For those of you that live in an apartment and love new technology that helps you get sh!t done, smart home products are both a blessing and a curse. Many products require installation, like a home thermostat or door lock. These installations are often frowned upon by landlords, and are sometimes useless even if they could be installed.
For your convenience, I’ve put together a list of apartment friendly smart home products that won’t get you kicked out and make your life easier:Read More »
Now before you roll your eyes and close my blog because of another rose gold thing: stop! The Q Venture also comes in black, silver, and gold!
Lately I’ve been trying to decide if I want to take the leap and buy a smartwatch, so I decided to rent this watch through Expese first (you can read all about them here). As soon as the watch arrived, I was excited to take it out of the box and start peeling off the plastic! Read More »
Update 1/2/19: Expese has dropped their monthly rental subscription, and now only offers a specific rate for each product you’d like to try. You can find more info about the change here: https://expeserto.com/faq
I love new consumer tech. I love learning about it, reading reviews on it, and of course, peeling the plastic off. The one thing I don’t love? The prices. I always want to run to the store (or Amazon) to get my hands on whatever shiny new thing was just released, but one look at my bank account stops me.
At this point, I’ve had almost every edition of Fitbit. Which is strange when you know me. Regardless, I was very curious about the new Fitbit. You know how much I loved the Moto 360 (and if you don’t, go find out now!) so I was looking forward to testing out the Fitbit Blaze. Turns out, it’s a fitness tracker first, smartwatch…later.
I started off with notifications on. I’m one to leave my phone in another room and be too lazy to grab it when I hear it go off, so notifications on another device are great. Unfortunately, the Blaze only shows about 4 things, and they’re all default apps. I very quickly turned off notifications, because while it showed messages, they wouldn’t go away until you cleared them, even if you’ve read and responded to them on your phone.
So the Blaze isn’t very good as a smartwatch, which isn’t surprising coming from a company that creates fitness trackers. But if I’m going to spend $200 on a fitness tracker, I really don’t want it to just count my steps and tell me my heart rate.
I’m going to be honest here…I stopped wearing the watch on a daily basis about two weeks after I got it. The size of the Blaze is far too big for daily wear, it doesn’t look very good and it was useless as a smartwatch with notifications turned off. I understand that these trackers are designed for people who exercise on a regular basis, or are actual athletes, but I just couldn’t get into this Fitbit. Maybe it’s because it wasn’t rose gold…
As with most new technology, people typically don’t understand the need for something new and innovative. Before I got my first smartphone I didn’t understand why you would need to access the Internet wherever you were, at all times. Before I got an iPhone I didn’t understand the appeal of having every app in the world available to you. So when smartwatches first started getting popular, I didn’t understand why you would need your notifications on your wrist. I’ve even had this same smartwatch before! So why would this time be any different?
First off, the Moto 360 now connects to almost any iPhone or Android. This meant I could connect my personal phone to it, and wouldn’t need a second phone like I did the first time around. Second, this 360 is rose gold. I repeat, rose gold. (If you didn’t know how weirdly obsessed with rose gold I am, you clearly aren’t following me on Instagram, so shame on you.) So I decided to give the smartwatch another try. And holy cow, was I impressed. This time around, it surprised me how much I liked being able to look at my wrist instead of pulling my phone out of my pocket. The 360 had no issues at all connecting to my iPhone, and every notification showed up on the watch. I was able to swipe away notifications which also got rid of them on my phone’s Notification Center, and each notification had a particular look to it, which was a nice way to differentiate texts versus Instagram likes versus emails.
The downsides about the Moto 360 were the notifications and the battery life. I didn’t like that I wasn’t able to interact with notifications on the watch. I’m sure this is because it’s a Motorola watch connecting to an Apple phone, so I understand. Although, I would have liked to have been able to respond to texts, because having to pull out your phone defeats the purpose of a smartwatch. I was able to “answer” calls using the watch, but I still had to talk through my phone. Then comes the battery life. I was able to get one full day out of it, but never two full days. I did have the “always on” option turned on, which meant that although the screen went black, the clock face was always on, and I’m sure that drains battery quickly. This wasn’t a huge issue for me, because I took the watch off to sleep anyway, so I just put it on its little charging station and it was good to go for the next day.
I would definitely say I’m a smartwatch convert now. I like what it can do and am interested to see where they go from here. Especially if they keep making them in rose gold!