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Is it finally time to get a smartwatch? (CNET's Open_Tab)With Apple's Watch OS 3 and Pebble Time 2 coming later this year, should you even consider getting a smartwatch this summer? CNET's Scott Stein explains the state of the wearable with Jeff Bakalar and Joseph Kaminski in this excerpt from Open_Tab.
[MUSIC] Alright, let's talk about wearables, because like I said, that's all you do here. Because that's it, and then you can eliminate me, I'm done.>> We'll cut to break.>> The hourglass is running out. So tell me what Yeah. Is popular with wearables in your life. Like what are you doing that has you like turning to wearables and saying these are a thing I need. Yeah, well they're definitely not popular in my family. If I stopped using them I would It would be welcomed. Sure this is gone. That's one more thing I'm coddling in my life. So you're saying you like that. Yeah exactly fantastic. I think there is definitely a time to wait on getting anything unless you want to spend like $100. But what I use them for I kept saying first time I used a pebble it's basically like a pager on your wrist. And I don't think it's changed much since then. The best thing a wearable does. Is buzz you and give you a reminder which sometimes can be really helpful if you're thinking you might miss a call or there's something, you don't want to pick up your phone. There's also obviously the fitness tracking part which if you stick to a routine. The problem is it's a carrot on a stick. It's got to go with a regular gym regimen, nutrition. Right, and I'm glad you brought up the fitness thing because I think this there's a lot of stuff going on I don't want to say what I want to say, but what I am going to say Sure is like hey maybe all this fitness crave stuff is not something anyone should really completely, you know, rely on for getting healthy yes because, well no doctor thinks of these as an answer right So not medically approved He looks up to Charlie, he's like, look Larry The reason you're 100 pounds overweight is because you don't have a FitBit. Gotta get yourself a FitBit. Right. It comes down to, like, when I've been able to lose weight or if I gain weight again, and I've used a ton of these things. First, I've got to stick to one because if I'm switching from one to the other, that's not going to work. Yeah. And yeah, it's a motivator. It's like, if that works, you've got some other system that works but these all cap out generally at the step tracking and they do some things like running or some heart rate stuff but the deeper you get, the more active you you try to get the more fitness trackers tend to fail you Sure So if you're just trying to see, was I alive and walking Uh-huh This makes me sound sort of dismissive but it's true. Right. That's great. Really, like if you're going to go to the gym three or four times a week, and you know that- Sure. A watch isn't going to do it for you. And you know what you're doing. The tracker is just like extra motivation. So use it for that, use it for those. I use it for things like checking the weather, which actually things. Dark sky is actually a great app. Lets you know like when the weather, when it's gonna rain within like five minutes so you seem like Doc Brown and. Cool. Yeah so that, that I love that app. Yeah. It's like micro weather reports. And I want everyone watching on YouTube, Facebook where ever you're coming from. Comment on what you're seeing right here. We're gonna answer as any questions as we can, or take your comments, or do what we need to do to help you out to ensure that you have a successful July 4th weekend. And if you're not in the country and you're celebrating something else, you can have a good weekend also. So make sure you interact with us and we'll get to some of those as they come in. Scott I want to pivot to specifically The Apple watch, The Pebble, Yeah. The smart watches. Sure. Is right now a time to own a smart watch? No. Ok moving along. [LAUGHTER], We're done. Basically, If you can spend as little as possible right now. The reason I say that is because We're expecting all these things to get updates in the fall. Like pretty much I mean you'd think Apple Watch should, Android Wear is gonna have a- New Pebble coming out. Yeah, a new Pebble's coming out. We already know about that. Expect all the other watchmakers probably are gonna follow suit, so you want to kick yourself for spending several hundred dollars on something that's gonna get updated. Now summer is a good time to wear one. Cuz you were probably out and about but just not a great time to buy one. Unless, again, Pebble actually makes a couple of very affordable ones. That's probably a pretty good way to go. [UNKNOWN] we're not spending a lot of money, or something's on sale, like $100. Where we feel comfortable, it's like buying a pair of shoes and you're okay with getting a new pair of shoes later. But just, its like I don't want to tell you, don't come into the elevator and tell there is a new version out, that's the problem. And I think they all need improvement, so there's no perfect smart watch right now. What were you going to say Jeff? I think one that he mentioned that I am looking forward to is the Microsoft Band three. I just learned that there is something that's called