Moto 360

As we near the official release of the Moto 360 next week, speculation and parsing of the little information we have has gone rampant. While we don't know a whole lot about the watch — even though we've held it in our own hands — we do know that the big sore spot for many is the so-called "black bar" at the bottom of the display. A seemingly-necessary bit of technology is smushed down at the bottom of the Moto 360's display, and while it doesn't actually take much away from the experience, it sure is hard to miss once you've noticed it.

With the launch date approaching, we really want to know what you think — will the black bar on the bottom of the Moto 360's display keep you from picking up this otherwise-attractive smartwatch? Be sure to vote in our poll.


Reader comments

Poll: Will the 'black bar' keep you from buying a Moto 360?


Yeah I'm actually quite sick of all this bezel hate, they're really not that big of a deal!

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It doesn't bother me all that much but, a watch is an extremely personal item, even more so than a phone I would say.

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Doesn't bother me either. My favorite part is that there that people are still just now noticing it.

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I think the back bezel makes it more unique and I would prefer to have that then have something half an inch into the watches screen.

When the 360 was the only circle on the block: "OMG BEST THING EVE3RS! THROWING CASH AT SCREEN!1

When the LG R watch rumor arrived, the tidal wave instantly reversed: "OMG THE 360 IS HORRID! LOOK AT THE BLACK BAR! DOA! LG R WATCH FTWWWW!"

Society is strange.

The sad truth is Android Wear is not all that it's current state, IMO. Round, rectangle, sqaure, it's all the same. I returned my Gear Live in 4 days. It was gimmicky at best.

But circles, black bar or not, FTW I guess. None of them are for me thus far as the functionality is identical despite the physical design.

LOL! The funny thing is, is when Apple decides to launch theirs they might have something similar that's tacky. But the fans will say : OMGZ!!!!! It's da bestest EV3R!!

It was the 'Belle of the Ball' not so very long ago. Shame because it has, even before it was released, changed the Game altogether

Elegant timepieces come down to style preferences.

Huge watches are not my style. Gangsta had its niche with Flava Flav. Don't sport gangsta myself.

Obviously, technology is rapidly evolving. Ergo the Asus Zen. While I appreciate techno-geek-nerd's enthusiastic willingness to be lab rats, I have absolutely have no reason to feel compelled to pay to be a proof of concept alpha tester nor early adopter of this fledgling technology.

I'm sure my patience will be rewarding.

Depends on how big it looks in person, and if LG or Samsung come up with a sexier, non-blemished watch :) Or Apple, you never know...

Yeah...but it's ASUS. Don't have much faith in them, no matter how cheap they tend to be. Haven't had good experiences with their devices.

The black bar doesn't bother me a bit. Still won't be buying it, or any other smart watch, until a can see a use case for it.

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The funny thing is that no one knows if this is even the final version of the watch. It could look completely different and not have the bar. Its probably really close to the real thing but still, ya never know.

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My thoughts exactly.

An release day, Moto could be like "what black bar?"

Maybe that is why the delay?

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Via HTC One

Hyperbole. Point was, this isn't a case where we're all guessing it'll have a black bar. Motorola's made it excessively clearly it'll have a black bar. There's plenty of elements of its design that could change by launch, but that's definitely not one. They've been very transparent about it, shown it that way clearly, and made it a requirement of the watchface design contests to leave that area empty.

Red herring?

Don't really care about the black bar!

Just entertaining the possibility that a fully round screen is possible but wasn't available during the prototyping stage.

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Via HTC One

Beyond unlikely. Pretty absurd, really. Particularly because it kills their ability to test the device properly around this problem if all their prototypes, samples, demo units, and developer instructions are of this design. It would be utterly asinine. Also, pointless. Instead of constantly trying to tell us why it was necessary, unfortunately, and trying to weather the bad press, they could have waved us all off by saying, "don't worry, this is temporary."

Red herring.

something, especially a clue, that is or is intended to be misleading or distracting.

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Via HTC One

I know the definition of "red herring." I have yet to see any reason why using one here, in this position, would be anything but the stupidest PR move possible. Completely and utterly insane.

Like manufacturers haven't been using decoys for ages. I am not saying that in this case it is true. Just saying it would be epic! You think it is asinine, but under promising and over delivering would be epic in the fullest definition of the word.

Like the one more thing moment at Apple!

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Via HTC One

I thought the same way about the HTC One M8 with the black logo strip. "That can't be the final design." It was.

