Mobvoi, the maker Ticwatch, was gracious enough to provide me with a review unit of the their Ticwatch S model Android Wear watch. While I must admit that I’m still not fully convinced that smartwatches are a true necessity, my experience with them has been a pretty positive thus far. My biggest objection to date is that smartwatches are a disposable item because of the unknown software support and battery longevity. Sure you can probably replace the battery on some devices, however that is probably a hassle, possibly cost prohibitive and also problematic. I say this because it might not be worth investing in a battery change-out based on limited future software support and or software exceeding the hardware limitations. For these reasons my personal recommendation is to not invest a lot of greenbacks in a smartwatch at this time. Anyway, enough of my take on smartwatches and time to talk about the Ticwatch S.
Unboxing the Ticwatch S was mildly interesting as it came in a small metal box reminiscent of a cookie tin with a very artistic design. Well packaged and as with many electronics I find it purely mind boggling how they get these things into the box so neatly tucked in. They won’t be getting it back as neatly I received it, that’s for sure.
The Ticwatch S model has a 1.4 inch or 45 mm bright OLED round display and I must say that the OLED screen looks great. It is 13 mm thick and weighs 45.5 grams. My personal preference is round instead of the square watches like the square look of Apple or Asus Zenwatch 2. The bezel has bright green numbers but it is immovable despite it mimicking old Skin Diver style watches. Be warned it may not fit in with some of your watch face selections but I hardly noticed. As with any android wear watch there are lots of watch faces to choose from. My favorite app is Watchmaker Premium with lots of watch faces included and additional watch faces available at additional cost.
The watchband feels very nice and appears to be made out of TPU and blends nicely with the watch. I received the Knight version which black, it is also available in Glacier, which is white and Aurora, which is a greenish yellow.
My first smartwatch experience was last year and what I learned is that it is certainly convenient and I miss less notifications than I do with just a phone. With a smartwatch you rarely miss a notification and in the case of the Ticwatch S nothing changes. I did get notifications even separated from the phone around the house or office but I didn’t get a chance to test it for how far I could get from my phone for the signal to diminish. If distance from your phone is critical you’ll have to look elsewhere for a watch that has LTE support.
I hear lots of people complain about the battery on this and other watches. Unfortunately smartwatches just don’t have the capacity that we all crave. I found it adequate but it will not last more than a day and a half. The biggest drain is the first few days especially If you are new to smartwatches because you will be constantly playing with it and changing watch faces. Once you get settled in battery life should improve. I found that turning off the ambient display adds several hours to the battery life. I found the magnetic charging cable very easy to connect but it also disconnected easily if bumped. The hardest part is remembering to put it put it on charge. Very fast charging by the way. I never timed it but I was thoroughly impressed.
I'm not much for tracking my steps or my heartbeat but I found this watch more than capable as a fitness tracker. It had no trouble picking up my heartbeat and can now prove I’m alive for those in doubt. The steps seemed fairly accurate as far as I could tell and I suppose I would get more use if it wasn’t for my bad knee as result of hitting a deer on a motorcycle. I should rephrase to clarify I was the one on the motorcycle. Further testing would be required, however since it’s a review unit I won’t be able to put it through the paces. I should mention that the watch is rated at IP67 so you should be good if you get caught in the rain or a dust storm during your workout or mange to spill something on it.
My Final Thoughts:
While it’s not as well known as some of the other manufacturers, Mobvoi isn't some fly by night company making a cheap knock off product and a lot of thought went into the design. My main complaint is that the watch band isn't replaceable. The only reason the band is not removable on the S is due to the GPS band being built into it. If changing bands is your thing, you can save money just getting the E which is also slimmer and still have interchangeable bands.The watch seems a bit large but it was fine despite my small wrists and I got a lot of compliments. The E model is slimmer as I previously stated has less of a sport-watch look but isn’t very dressy either. Why some people wanted to know if it was an Apple watch baffles me and reminds of people who used to ask if my Japanese cruiser motorcycle was a Harley. An issue for some of you techies, but not a deal breaker for me is neither model supports NFC. I’m still getting use to whipping out my phone to pay for some things.
The most amazing thing about the Ticwatch is affordability. You can find the S model currently for 199.99 on the Mobvoi site or Amazon and 159.99 for the E model which is the smaller thinner version. Occasionally they do run deals on their site or Amazon, so you bargain hunters should keep an eye out if one of these watches tick (pun intended) all the boxes on your list. For more information with complete specifications click on the link to Mobvoi
I hope you enjoyed my review as much as I enjoyed writing it. All I can say is thank heavens for spell checkers.