Puma Smartwatch first look: A surprisingly attractive Wear debut
Puma signed a 10-year agreement with Fossil to build smartwatches. The Puma Smartwatch is the first of what could be many watches to be born out of that partnership. As long as Wear OS is in it for the long haul too, the collaboration could give us some of the best looking watches running on Google’s smartwatch operating system.
Going sporty has been a bit of a theme for many of Fossil’s own smartwatch brands in 2019, but it was always going to be a sporty affair with Puma’s first watch. It’s a 44mm sized watch made with a nylon case that measures in at 11mm thick and is coupled with 16mm straps.
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It weighs just 28g making it lighter than the Fossil Sport and there’s something quite appealing about the unashamedly gym-friendly design.
The 1.18-inch AMOLED display is fully round (no flat tyres here) and is up there with the best that Fossil smartwatches have to offer. There’s just a single physical crown with that signature Puma logo to break up an otherwise streamlined look. If you like the idea of a smaller framed smartwatch, then Puma’s is going to have big appeal.
In spite of its svelteness, Puma does manage to pack a fair amount in here. Built-in GPS, a heart rate monitor, payment support and all the key motion sensors are there. All without dramatically impacting on the size and build. Chunky Wear watches really are thing of the past and that’s something that should be applauded.
It doesn’t get the best that Wear OS watches have to offer though. There’s no speaker, which has started to crop up on other Fossil-built smartwatches. It still has only 4GB of storage and 512MB of RAM too. But, crucially it does have Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 3100 processor.
Along with general performance improvements, it does bring new smart battery modes, which Wear dearly needs. Puma and Fossil claims you should get 24 hours and 2 additional days utilising these battery modes.
Puma’s smartwatch brings a familiar software experience here too. Everything from notifications, music features, activity tracking powered by Google Fit and numerous alerts are all here.
What we really hoping for here was some good watch faces and a quick browse shows that Puma is going to deliver on the front. That iconic logo is front and centre, but there are also watch faces that absorb your key health and fitness data too.
The collaboration between Puma and Fossil is certainly an interesting one. The sports brand is already investing its time into making its footwear connected and exploring how it could smarten up apparel too.
The Puma Smartwatch doesn’t do anything drastically differently from what else is already out there. But you’ll like it if you’re a Puma fan and you prefer something less showy than some of the other smartwatches out there. But we think it’s what could be born out of this long term partnership that’s really interesting here.
Puma clearly wants to play more in the tech space and hopefully it can help bring something innovative that will be good for Wear OS and smartwatches on the whole.