Apple introduced the Apple Watch at a September 2014 event and today we finally heard the rest of the story. Now that we know all about the Apple Watch it's time to take a look at the competition as you consider which smartwatch is best for you.
If you own an iPhone, then your choices include one of the Pebble watches or the Apple Watch. If you own an Android smartphone, then Android Wear or Pebble are your primary options and the Apple Watch is not even something for you to consider.
Windows Phone users are currently limited to the Microsoft Band, which has some basic smartwatch functionality. BlackBerry 10 owners can obtain some limited Pebble connectivity through third party software.
Last week ZDNet's Steve Ranger posted a pictoral history of smartwatches and as I look through them I see that my history runs back to 2002 with the Fossil Palm-OS powered Wrist PDA watch.
Technology has improved significantly since then with Android Wear and Pebble currently serving as the two main smartwatch platforms available to take on the Apple Watch. Let's take a comparative look at some of the key features of these three competitors.
|Apple Watch||Android Wear||Pebble Time|
|Compatibility||iOS||Android||iOS & Android|
|Voice Control||Siri||Google Now||None|
|Battery Life||18 hours||1-2 days||7-10 days|
|User Interface||Touch and buttons||Touch and buttons||Hardware buttons|
|Water Resistance|| |
|IP55 to IP68||5 ATM, no IP rating given|
|Integrated GPS||No||Sony SmartWatch 3||No|
|Price||$349 to $22,000||$199 to $299||$199 to $299|
Apple leads the smartphone world in sales with the iPhone and there is the possibility that its Apple Watch will help raise awareness of this wearable category, possibly even increasing Android Wear and Pebble sales. Pebble has experienced great success in this niche market, passing 1 million watches sold by the end of 2014, but there is potential for lots of growth in this space.
I keep placing the Apple iPhone at the top of my 10 best smartphones lists and as a fan of wearables, I am considering the Apple Watch Sport Edition as a companion to my iPhone 6 Plus. I already own a Sony SmartWatch 3 and pre-ordered a Pebble Time. However, I want to personally give Apple's new wearable a trial too to see if Apple has figured out what is needed for its Watch to keep getting placed back on my wrist.