the Microsoft Band Three. Tell me about it Well the two is current right now. Right, that's what you're wearing Some people may not be aware of Microsoft Band One and Two at this point I mean, in the smart band sense I like a regular watch on my left hand Of course And i like something that doesn't look like a watch on my right hand. Okay now you're [UNKNOWN] the train here because I don't wanna look like I'm wearing two watches [CROSSTALK] Honestly, if this wasn't so glossy it would look like a- You look like some time traveller. Who needs to- It would look like the Livestrong, Armstrong band from- No. No. [CROSSTALK] You're not fooling anyone. I love this because it has GPS and I ride a bicycle and a lot of them Don't have GPS like some of Garmin ones. Garmin ones and increasingly some of the (unintelligible) I started out with a Nike Fuel Band, loved it, was great for steps, it was great for the community. It was great for steps. It was great for steps in the community because it gave you little motivational flags. It would give you "Yay" you know, "Fortnight" etc. Right, right, right. But it was horrible if I rode my bicycle because. I would ride my bicycle maybe ten miles. And somebody would run two miles, and they'd kick my **** in the so called [INAUDIBLE] fuel measurement system. Yeah. I like this because it actually logs my distance, because it has GPS. Okay. I like that it also has UV. I can [UNKNOWN]. UV. Do you use the AVC channel? I will this weekend [LAUGH] I mean, lets be honest, it's got it under your wrist? You can wear it the other way around. Hold on, let me see if it's slowing you down. So, the Microsoft band, I think you are kinda meant to wear it flipped around. With the screen underneath. So you're wearing it wrong? No, cuz I'd rather scratch this cuz I'm typing all the time. [INAUDIBLE] [CROSSTALK] Otherwise you're like that and you're bending your arm. Another benefit to having it underneath though is you can have your text alerts and when Scott can come on the top. And everybody, my son is always like I got you! You can use your nose to watch the screen But I would like to see in terms of features it's great. I would like to see a better battery life, Yeah. and maybe a little bit more refined design, but I'm content with all the features it has Alright, you're welcome Microsoft, that the longest fun you've ever had without the band [LAUGH] Because they just added. They could have run out of ideas which is just untrue. They also added sports community. There's a sleep tracker. So now like Nick Heely is the only other friend with a Microsoft 2 band. So I can see how well Nick did. And then people in my age group. Join Joe and Nick in the community. You guys holding another meeting? Another thing, you can get competitive. [CROSSTALK] Nick's not doing more steps in Australia than I can do in New York. Well, its gravity is different there. This is a big change. Social is if you're going to get those fitness bands and stuff, one of the main points is you do it to compete with people. Yeah, they had to gamify it. Yeah, gamify it. I mean finally Apple watch is getting on board with that. But Fitbit, that's the main appeal of Fitbit, I think, is that you say- Or you have a friend that does it. Right. If you have ten friends that are all using jawbones. Right. Exactly. Like you said, you got the club. Then join that club. You got your jawbone club. Hopefully it is a platform that a lot of other people are using. Do you feel stupid when you say that? Jawbone club? [LAUGH] Join that jawbone club. People spend all sort of money on all sorts of other things like diet plans and things. Everybody will buy a gadget just to Do those things back in the what, 70s, or whatever that period of time was we didn't have more advanced pedometers. But what I'm just saying is yeah. All right, well listen, let's hear what the Internet has to say about this fine stuff. I believe we have a couple questions from the Internet. Yes guys, so Elliot on YouTube just had a comment. He said that he likes the Moto360 for its spaces. Dominic on Facebook loves the Pebble for its long battery charge. RJ says he's tried several of the smartwatches out there, but he likes just an old fashioned watch, for the basics. And, Jorge had a question. He wanted to know If you think the GPS could come to a future version of an apple watch or if there's any speculation that you guys have heard about an apple watch two in the future. Yeah, what do you think about the GPS on an apple watch? Well the biggest problem with the GPS. It's the iPhone [LAUGH] Yeah, right. Just strap that around your wrist. The biggest with the GPS is the battery life. Because you're going to get, like, six hours max Some of them, GPS use before most of these devices die. And so the battery life is already pretty low on the Apple Watch, you're like a day and a half. And do you want to cut that down further. That's the only problem. And then you have to also have to make it a little bit bigger, probably. Because a lot of these things have to find a way to get that mechanism. Get that tech [INAUDIBLE]. Right. Like, man, they just need to make the Apple Watch automatic? That's what I think, is just focus on making it more automatic and more seamless. So when I say automatic, I mean like powered by the motion of your wrist. I