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Apple Watch Vs. Moto 360 Vs. Samsung Galaxy Gear S: Which Smartwatch to Buy?

Apple Watch Vs. Moto 360 Vs. Samsung Galaxy Gear S: Which Smartwatch to Buy?

In this Techspirited article, we pit three of the best smartwatches against each other. This comparison battle between Apple Watch Vs. Moto 360 Vs. Samsung Galaxy Gear S will give you a better idea as to which smartwatch is suitable for your personal needs.
Satyajeet Vispute
Last Updated: Jan 20, 2018
Did You Know?
With a recent study concluding that close to 40% of consumers in the U.S. are interested in purchasing a smartwatch, experts have forecast that the value of this wearable device market will be more than $12,500 million in the year 2018.
The digital revolution has ensured that intelligence is now commonplace; the artificial kind that is! Digital brains have computed their way into our TVs, washing machines, laptop, phones, homes, cars, and now, even our watches. Yes, that's right. Those quiet little timekeepers we used to wear on our wrists have gone all smart on us! And, no points for guessing correctly that it's the smartphone biggies―Apple, Samsung, and Motorola―who are leading the way.

So, while their flagship models battle it out on the smartphone war-front, these three electronics kings, in their ever-long conquest of the consumer market, are planning on sending forth a new battalion of soldiers to fight a completely different war―the war of the smartwatches. Which one of them shall reign supreme? Let's find out.
Apple Watch Vs. Moto 360 Vs. Samsung Galaxy Gear S
The Look
Image Credit/Source:
apple.com
samsungmobilepress.com
motorola-blog.blogspot.com
Design
Samsung Gear S
Samsung Gear S is certainly the biggest in the competition. It has a gently-curving rectangular display dial which looks like a miniature galaxy smartphone tied to your wrist. Though it has a metal frame, the design-make is mostly of plastic. However, it is pretty high quality and gives a solid overall feel. It has a single 'home' button on the front facing side of the display, which is similar to that found on the Galaxy series of mobile phones. It comes with thick plastic wrist-straps, with a metal lock and a metal brace.
Moto 360
Moto 360 falls in the middle-sized category. It is smaller than the Samsung, yet bigger than Apple. Also, it has another unique attribute; a round display dial which makes it look like a traditional watch, albeit, a way more classy one. It is made from fine-crafted steel. It has a single button on one side, which looks like the crown found on any other watch. All-in-all, this unique round design really goes a long way to enhance the appeal of this watch.
Apple Watch
Apple's watch has an almost square dial. They claim that it's manufactured with precision, and trust me, it shows. The watch oozes quality with all the different materials used in its making, blending in perfectly with each other. The fancy digital crown is followed by a quick access button, and both are placed to one side of the watch. Apple is the only one in this competition that offers its watches in two different sizes. The smaller one is more suitable for tiny wrists, especially for females, while the larger one is designed for men. The watch is available in 3 different editions: Apple Watch (made from stainless steel alloy), Watch Sport (made from lightweight aluminum), and Watch Edition (made from processed gold).
Display
Samsung Gear S
The Gear S has a large, 2-inch, curved, Super AMOLED, capacitive touchscreen display. It has a resolution of 360×480, and 300 pixels per inch color density. The touchscreen is both eye-catching and responsive. and its color representation is pretty vibrant and bright. It is certainly one of the best smartwatch displays in the market.
Moto 360
The Moto 360 hasn't brought with it the anticipated OLED screen. But the 1.56 circular LCD capacitive touchscreen isn't a bad trade-off either. It has a 320×290 resolution, 205 pixels per inch, and is quite bright. The contrast ratio is also optimum, and there is sufficient visibility under direct sunlight. The touchscreen is pretty fluid and responsive. It might not be the best there is, but being circular, it is certainly unique.
Apple Watch
Regarding the specifics of its watch's display, Apple remains tight-lipped. What they have disclosed is that, just like in the iPhones, the watch too will have a retina display. They claim it will have a very high pixel density, and will also be pressure sensitive, allowing the user to access more features by applying variable levels of pressure on the screen. A special feature is the introduction of the 'digital crown', which essentially is a rotating dial that allows you to scroll through the menus without having to cover the already small display.
Operating Systems and Compatibility
Samsung Gear S
The Samsung Gear S is most independent of the three. It is the only smartwatch here that can operate without a smartphone, thanks to the sim-card slot on its back. However, if you want to synchronize it with your smartphone, you better make sure that it's one of the 20 Galaxy series models, because it just won't work with any other. Also, contrary to expectations, it runs on, not the Android, but rather on Samsung's own Tizen O.S.
Moto 360
Moto 360 runs the Android wear O.S., and is thus compatible with any smartphone running Android 4.3 or higher. Hence, while going for the Moto 360, the only thing you will need to look out for is that your smartphone is running the latest version of Android, and you should have no problems.
Apple Watch
Apple runs its proprietary Watch O.S., and is very picky when it come to mobile partners. It will not pair with anyone, other than an Apple phone. If you are an Apple loyalist, then this is good news, because it will pair not only with the Apple iPhone 6 and 6 plus, but also with the older generation iPhone 5, 5S, and 5C. However, if you ever plan to switch platforms in the future, beware, because your Apple Watch won't be compatible with them.
Functionality and Features
Samsung Gear S
