Saturday, June 28, 2014

Android LG G Watch: First Impressions

My co-worker Ruchi gave me the LG G Watch to try this weekend, and I immediately thought it to be way too difficult for the average consumer to understand.  Since it has no power button, you have to plug it into the cradle to enable.  Also, for developers who didn't attend the I/O conference, you have to signup to join the Google Wearables Group before you can be whitelisted to download the Android Wear app.  Figuring that I had to wait at least an hour, I decided to try to use the watch later.

A few hours later, the phone defaulted into some type of retail mode, where it demo's the various functionality of the phone.  To exit this mode, I had to factory reset the watch to retry the pairing process.  The Android Wear app itself is buggy: it complains that you have to update your Google Play Services even when you have the latest version.  The smartwatch eventually showed up for pairing on my tablet, but then it failed to find Internet connectivity even though the WiFi was fully functioning.  Now I'm stuck in a state where the tablet can see the watch for pairing, but fails to do anything after the next step.

This launch for the Android wearables seems to have been rushed for the Google I/O conference. Here's hoping Google's actual release next week will actual polish all these issues.  For now, it feels like a half-baked product.