Tag Heuer Connected Smartwatch and Android Wear 2 review
The best, flashiest smartwatch gets an update
- Famous brand
- Customisable faces
- Under featured
- Modest battery
- Very expensive
Considering it's the only watch marque to make a smartwatch, by default, it's the classiest smartwatch you can buy, despite the practicalities.
Price$ 2,000.00 (AUD)
We've struggled to find a killer feature for Android Wear smartwatches. They provide notifications which stop some people having to look at their phone and most have (variable-quality) heart-rate sensors for fitness tracking apps. Some aren't even waterproof.
Compared to the likes of the Apple Watch, with its proper waterproofing plus myriad fitness and navigation features, they've not really seemed very... well... smart. Some have been attractive-looking like the Huawei Watches the best non-Apple variant we've seen has been Garmin's Fenix Cronos which did everything and had a battery that lasted a full week.
So we've been very interested to get our hands on Tag Heuer's Connected smartwatch to see what the marque could bring to the table. While this is version one (and gen. 2 is already upon us) it has just been updated to Android Wear 2. So the questions now are, is the Connected still worth buying and has Android Wear 2 made Android Wear more attractive?
Tag Heuer Connected Design
Our first impressions are mixed. On the one hand who are we to judge a product from a company that brought us the likes of the Steve McQueen Monaco watch from Le Mans? On the other hand the rubber bracelet and large, chunky body split the field: some thought it was bulky and ugly while others fell in love with it. It's a personal thing.
Despite the simplified Tag logos on the crown and on top of the face, few people will recognise it as a Tag and that's usually the point of watches – they're the only universally-acceptable jewellery men can wear. But it will likely still attract interested glances from aficionados who care about such things.
The new Android Wear 2 software coincides with an updated to the Tag’s Connected App. This focuses on customizing the key elements of the face to an intricate degree. You can change the style of the ‘metal’ number markers, the colour of their highlights and the colour of the face.
On top of that you can add a “GMT-style” third hand to tell the time from another timezone or extra 'Chronograph' dials. On top of that are the usual date and battery functions. Ultimately, there’s much more choice and the options are more refined. It ties into the newer Connected 2 watch which is all about being modular – physically as well as for software.
Android Wear 2 feels much more polished than the original, with swiping much smoother and quicker and the layout more intuitive. The main feature addition is the excellent Google Assistant – just hold the main button and talk into it like a 60’s secret agent. We found it works better when it’s quieter though. Another potentially-useful app is Google Translate which offers very accurate voice recognition for a great many languages.
You can now access the smartwatch area of the Google Play store direct from your phone too. We still haven’t found a killer app for it though. Google Fit works but relies on your phone for GPS info as there’s not one built in.Read more: Garmin Fenix Chronos fitness tracker smartwatch review
Swiping down gives access to Aeroplane Mode and Brightness features. You can also turn on Do Not Disturb and easily turn the watch face off which is useful at night.
Potentially-big missing features of the Connected include a heart-rate monitor and GPS. While these can be generally terrible and inaccurate on smartwatches, they do tend to be a useful addition considering that fitness is a key feature of the devices. They are battery-vampires though.
And that’s an issue with the Connected. Despite its size and limited features it really does only comfortably last for a day – at least the charging cradle is simple to use. WiFi is built in but we recommend turning it off to save juice.Read more: Garmin Fenix 5 fitness tracker smartwatch review
Taking the watch off is simple, thanks to the clever clasp on the solid, rubber strap.. However, the bulky metal’s sharp corners do sometimes dig into your wrist.
We were impressed with the IP67 waterproof rating, however. Many smartwatches offer poor waterproofing but this will manage 30-minutes at a one-metre depth.
Watches often represent jewellery for men these days and price is frequently determined by brand. A Huawei smartwatch does more than the Connected and five times less. But it’s a Huawei. Garmin’s Fenix Cronos is very practical and useful and costs the same. But it’s from Garmin. Apple’s Watch (especially the expensive ceramic – aka White – variant) can’t hold a candle to Tag and Rolex in terms of watch cachet. Will people notice this is a Tag? Our experience says no, but they do notice it and are then usually impressed to learn it’s a Tag.
Of course, paying $2,000 for a piece of not-very-useful technology can sting a bit, especially if it becomes obsolete quickly. Good news here is that the newer Tag Heuer Connected Modular 45 doesn’t make this obsolete by any stretch – it just offers different (sometimes flamboyant) physical appearances with some updated innards (for potentially a great deal more money), but the software and functions remain the same. However, if it does start to feel old – and that’s inevitable at some point – Tag has catered for this and offers all buyers the ability to trade it in for a special Tag Heuer Carerra (mechanical) watch (along with US$1,500).
Of course many people will be balking at such prices, but if that’s the case, don’t be looking at brands like Tag. If your smartwatch requirements primarily involve telling the time and giving you some notifications without having to take your phone out of your pocket, look elsewhere. Whatever your thoughts on the matter, the Tag Heuer Connected is still, far and away, the flashiest/classiest smartwatch you can buy.
Join the newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Huawei Mate 10 Pro Review: A solid winter flagship that cribs from the best
- 2 Google Pixel 2 review: not quite 'pixel perfect' but damn close
- 3 Huawei Nova 2i review: Flagship features get smuggled into the mid-tier
- 4 Moto X4 review: This is what a world without MotoMods looks like
- 5 Giabyte Aorus X9 Gaming Laptop review: Full, in-depth review
Latest News Articles
- Apple Watch Series 3 reviews: The good, the bad, and the ugly
- Apple Watch Series 3: Five reasons why it's a must-upgrade
- iPhone X, Apple Watch Series 3 and Apple TV 4K: Everything Announced At Today’s Apple Keynote
- Everything Samsung Just Announced At IFA 2017
- Fitbit give their Ionic smartwatch an IFA reveal
PCW Evaluation Team
Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.
The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.
The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.
The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic
I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.
It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.
- Huawei Mate 10 Pro review
- Dell Inspiron 5675 Gaming Desktop review
- Hands On: Our first impressions of Sony's a7R III
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
Product Launch Showcase
- TPBusiness Continuity Senior Associate/ IT AuditNSW
- FTProject ManagerOther
- CCSalesforce Solutions ArchitectNSW
- FTDigital BA / Product Owner / 3 Month ContractOther
- FTJava Software Engineers wanted (Melbourne CBD location)VIC
- CCProgram ManagerNSW
- FTSenior Project Controls Officer / CoordinatorOther
- CCLevel 1 and 2 Help Desk OfficerQLD
- TPSenior Project ManagerNSW
- CCMobile Applications DevelopersACT
- FTManager, PortfolioOther
- FTMarketing Operations ManagerNSW
- FTSecurity Analyst - Operational SupportOther
- FT.NET DeveloperNSW
- FTICT Cloud Transformation Program Coordinator - SAPOther
- CCPega LSA - Banking IndustryVIC
- FTTechnical/ Architecture Java LeadVIC
- TPPHP DeveloperVIC
- TPProject Manager - Records ManagementVIC
- CCCitrix Solution Designer? NetScaler | XenAppQLD
- CCVMware EngineerNSW
- TPPrincipal PO|PI DeveloperQLD
- TPSenior Project ManagerNSW
- FTSenior Project Manager, Facilities & Asset ManagementOther
- FTDigital Marketing ExecutiveOther