see what you're saying. Yeah exactly. Like I get it. There's an insane amount of energy you're producing but like Yeah, watches kind of need to have that. That's why the automatic watches of the world are amazing and just, kind of, laugh in the face of all these smartwatches. It's charging is the most annoying thing. It's amazing to me how many people seem okay with charging their device. The problem is this. If we had some sort of universal charging There is. There's Qi. I mean, a universal charging mat or stand. Right. But what happens is that all of these wearable don't use it or they it in some way have to use a special little and passwords. You can't shock them on the cable. [COUGH] We were promised the math. Yes. But you can't charge customer in your charging table. if you're gonna just take off all your stuff, your shoes, your hat, your smart glasses, your smart pants wear you put those on the charge table. Sure, that's great That'd be nice But I'm not gonna hunt around for these dongles and carry them and it gets frustrating. Pebble I do like cuz of the battery life. yeah like That's the thing, solid week Full disclosure, full transparency I pre-ordered a Pebble Time Two on Kickstarter. I backed it I always wanted a Pebble but I convinced myself to wait and I feel like I'm finally gonna be rewarded for my patience. This Pebble times two I think, looks like, you know I like the size of that screen. They really doubled up on that They did Yeah And I think they've been making, a lot of these watches have been making gains if you do care about fitness tracking. Right The basic fitness tracking has all been getting better on those watches Okay Android Wear's been getting better over time. Pebble has been doing automatic steps in sleep tracking so kind of almost does the same thing that you get out of a FitBit minus again the community. But some basic features are already in there so you might find yourself Pretty happy with a lot of what it offers, just don't expect again like the idea of apps on a watch, if you even want that. That stuff's not there, some things like, you know payments is not going to show up, but again how often do I use this for payments. I've always got my wallet, and it's not showing up on every terminal. Now, what do you think the next big step. Smart watches have to achieve for them to hit this sort of like critical mass. I had dinner in San Francisco when I was out there last time. I was sitting next to this couple and Classic average you know person, they were in techs were different. Right. But I thought their comment was going to be something about like battery life and basically they just said, yeah, you know you tally up I'll buy one of those when it doesn't cost $700- It's price. >. And yeah, price like I can use it away from my phone. Yeah. You have to sever that connection. Yeah, so I actually think those two things, I actually hit those things. Price And you know, the more people realize how much you need your phone around. These things do a little bit without your phone but not enough and that really breaks the magic super watch thought. "What? What am I using this for?" Yeah. So I think you can do more with that 3G connection. Some of these watches already have cellular. So I think you can do Samsung Gear S2, 3G-->> Again you're talking another radio, another power suck.>> All these things cut down. When I wore the Samsung for like nine hours, the battery. LG has one that is 3G Android Wear. But you have to pay for the extra data, they're bigger. They don't really make much sense. A lot of the apps don't really feel hooked into it. So it's kind of interesting idea but it's not really an interesting idea. But at some point you do want it to work, just work. And I know that sounds dumb and obvious but that's it. You don't wanna spend a lot of time on your watch, everybody's onto that. We're just not there yet. No. We're just not there yet. And watch faces. I think, finally, somebody said that's a great point about watch faces. About the 360, yeah. Just make All of these things should be here, cool watch faces. And let me do it on the computer. Like let me Yeah Give me a great set of tools, pebble, motor, whatever it is, even apple, do it apple. Let me build it Let me build it and do what I want. And, add as many, if I want that screen. Complications filled with like 20. All the state capitals. Little tiny bits of info. I don't know why. [LAUGH] Right it's like looking at it with a microscope, like a jewelers look So what? I want that. Yeah I agree. There's a question from YouTube. Are smartwatch batteries getting bigger? Like, physically, or? They weren't specific. I guess they have to get bigger if they're going to get, take up more real estate, you mean. They may have to or, I think you're going to have a hard time making even more efficient Process, you're up against a bit of a wall. Right. They might have to get a little bit bigger. Yeah. Or come up with some- I actually think a way to go would be maybe some sort of battery wrist band? Yeah, maybe. Or That makes sense. I wanna see that. Apple's put batteries in everything. Put it in the wristband. Well Pebble did that whole Smartband thing. Yeah. Which never really turned into anything, And so why don't you have Smartstrap accessories? Right. Alright. Good thought. [MUSIC]