With 30 days of battery life, the TicWatch Pro smashes its Wear OS competition. But do those long legs sacrifice usability?
It’s something all smartwatch users dream of - being able to wear their watch to bed, or take it off, and not have to worry about charging it. Unfortunately, lithium-ion batteries are as efficient as they can get for their size. So, unless a smartwatch is very large or very thick to accommodate a big battery, there’s little else an OEM can do.
Or so we thought.
The TicWatch Pro
Mobvoi - the company behind the TicWatch S and TicWatch E - has announced a new smartwatch with a 30-day battery life. It’s called the TicWatch Pro, and it has all the same features you’ll find in a regular smartwatch. It’s also powered by Wear OS. You know, that OS with devices that last around a day on a single charge.
The TicWatch Pro takes a novel approach to extending battery life. It’s got two displays which switch on and off depending on the mode the watch is in. One display is a standard OLED unit, the other an FSTN LCD. The most interesting thing about the TicWatch Pro is its multi-layer system. The FSTN LCD literally sits on top of the OLED display. It’s invisible when not in use, so doesn’t impact on user experience in the slightest.
The standard OLED display offers the user experience you expect from a modern smartwatch. That is, beautiful, vibrant colours. The FSTN LCD offers a black and white interface and a different experience altogether. It uses 5 per cent of the power of the OLED display is more power-efficient than Low Power Mode on a regular smartwatch.
Supreme battery life
With the FSTN LCD display activated, Mobvoi reckons you’ll get up to 30-days of battery life from the TicWatch Pro on a single charge. To activate the display, you’ve to enter a dedicated power-saving mode which also switches off some smart features. However, it is an always on display, so you’ll always have information on your wrist.
If you choose to operate the TicWatch Pro normally i.e. with the OLED display turned on, Mobvoi reckons you’ll get up to 2-days of battery life on a single charge. That’s still certainly above average for a smartwatch.
Of course, the aim of the FSTN LCD is to be switched on when you aren’t using the TicWatch for anything fancy. It automatically activates when the watch is idle and switches back to the OLED panel when prompted. It works seamlessly.
Pricing and availability
The TicWatch Pro will go on sale this summer.
Price wise, it’ll reportedly go on sale for under $300 which is incredible considering the development that must have gone into it. There might even be an LTE version coming to the US, although this hasn’t been confirmed yet.