Moto 360 Sport Review
The Moto 360 Sport is a wearable smart watch created by Motorola. Priced at around $300, the watch is part of the second generation of Moto 360 smartwatches. Is it worth the price? Read our review!
What is the Moto 360 Sport?
The Moto 360 Sport is part of the family of second generation Moto 360 smartwatches that launched in 2015. When Motorola announced its second generation of Moto 360 smartwatches, it claimed that the Sport edition of the watch would arrive several months later than the original edition. And so we have the Moto 360 Sport watch, which launched in February 2016.
The watch has a number of improvements over the original, most of which are designed to make it more suited for an athletic lifestyle. Improvements include:
- Better display for outdoor use
- Built-in GPS
- Sweat-resistant rubber strap
The watch has the same 1.37-inch circular screen as the second generation Moto 360. The main difference between the two is that the Sport uses a hybrid display, where a reflective panel has been added to the LCD screen to make it easier to view the watch in the sun.
Another key feature is that the watch has a built-in GPS. That may not seem like a big deal – but not all smart watches have a built-in GPS. Instead, they rely on your phone’s GPS, which means they have to be paired to your phone in order to work. With the Moto 360 Sport, you can use it without pairing it to your GPS. You can slap on your watch and go for a run without worrying about logging your route.
Moto 360 Sport Features
The Moto 360 Sport uses Moto Body software, which is great for tracking your daily and weekly activity. It works in a similar way to other popular fitness apps on the market. It tracks your calories burned, heart rate, and steps taken. You activate the watch’s sensors with a quick tap on the start button. Then, the Moto 360 Sport will immediately start to track your running pace, distance traveled, and running time.
Another helpful feature in the software is the ability to check your heart rate’s burn zone – so you can make sure you’re not working out too hard (or too soft).
Fortunately, if you don’t like Motorola’s built-in fitness tracking software, then you can download apps like RunKeeper, Runtastic, or Strava, all of which work perfectly fine with the Sport.
One of the biggest criticisms of this built-in Moto 360 Sport fitness app is that it only assumes you go for runs: there’s no option to change your activity to running, biking, swimming, or whatever other activities you might be doing. You’ll want to download some of the third party apps we just mentioned if you want to change your exercises.
Outside of the fitness apps, the Moto 360 Sport runs Android Wear, which is Google’s popular open source wearable platform for Android devices.
Reviewers don’t have great things to say about the Moto 360 Sport battery life. The second generation Moto 360 reportedly lasts about 2 days on a single charge. Meanwhile, Moto 360 Sport users claim their watches struggle to last longer than a day.
Motorola even admits that the 300mAh battery will last “up to a full day of mixed use”.
The battery life goes down even further when you leave GPS or always-lit screen modes on during exercise.
However, if you do want to save battery life, then you’ll find some battery life saving tools built in. You can adjust the hybrid display so it only turns on when absolutely necessary (so it doesn’t stay bright constantly).
If you need the watch to last through an entire day of normal use, then you may struggle to hit that target. If, however, you just want to wear the watch when you’re exercising before placing it back on the charger, then this shouldn’t be an issue.
The ambient display is one of the key features on the Moto 360 Sport. That ambient display automatically adjusts screen brightness for your surroundings. You use significantly more battery life when the ambient display is on, but it’s helpful if you don’t want to constantly adjust brightness on the fly while you’re running around outside.
The Moto 360 Sport comes with a barometric altimeter, accelerometer, ambient light sensor, gyroscope, and a vibration/haptic feedback engine.
The Moto 360 Sport comes with a built-in optical heart rate sensor. That heart rate sensor has mixed reviews online, with many reviewers claiming that the sensor is wildly inaccurate at higher heart rate ranges.
The Moto 360 Sport advertises the sweat-resistant rubber band as waterproof, but don’t be fooled into thinking that the rest of the watch is waterproof. It can handle sweat and a run in light rain, but it’s not technically certified for swimming, taking it in the shower, or exposing it to a major downpour outside.
Nevertheless, the Moto 360 Sport is rated as IP67 dust and water resistant. That means it’s been certified to survive up to 30 minutes under 1 meter underwater. So you can’t really go swimming with it, but it shouldn’t experience water damage in any other exercise.
One reviewer at The Next Web claims he wouldn’t dare take the Moto 360 Sport swimming or outside in heavy rain. However, a reviewer at Gizmodo claims that he has worn the watch through countless showers, in swimming pools, and “even on a brief trip into a frozen lake” without any issues.
In our experience with IP67 water-resistant devices, they’re pretty much waterproof. But the manufacturer doesn’t want to tell you they’re waterproof because they don’t know for sure that the device will survive all underwater situations.
The Moto 360 Sport uses a Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 processor with a 1.2GHz quad-core CPU along with an Adreno 30 GPU with 450MHz.
There is 4GB of internal storage and 512MB of RAM inside the Moto 360 Sport.
Moto 360 Sport Pricing
The Moto 360 Sport was initially priced at $379.99 at launch but just recently dropped down to a more manageable price of $299.99.
You can purchase the watch from Google’s online store or through Amazon and other major retailers. Not all retailers are currently offering the discounted $299.99 price at the time of writing, so make sure you find one that does (like the official Google website).
Should the Moto 360 Sport Be Your Next Smartwatch?
The Moto 360 Sport is a decent smart watch at this price range. It comes with a built-in GPS and an optical heart rate sensor. It’s also distinguished by unique features like the ambient display, which automatically adjusts your screen brightness depending on your ambient surroundings.
The watch is, however, held back by certain limitations. The battery life doesn’t last longer than a day, for example, and the built-in fitness tracking software only tracks running (you can install other fitness tracking apps, fortunately).
If you’re a runner looking for a watch that’s nearly waterproof and comes with a built-in GPS to track your activity without needing to connect to a phone, then the Moto 360 Sport may be your next favorite smartwatch.