Samsung Gear S is presently the only watch that has a sim-card slot, and which can connect over a 2G/3G network. This allows the wearer to use it as a standalone device, without requiring to pair it with a smartphone to receive or post updates over the Internet. Other connectivity options include Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and USB 2.0. The watch face is customizable with a variety of available looks. The Gear S can couple with your Galaxy phone or work as a standalone device, presenting you with all your social media updates and notifications. The screen is large enough to give you a clear viewing of the various menus, and the swipe-to-scroll on Tizen works perfectly. Gear S is IP67 certified, making it dust-proof and waterproof, so you can wear it anytime and anyplace.
Moto 360
The Moto360 comes packed with a lot of features. It allows you to customize the watch-face of the display, by using the companion app called connect. It runs Android wear, and therefore, all the standard features are present. The watch, if allowed by the user, can grab all the data from your Android phone, including Twitter notifications, Google Now Cards, etc., and make it available to you on your wrist. As is commonplace in most smartwatches, you can scroll and swipe across the touchscreen to view and access various menus and notifications on the display. Alternatively, you can make use of the voice command feature for convenience and ease of use. Like the Gear S, the Moto 360 is also IP67 certified, making it dust- and water-resistant.
Apple Watch
The Apple Watch wakes up the display when you raise your arm. Its menu shows a number of lightweight apps which can be scrolled very fluidly using the touchscreen. The digital crown can be rotated to zoom in on a particular aspect of the display without blocking it with your finger. The button below the crown, when pressed, brings up a list of your favorite contacts. The pressure-sensitive touchscreen allows you to do a lot over the limited display size. Another unique feature is its ability to share simple gesture-based notifications with other Apple Watch users. For instance, by placing two fingers on the touchscreen, you can send your heart rate to another Watch user, whose watch will vibrate in tandem with your pulse.
Time for Fitness
Samsung Gear S
Samsung Gear S is very fitness-oriented. Its solid rubber strap and sleek curved design are all indicative of that. Along with all the standard sensors, such as heart rate monitor (on the back of the watch), gyroscope, pedometer, etc., the Gear S, being 3G-enabled, can track your daily activity even more effectively using the GPS. Samsung has partnered with Nike, and the resultant 'Nike+ Running' app enables you to earn Nike fuel points. This is more than enough incentive for most people to keep running. Samsung's own S Health app helps you track your heart rate to better monitor your fitness and activity levels.
Moto 360
Moto 360 houses a pedometer and a heart rate monitor (located on the underside of the watch). The 'Connect' app in this watch uses these sensors to track your activity, and presents you with your heart's BPM and the number of steps you take daily. It has a 'Heart Rate' app which has a daily activity monitor, where you can enter your vitals such as height, weight, etc., and it tells you how active you are. It also periodically monitors your BPM, and encourages you to get at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise daily.
Apple Watch
Going with the fitness trend, Apple too has made the Watch fitness-oriented. It has an 'Activity' app which works in conjunction with the in-built sensors. This app displays a graphical plot in the form of three rings, titled Move, Exercise, and Stand. Together, they present you with an overview of your daily activity level. Another app, the 'Workout' app, is designed to be used during cardio workout. It utilizes the watch's sensors to show real-time stats, such as the calories burnt, the distance covered, the speed, etc.
Battery Capacity
Samsung Gear S
Samsung Gear S has only a 300 mAh battery. Samsung claims that it can last 2 whole days on a single charge, but, realistically speaking, without 3G on, you can expect about a single day's worth of juice, and no more. On the brighter side, the Gear's charger has a tiny battery embedded within it. Thus, essentially, you can charge the charger, and then carry and use it to charge your smartwatch on the go.
Moto 360
The Moto 360 has a 320 mAh battery. Though it as not as big as some of the others in the market, it can still get you through an entire day (12 hours), if you charge it every night. Also, unlike its competitors, it has the more futuristic wireless charging, where all you have to do is place the watch on a charging dock, and voila, it starts charging!
Apple Watch
There is no information on Apple Watch's battery capacity, as the company hasn't disclosed it yet.
Price and Availability
Samsung Gear S
Samsung Gear S is due to be released in November 2014, and should be available in the price range of $250 - $300.
Moto 360
The Moto 360 has already been released, and costs a reasonable $250.
Apple Watch
The Apple Watch will be available for strapping in early 2015, and should cost you around $350.
We can surely attest that all three smartwatches, in our comparison, are worthy contenders, with each having their own distinct advantages and drawbacks. So now the question arises - which one should you buy? Well, honestly speaking, it's not very difficult to answer that question, the reason being simply that, the three smartwatch giants haven't given us the consumers, much of a choice!
Samsung Galaxy users are better off buying the compatible Gear S, while Apple loyalists too are stuck with the Apple Watch, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. The only one with more compatibility benefits is the Moto 360. However, some may not find its round dial very suitable for all the Android-related functions. So, really, all we can do is thank our stars, count our blessings, and hope that we get the best, because these matches are made in the consumer-electronics heaven.