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IMO it the decision comes down to the cutout the watch will have missed the mark on so many other levels that it wouldn't be worth it.

And yet we don't know that. And we don't know if the LG round one will have a huge bezel around the whole face, or inductive charging, or pretty much anything let.

Waiting for a $100 smartwatch (at a stretch $150). Considering that you can import pretty good phones from China for that price, it shouldn't be hard to make a smart watch for that price considering the low specs of smart watches. I don't want a fancy design like the 360. I want functionality.

I picked the No answer, but the real answer, now, is: depends on how the LG G Watch R turns out. If it looks good, has comparable features and battery, and doesn't have the black bar, then sure, I'd be kind of stupid to get the more limited one. If the more likely scenario pans out, though, and the 360 kicks its butt, and/or the G Watch R has the same limitation, then no, the black bar won't be my deciding factor.

A round watch with a mostly round face is stupidly annoying. But it wouldn't affect my decision of whether or not to buy.
I have a Pebble ... I'm not in the market for a new smart watch until someone shows me functionality that I'll use that I don't have ... but out of curiosity, can anyone tell me why the "stuff" in the bezel couldn't have been put on the side of the watch ?

Round watch with a round face is annoying?? I'll tell you what will be annoying....a round watch with a square face. A square watch with a round face. A hexagon watch with an apple logo on it....those will be annoying.

The theory is either that is where the light sensor is or that there was no room on the board for the control circuitry which had to be on the same side as the display. Either seems a bit lame... I am sure we will eventually know for sure.

When ifixit does a tear down assuredly.

But I am on Alex's side, it is more of a design choice than a design limitation, as Phil would have you believe.

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Via HTC One

Motorola seriously needs to release this ASAP. Most people that are now waiting for the LG and Samsung ones were probably 360 customers at first.

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I would need to see the two in person - my concern isn't so much the bar on the screen, but how large it is and/or how well it wears on the wrist. Now, my current Citizen Skyhawk is not dainty, but at the same time, if I'm replacing it, I don't want to end up looking like I'm sporting a hockey puck on my arm.

No need for a smartwatch or any kind of watch is what will prevent me from buying the Moto 360.

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I will not buy any circular smartwatch as this means either a rather big watch or one small enough with lots of space missing to display information. When we used to have analog watches the circular display was there for a reason but why should anyone want a circular display when all the information needs a rectangular space. Seems like a win of design over functionality

I am that fickle to not get it simply because of the bar. It would drive me crazy. Like having a screen protector with a large bubble in it.

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They've left it too late regardless. I'll wait another couple of months to see what everyone else does. I'm sure a lot of people's interest has peaked by this point.


I really don't notice the black bar. Sure I'd prefer it wasn't there. But it's not really a deal breaker. If others announce a rounded watch without the bar, I may consider them. But as of right now, I'm patiently awaiting launch day!

Posted from my HTC One M8 via Android Central App

I won't be buying this or any other smartwatch until I see a clear use case. At this point, I'm not convinced. What really concerns me is hearing tech enthusiasts saying they still haven't seen a killer feature for a smartwatch. Until that happens, I think I'll sit back and see how this develops.

I got the LG G watch (for 50% when I got my G3 from ATT). At that price it was worth checking out. After wearing it for a few weeks now I feel lost when I am not wearing it. I no longer have to take my phone out of my pocket every time I get an email, text, call etc. I just glance at my watch and can see if I actually need to respond. As a side effect, my phone's battery lasts a lot longer since I am no longer constantly turning it on and off.

My G watch charge lasts around 30 hours, and my G3 battery can go 24+ hours.

I don't know if there a single "killer feature" but as a whole I am really really liking my watch.

surprised so many people don't mind the black bar I wouldn't buy that or the M8 until they are able or willing to engineer it without the bar/bezel... not that it matters, motorola only have to convince the carriers to buy it anyway

No, but the "giant disk glued to a leather band" look will. This design is simplistic to the extreme - "minimalistic" is not even close as a description here. If Motorola paid some designer-type (and I think they did) to come up with this thing, they got ripped-off, big time. Where is the design? Disk on strap, nothing more.

That's what I've been saying. I saw a comment on another article where someone said that the Pebble Steel looks like a cheap toy and the Moto 360 looks premium. I'm like, "WHAT?!?!" I see the 360 and think of a kids watch without the Spider-Man picture on it.

And a round watch face? Doesn't everyone know that that design is the result of 200 year old mechanical movement technology? Why apply it to a digital device? Because it "looks good"? Nothing like form over function - that always works for the best!

