Google buys Fossil wearables tech
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  1. #1
    Member TheJohnP's Avatar
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    Google buys Fossil wearables tech

    Interesting development today with Google buying Fossil tech and staffing

    https://www.theverge.com/platform/am...ear-os-android
    I've got more Converse sneakers than watches, but it is a close race.

  2. #2
    Member kramer5150's Avatar
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    Re: Google buys Fossil wearables tech

    interesting... Fossil for $40M... thats peanuts for them. They make $40M in a week!! (I'm exaggerating of course... a little)

    Hopefully with Google backing things a bit, there will be more SD3100 based designs.

  3. #3
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    Re: Google buys Fossil wearables tech

    The problem with SD3100 is... it's barely a new chip. Quallcom repackaged the 2100 into the 3100 name, but it's almost the same processor from the same production lines and design. Still 28nm, whereas all mobile and even desktop processors have moved well beyond that. So even at launch, the sd3100 is years outdated compared to what apple and samsung make for their watches.
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  5. #4
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    Re: Google buys Fossil wearables tech

    Yep... the 3100 is really nothing special. Add to it that the newest WearOS is better optimized to run on older chips. My moto 360 from early 2015 still runs OK even with its ancient SD400. Sure its slower searching through google playstore, and sending text messages... but other than that, it still keeps up with my newer fossil gen 4 explorist for day to day operation. I for one don't see the 3100 as a reason not to get a SD 2100 based design. Dont believe the marketing hype... they are the same chip.

    The biggest problem with WearOS and the SD21/3100 is battery life. 1.5~2 days tops between charges just doesn't cut it. Even if you turn off almost everything (always on display, GPS, NFC, 4G, MP3 music, wifi, tilt to wake, max screen bright), you're lucky to get 2 days just using it as a step counting bluetooth notifier with an always blank screen. Of course YMMV depending on how many calls and txt messages you get and how often you tap the screen to wake it up.

    The other big problem are the OS updates from Google. You just don't know when they are coming. I haven't worn my Fossil Gen 4 explorist since Friday afternoon. Everything worked great on Fri evening when set it down on the charging plate. I go pick it up off my night stand this morning (tuesday) and I am greeted with a non-functioning watch... as it downloads a major OS update. It burned up 10% of the battery in ~5 minutes, so I had to place it back down on the charging plate. Took about 30 minutes out of my morning as I waited for it to download, install and reboot my watch. Luckily I had wifi turned on. I can't imagine how long it would take over bluetooth from my cell phone. I have owned the watch almost exactly 1 month since 12/23. One major update a month is way too much / many. Wear OS is not off to a good start in this regard. This mirrors my experience on the old Android Wear OS, about 1 update every month or two.

    Generally with cellular tech products every OS update is one further step towards obsolescence. This is where traditional horology, and even quartz / digital watches completely obliterate smart watches IMHO. A watch should work when you pick it up off the nightstand.

    For these reasons I am kind of hesitant openly recommend WearOS devices.... at least not without some reservations.

    IMHO the proprietary OS and closed ecosystem smartwatches that are the ones worth looking at. If you dial back the samsung galaxy and apple watches a little bit they'll go for ~3-3.5 days between charges. The Huawei watch GT (with its new Huawei OS) also gets very good battery life under similar usage settings. My amazfit Stratos is still too new for me to have any opinions on it. From what I can tell though these closed ecosystem OS products are better than WearOS... or at least don't seem to have the kinds of fundamental flaws I have experienced with Wear OS and the older Android Wear.
    Last edited by kramer5150; January 23rd, 2019 at 15:35.
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  6. #5
    Member X2-Elijah's Avatar
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    Re: Google buys Fossil wearables tech

    For security reasons, one update a month should be normal... but it is madness to not allow the owner of the watch to control when the update is actually downloaded and applied...

    Currently on my (brand spanking new) samsung galaxy watch, with always on display & HR/step/elevation tracking/nfc/wifi/BT (disabled gps, and no musicstreaming though), so far today it's been worn for 7 hours (with some casual use of apps & configs) and battery has gone from 100% to 88%. So approx. 12% per 6 hours with always-on display that has a moving seconds hand (at 3bps) and normal analog watchface + day/date/powerreserve/stepcount at all times...

    That seems to be way better than what any WearOS watch can offer.
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  7. #6
    Member X2-Elijah's Avatar
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    Re: Google buys Fossil wearables tech

    One thing that I am thinking about, however, is... How fast/slow will the batteries in these things degrade?
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  8. #7
    Member kramer5150's Avatar
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    Re: Google buys Fossil wearables tech

    That sounds about right. Not sure about the galaxy but on my fossil explorist I also turn off wifi, NFC and the tilt to wake feature gyroscope. These also help extend battery. I go from 6:30AM to 10:30 PM and have about 55-65% charge remaining after 5~10 txt/call notifications during the day. The tilt to wake arm-raise gyroscope was a real surprise. That one feature was depleting me down to ~20% by 10:30 PM... just barely enough to get through a full day+ evening. So I turn that off. I could probably get 2 days out of it, barely. I don't make it a habit completely killing the battery though.

    So even with everything turned off except BT txt/call notifications and step counting, there's something within WearOS and the SD400/2100/3100 chip chugging through battery. Even with the latest WearOS updates it still eats through battery at 2~3 times what the other OS do. It may have to do with Google play services, play store and cohesion with the whole ecosystem.

    I'm really impressed with the amazfit stratos. Took it off the charger yesterday at 6:30AM used it as a bluetooth notifier where I got about 10-15 notifications. I also took some heart rate measurements during my mid day walk. So I did not use the GPS, NFC, wifi. The tilt to wake function/gyroscope is not needed since it has always ON display. I also played around with it quite a bit during the day, uploading and syncing data with my phone, changing watch faces...etc. I wore it overnight for the sleep tracking feature. That's something I could probably never do with WearOS. Its now 8:00 AM next day and its at 75%. Theres probably some further optimizations I can do with it... tweeking notification settings for example. I like it so much I am thinking about getting the amazfit BIP. People are reporting 45 days(!!) between charges.

    Battery capacity will decrease with age and charge cycles. No way around that. My moto 360 has really surprised me though. I still get 1 day of use out of its OEM battery but not much more than that. I bought it in early 2015.
    Last edited by kramer5150; January 23rd, 2019 at 17:02.

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    Re: Google buys Fossil wearables tech

    usualy what eats batter is hot start of GPS. Usualy is better if GPS chip has some other power saving algorithems. Have you tryed root acces to watch? For sure there are some parts which can be removed.

  10. #9
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    Re: Google buys Fossil wearables tech

    Quote Originally Posted by mona666 View Post
    usualy what eats batter is hot start of GPS. Usualy is better if GPS chip has some other power saving algorithems. Have you tryed root acces to watch? For sure there are some parts which can be removed.
    Why should that even be necessary? Is it normal for users to pretend to be hackers? I thought we left behind the “computers are only for experts” idea forty years ago.

  11. #10
    Member kramer5150's Avatar
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    Re: Google buys Fossil wearables tech

    Quote Originally Posted by mona666 View Post
    usualy what eats batter is hot start of GPS. Usualy is better if GPS chip has some other power saving algorithems. Have you tryed root acces to watch? For sure there are some parts which can be removed.
    I don't think you can root google WearOS devices. Its not the same as the full Android OS based watches.

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