging and can charge the watch to full 100% in just around 45 minutes.
The battery life lasts for 1 full day on average use with the always ON display option ON (the DIM display), but with moderate or heavy use you need to charge it within the same day. Asus claims battery to last full two days, but that’s not the case if you are using the watch to even its half the potential.
It comes with just 6-axis gyro-meter and accelerometer sensors with no heart rate monitor to keep the costs down. Similarly there is no GPS and you have to depend on your smartphone GPS.
In terms of performance, it’s not as fast as you expect it to be even after considering the low price compared to other smart watches. It lags a bit and the lag is quite visible while using Zenwatch 2. But considering that it’s just a smartwatch and not a smartphone, those lag issues won’t bother you too much.
Operating System and Features
Zenwatch 2 is powered by Android Wear operating system and doesn’t lack when it comes to features. One of the best features being the ability to change the watch face on the go almost instantly with numerous (more than 50) pre loaded watch faces available. Instead of reading just the notifications, you can read the full messages, emails etc., without pulling up your smartphone. You can even pick a call and talk using the speaker on the watch.
There are a lot of apps available on the watch such as Google Maps, Asus Weather, Calendar, Google Fit, Find My Phone, Agenda, Alarm, Asus Wellness etc. You can track your fitness activity right on the watch itself using the Google fit, but yes there is no heart rate tracker. You can use gestures to control the Zenwatch 2 effectively. There is a do not disturb mode, time telling mode and Cinema mode available. The connectivity options include WiFi and Bluetooth worked without any issues and the watch was always connected to the smartphone.
If Asus can fix the big bezels and offer a better battery life along with some improvement in the performance, we sure have a clear winner among smart watches. Even in-spite of these drawbacks, Asus Zenwatch 2 offers a lot of features with great design at an affordable price. It is available at a price of Rs. 14,999 at the moment. As the smart watches evolve each day, we sure will get more compelling Zenwatch in its next avatar.