With lg, Samsung, & Asus coming out with smart watches soon that's what Is going to stop me

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I think a lot depends on the state of the other round watches by the time the 360 finally comes out. If they seem imminent it might make me hold out to see how the others turn out...

I doubt the flat-tire look would be a deal breaker, at least not for me. However, with all the other round watches rushing to market, there are other devices with other features to consider now.

Didn't bother me the black bar as the watch looks awesome, but now LG has a full round face, I'm waiting for the full speck on both before choosing one to buy.

I hate watches. Putting one on my wrist is like fingernails on chalkboard to me.

Ironically I used to love watches when I was a kid.

Because a giant square on my wrist is better then a tradition circle for a watch face. The "bezel" as it where is small enough that it doesn't really impact the device at all for usability and the like. I think folks are making this a far bigger deal than ti really is.

If they would have just released the damn thing 3 months ago the poll would be nearly 100% yes. Now on the horizon you're going to have multiple options that won't feature an ugly, useless black bar.

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Oddly, yes the black bar will prevent me from buying it. At first glance it looks like an issue with the screen and I'll notice it every time I use it. Not to mention, every person that wants to see it will immediately comment on the black bar and ask if it's broken.

No thanks.

Some people are saying that people are making too big of a deal about it, but I wouldn't spend that much money on something that has a glaring flaw on it. Especially since I knew as soon as it was announced that it wouldn't be long until other circular smartwatches started being released without that black bar.

So you mean the black bottom on all those pictures of the Moto 360 I've seen isn't just part of the theme, it marks the actual bottom of the screen? Wow, that's disappointing.

Its either that or no dynamic light sensor in your watch and bad battery life. They could put it in the strap, but then you cant change the strap. The Asus watch coming out actually looks like its cheating abit, and that the screen will be rectangle and not actually rounded, Just an illusion from the design.

The thing is, Motorola has taken so long to bring this to market, that other brands are starting to announce their second generation smart watches. Unless it has some killer features the others don't, it might not do so well.

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Don't mind it at all. Still won't be buying one as I don't feel the necessity to own a smartwatch. Hell, I even find regular watches unnecessary; if I wanna know what time it is, I can just pull out my phone and have a quick glance at it.

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No. $249 for what constitutes a toy will keep me from buying it. I stopped wearing a watch a while back and somehow linking one to my phone seems like an exercise in uselessness.

I noticed the black bar shortly after it was first announced and I decided it was not for me.

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I really don't see what all the whining about that bezel is for. The only two things that will stop me from buying the Moto 360 are it's size on my wrist and the price of LG's round watch. I am also really interested to see what the ear piece Motorola teased is going to be.

Posted via Android Central App on the Moto X

the only problem with the 360 is that it is not 360 degrees. Well, it is, but then there's that weird band to remind one that this is an early technology and that it is not there on purpose, but for limitation of technology, or lack of a solution to make it without that black thing. It was easy to see that soon enough someone would come up with the real thing. Except maybe for the battery life, that in all of them. What's the time? oh, Gosh, dunno, my watch run out of steam. And, yeah, i found it weird even before LG's new watch. And probably won't be buying either. Wait. I don't even have a regular watch. :P

I'll have to see them both first, but at the moment, I like the look of the G Watch R the best, but since they didn't mention wireless charging, I have to assume it doesn't have it. Thus, the 360 would win by default. Wireless Charging beats black bar.

Depends on how the LG R looks and functions with Android notifications vs. the Moto 360 and easiest to recharge.

I will be using a black watch face on either, so the black bar at the bottom will be a lot less noticeable.

How about, no, the watch is ugly. Looks good for a smartwatch, but that isn't saying much yet. Waiting a a year or two until they mature.

Why bother with this watch, given the new LG G Watch R? It looks like a watch and has no unsightly black bar.

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It is wild how amazing and new and cutting edge the Moto 360 looked when photos started to leak out and how, only a few weeks later, it is looking dated and 'last generation' in light of some of the more recent leaks.

I think if Moto had released the watch even a month ago it would have been a HUGE hit (as smart watches go) but now I don't see it selling that well outside of tech circles. Pardon the pun.

ppl are spending money on products they want so i'm cool with no wanting to deal with the black bar if you don't like it. But I still say it looks better than any other smartwatches out and I will still be getting it. If the LG R looks better when it comes out the Moto will go on sale, if not I will keep it...simple as that. Some ppl whine to much in my opinion and follow the crowd.