Week in wearable: TicWatch C2, Misfit Vapor 2, and Wear OS learns a new trick

And why it was a good week for smart rings

It’s time for your weekend wearable bulletin. Week in wearable is where we round up the stories, big and small, that made headlines over the last seven days.

It’s certainly been another corker of a week, with more new devices than you can shake a smartwatch at. Mobvoi launched the TicWatch C2 and the Misfit Vapor 2 broke cover, while Coros returned with another sporty smartwatch contender.

Smart rings also had a big week: our Oura ring review went live, while Motiv announced a new smart ring that can unlock your online accounts.

Facebook also confirmed it’s working on AR smartglasses, while the fate of the Oculus Rift 2 was thrown into uncertainty. But before we get into that...

The stuff you might have missed

Week in wearable: Misfit Vapor 2 and TicWatch C2 land, Wear OS learns a new camera trick

There's so much going on in the world of wearable tech, we can't possibly write about it all. For those stories, we've rounded them up down below.

Wear OS learns a new camera trick

The latest Pixel 3 camera update has brought a new camera viewfinder to Wear OS. As first reported by Android Police, Pixel owners can now see the viewfinder from the watch, letting you snap shots remotely (good for those group shots). You’re also able to flip between cameras from the watch and even set a time. Better yet, it apparently works even when the phone screen is off.

The new app has been rolling out this week to all generations of Pixel devices, so those who haven’t upgraded to the new Pixel 3 won’t be left out.

Samsung gets its wearables in HSBC banks

Nothing like a This week HSBC announced it’s launching a pilot program to use Samsung’s wearables in its Manhattan branch. The manager and a dozen other employees will be given Samsung Gear S3 smartwatches to test whether this can smoothen out day-to-day operations and customer service.

Each smartwatch will have a special HSBC enterprise app. When a customer enters the bank, an employee will ask the nature of their visit and use their smartwatch to communicate this to a bank associate. The theory is that this will minimize wait times, while associates can also use the smartwatch to alert the branch manager when they need support.

HSBC says it’s already seeing improvements, although we’re not sure why they’re using the Gear S3 over the more recent Galaxy Watch.

VivaLnk to start selling wearable temperature monitor worldwide

VivaLnk, the company looking to bring medical-grade health data to the masses, this week announced a partnership with Reckitt Benckiser to distribute its wearable continuous temperature monitor, FeverSmart.

FeverSmart is designed to be used by kids and is worn under the armpit. It then lets their parents track temperature data over the course of several days. We spoke to the company in early 2017, which has also got a product called the VitalScout, a patch for tracking stress.

The week in wearable tech

Week in wearable: Misfit Vapor 2 and TicWatch C2 land, Wear OS learns a new camera trick

New smartwatches galore: Ticwatch C2, Misfit Vapor 2, Coros Apex

It was a bumper edition week for smartwatches. First, Misfit announced a follow-up smartwatch with the Vapor 2. It’s doubling down on fitness with built-in GPS this time around (it was promised for the first watch, but Misfit ended up killing the feature), but the watch will still be running Google’s Wear OS. The addition of NFC with the Vapor 2 also means you'll be able to use Google Pay. Oh, and it's coming in two sizes - 41mm and 46mm - and eight different color options.

Meanwhile this week Mobvoi launched the TicWatch C2, a more stylish success to the TicWatch S and E that manages to keep the price down to $199.99.

Hands on: TicWatch C2 review

Thirdly, Coros made a return this week with the Apex, a sports watch to rival Garmin, Polar and the rest of the gang. The Apex will last up to 30 days in normal battery mode and 35 hours during GPS tracking, while UltraMax mode stretches that out to 100 hours. Impressive stuff.

Swatch's Swiss OS is still happening

Week in wearable: Misfit Vapor 2 and TicWatch C2 land, Wear OS learns a new camera trick

Swatch confirmed this week that it still plans to get into smartwatches. Its planned Swiss OS platform will still make its debut either by the end of the year or in early 2019, the company told us.

Swatch first started talking about Swiss OS back in early 2017, but things went a little quiet. It plans to launch on a Tissot-branded watch, and will presumably follow with more after. This should give Wear OS and maybe even Apple reason to be concerned.

Samsung's battery problem: It comes at night

Week in wearable: Misfit Vapor 2 and TicWatch C2 land, Wear OS learns a new camera trick

Some owners of the Samsung Gear Sport and Gear S3 have reported a battery problem on their smartwatches. According to reports the battery is draining massively in the middle of the night, with owners going to bed with almost a full tank and waking to find their smartwatch dead.

Samsung says it's aware of the issue. It told Wareable in a statement: “At Samsung, customer satisfaction is core to our business and we aim to deliver the best possible experience. We are aware of reports about Samsung Gear S3 and Gear Sport devices experiencing battery drain issues, and advise affected users to restart their device to resolve the issue.”

No word yet on when there will be a fix, but at least there appears to be no reports of it happening on the newer Galaxy Watch.


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