Unobtrusive, small and light the unit comes with a clip to attach it to your clothes or rucksack straps. There’s a wrist strap too, but at 11mm it's just a little too thick to masquerade successfully as a wristwatch.
Wearable as a watch, but rather chunky
The LiveView is controlled using two physical buttons set into the upper corners of the device and four touch sensitive areas built into the top, bottom and sides of the screen bezel. The screen itself is not touch sensitive.
The fascia touch buttons take care of basic up/down/next/previous navigation while the upper-controls switch the device on and off and work as a function selector with a long-press of the latter always taking you to the music menu. The 1.3in OLED screen, while on the small side, is crisp and clear – reading text was no strain on my eyes. All in all, LiveView proved to be pretty useful and easy to operate when connected.
But that is a big 'when' because there is one major problem. Far too often – every third of fourth time I used it in fact – the connection between LiveView and the phone would drop and getting it back proved a frustratingly random and long-winded undertaking.
Nice idea, when it works
In fact, I never did manage to work out why the connection was dropping – one moment all was fine, the next, titsup. Sometimes reconnection was possible from LiveView, at others I needed to dig my phone out and access the LiveView app, which rather defeats the whole point of the exercise.
Next page: Denial of service
Got this for Xmas
.... after telling my wife about it.
The random connection problems are an issue but it has many major flaws:
#1: whilst it is great that it has a find my phone feature, over xmas, I was hoping for a "find my LiveView" feature as the unit pops off the wristband far too easily. And no, you can't glue it on, as it needs to pop off the wristband in order for the charging usb port to be accessible. Thus, since you charge it rather often (more on that in #2), the unit needs to be removed and put in place, which means it becomes even more likely to jump off the wristband...
#2: maybe it's a side effect of having to attempt to connect an fail so often, but the battery life was closer to a single day than anything, often far less than that.
#3: the unit reset many times, after which you'll not have a working clock until you get reconnect. It would reset sometimes spontaneously, sometimes when I powered it on to tell the time. Other times I'd have to reset it to see if it would connect or not... Often the battery would die before I managed a reconnection.
The three above issues are quite problematic, and make this feel like a prototype/experiment product that was rushed out to cash in on the Xmas sales - before much testing was done.
Having spent most of the xmas break wearing a non-functional device (dead battery), or a pointless device (couldn't connect after a reset so could not tell the time), or wearing just the wristband whilst retracing my steps to find where the little black square had gone to, I wasn't impressed. Then, after an LiveView app update was pushed to the market, the new Liveview client on my up-to-date, non-rooted & factory unlocked HTC Desire phone (supposedly one of the few supported devices), it worked perfectly from one glorious evening! (This was unfortunately after Xmas, after my family got to see their 'tech guru' show off his latest innovation that doesn't function (last year I had an Archos 5IT which after an OTA update decided to not connect to any wifi network - &*%!). That device got working after a few tweaks and updates, but it lives in a drawer and will be recycled soon enough.
So, back to the LiveView - it was WORKING !!! - I was living the dream finally! I got a call notification, then later a gmail notification and even read most of the email on my wrist. All the while I was able to tell the time whenever I wanted without taking my phone out of my pocket - I've not worn a wrist watch this century. Fantastic.
Alas, the next morning, the power button (one of only two buttons on the unit) stopped working rendering the unit completely useless.
It's being repaired at the moment by SE.
I love it, but it needs stability and a redesigned strap. At least it wasn't crazy expensive.
I'd recommend waiting for the next generation, or at the very least until a proper firmware update is released.
Not the only one on the market
I saw a number of similar devices when I stopped over in HongKong during New Years.
Perhaps these more generic types will prove more compatible to a greater variety of Android handsets.
Attend two "no phones allowed" 6 hour meetings and let's talk again