LG Watch W7 SmartWatch Powered by Google WearOS #Ad

Hubby is a “Watch Guy”. We all know them, some of us love them. They like and collect watches. Sometimes to an unhealthy degree. And I’ll be honest, while I’ve picked up some of the nomenclature and in’s and out’s of watches, I’ll never be a “Watch Gal”. So I’ll abdicate the bulk of this review to him, because he’ll be able to touch on things that I might miss. So, since we’re a team, here we go…

A watch is an important tool. Anyone with an affinity for them has heard the two stand-by gags of “I have a phone that tells time” and the ever hilarious “A $8 Timex would be the same”, especially if you can appreciate and own a fine Swiss timepiece. But today we’re going abruptly change gears and talk about neither an low-end digital quartz watch or an expensive automatic 23-jewel Swiss investment. This unit falls somewhere in the grey area between those worlds, neither fully digital, and certainly not fully mechanical, despite sporting a Swiss-made gearbox for the analog hands. The LG Watch W7, a Smartwatch powered by Google’s Wear OS, seeks to bridge the gap between a techie with bleeding edge gear and those of us with one foot firmly in a simpler time who still need to wind our watches. The LG W7 can help keep you on-task (with proactive help from the Google Assistant), and keep you a touch healthier with smarter health coaching from Google Fit. And look good doing it.
With that established, I’ve resisted the Smartwatch craze because I have a plethora of watches of all makes and models and, to turn the gag back on the techies, I had a phone and didn’t need another on my wrist. I can now safely say, I definitely see the appeal of something like the LG W7 because it’s pretty handy to not have to dig your phone out with every buzz and beep. And, to put a finer point on it, today’s phones with 6″ screens (and larger!) can not be checked too discretely anymore, whereas a watch can be as under the radar as it gets. I deliberately stayed away from the instruction manual to see if the watch controls were intuitive, and the are. I had the majority of features figured out in a matter of minutes. It’s on the larger side for a watch, but not quite like, say, a massive Invicta or the larger 50mm Casio G-Shock watches. It’s certainly not heavy, but it’s not light either, it feels significant on the wrist and you’ll not forget it’s there. With the right watch face (because they’re infinitely swappable!!) it can look sporty, dressy, or can mimic a classic chronograph with ease. The 1.2″ edge-to-edge screen sports 360X360 resolution (is easy to read at any angle, and the traditional analog hands are a bright silver that can tell the time at a glance without the need for the screens bright backlight. The pull-out crown serves as the main control button, but the capacitive touchscreen makes analog buttons almost an afterthought beyond initial setup and programming. Battery life for the 240 mAh lithium-polymer battery could be better, but unless you’re quite the social butterfly, with the right settings it’ll easily last you all day before needing a charge. A few hours tops it off and you’re set to seize the next day again. In fact, you could select the “Watch Only” mode and LG claims you can get 100 days wear out of this watch. Nice. The 44.5 mm (?) case is right in the sweet spot for a men’s watch, neither too small or too large before needing a recharge. Nice. The fixed matte-black bezel means the gloss silver indices are easily read as well. The 22mm rubber strap is soft and pliable, and a joy to wear. In fact, it has a feature that I would appreciate on some of my nicer Seikos, a simple nub for the push bar that negates the need for a lug tool to change your strap. Anyone who’d ever had to fumble with one of those tools knows it can be a real pain sometimes. The brushed stainless steel case means this watch looks as nice as any I own. It’s fully compatible with both Android and Apple OS’s, so no matter your preferred smartphone, LG has you covered. It has all the features of a full-fledged digital ABC (Altimeter, Barometer, Compass), plus a stopwatch and timer like the finest chronometer. I have yet to master the touch-free gesture controls, but I do appreciate their necessity for some folks and like that the option is there. Full product specs can be found here and here.
It’s not all wine and roses. I have hit wrong keys on the unit a couple of times, hitting the wrong key. I have given up ever using it for all but the briefest of 1- or 2-word replies for a text. The keyboard is just too small for me to use. Being that it’s a touchscreen, I have to go against everything I’ve ever held true about my watches, as touching the crystal all the time is antithesis to what I’ve known. I’m fully aware that some people have made quite a bit of fuss over the analog hands blocking important notifications. While I can appreciate that some would want a clear, uncluttered face, I myself found no issues reading the notifications behind the hands. I would very much like to have had GPS and heartrate monitor functionality, and I’m unsure if it can be added later via an OTA firmware update, but I’m happy with the features included thus far and unless those are “deal-breaker” features for you you’ll not miss them, in my opinion. I wish the water resistance was a little better, because I do tend to treat my watches like tools and water…water sometimes happens. It’ll be fine with a light splash or a little dust, but don’t dunk it in the pool or wear it in the desert or heavy rain. NFC and fitness tracking would be nice as well, but since I don’t use either I’m not feeling the pain of their absence, but I could certainly understand folks being a little peeved at these fairly common features being excluded.
In the end, I have very little about this watch I don’t like, despite my initial resistance to this hybrid device. I like that it doesn’t scream “TECH!!” on my wrist, and could easily pass for a normal fine timepiece at a glance, but still sports most the high-tech features people have come to expect from a smartwatch. I like that it can be easily customized to fit any occasion or style of dress with a few touches or swipes. It feels substantial without being obnoxious. I would recommend it for a watch person who’s looking to dip their toes in this particular pool, and stay ahead of the curve. It’s got enough bells and whistles to satisfy just about anyone. Grab one right here: http://bby.me/8yqyj , if you’re so inclined.
The reviewer has been compensated in the form of a Best Buy Gift Card and/or received the product.

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