Smartwatches are amazing and fantastic additions to staying connected to everything. Unless of course, you happen to be someone of the smaller boned variety. It's often difficult to find devices that don't make me look absolutely ridiculous while wearing them, no matter how awesome they are. Which is a serious shame, since it drops an entire selection of people from picking up smartwatches simply because they don't fit us properly.
Admittedly, I have tiny little wrists. The thing is though, I'm not as small as people come by a long shot. I know plenty of women far smaller than I am, and if these watches swallow my wrists, I have to guess that they would end up having to wear these watches as as necklaces. I love the style of many of these watches, they're sleek and very attractive — they just happen to be absolutely massive on we smaller boned folks.
It can be incredibly frustrating, as I try on smartwatch after smartwatch only to see my wrists disappear under their size. Where it gets even more troublesome, is that the watch bands are equally frustrating. I can crank some of them all the way down, and still have the watch sliding up and down my arm. Others are either too loose, or they leave an imprint on my arm when I take them off, or try to cut off circulation. Even when I think I've got the watch to a good place, I often find myself adjusting, and readjusting the bands trying to find a comfortable fit.
Part of the question then, is whether smartwatch developers are considering women as a targeted audience. Do they consider us, and the fact that we may need smaller devices in order for them to look fashionable, or even fitting? There a few answers to that question. We've started to see smaller smartwatches hit the market, and get announced. The Asus ZenWatch 2 is a perfect example, though even the Sony Smartwatch 3 isn't too bad.
For the most part it seems as though targeting women is almost an after thought. We've seen some more stylish bands start to appear in the form of fitness bands and the Moto 360 slim band, and while those are steps in the right direction many of the bands on the market are quite masculine in their appearance and design. A few smaller, or more feminine bands would be fantastic to see — especially since not everyone prefers accessorizing the same way. We've definitely started to see progress, but a larger array of options would certainly be nice.
Women aren't considered a target audience for things like this right now. Or at least thats what it would seem with the dearth of options available to us. If it's simply that there are issues continuing to miniaturize the device itself, that's understandable to a degree. Apple and Asus have thrown the gauntlet down when it comes to making things smaller though, and with things like octagonal batteries on the way the list of acceptable excuses dwindles. If it's that they failed to consider what women want out of smartwatch aesthetically, I'm less willing to go along with things.
As it stands right now the ZenWatch 2 is actually at the top of the list of devices I want to use because of it's size options. The smaller size is an 18mm band which is much daintier than most of the options available right now. Between three choices for color of the watch, and multiple bands there are 18 combinations of band plus watch for you to mix and match with. I'm actually really hopeful between the color combination, size, and band options that I'll be able to find something that both fits my wrist, and style. For non-Android Wear options the Alpina Horological smartwatch shows promise as well, and is specifically targeting women which is nice to see. The Guess Connect is on the pricier side, but another gorgeous watch that looks like it will work well for the smaller boned set.
What we have to remember is our issues with watches didn't start with smartwatches. I've always had these dainty little wrists, so I'm used to working around them. What that may mean though is that for me, a circular smartwatch may never be a feasible options. The ones I've tried on the past have been so large that they jut of the sides of my wrist. It may just mean that I'll need to stick with a different aesthetic for my smartwatch purchases. It's not the most thrilling thing to think about, since it negates many gorgeous and fantastic devices. I'm already sort of used to it though, and there are still some great options out there — even if some small children had sturdier wrists than I do.
The coolest thing right now is the promise Android Wear shows, and I want to be a part of that. I can definitely see it going a few different directions. Getting access to Google Wallet, or being able to functionally use the wi-fi and NFC features would be a great way to go. We're really still watching as smartphones, and their abilities develop, so it's hard to say where exactly things are going to go. The top two on my list are definitely a smaller, sleeker design, along with Google Wallet.
For the time being, finding a smaller smartwatch is going to mean seriously narrowing the field. In this case, until Asus is ready to show off their stuff, I'm using the Sony Smartwatch 3. Manufacturers definitely need to start keeping in mind that all tech users are not bulky, and giving us the option of smaller devices and bands. With any luck that's what we'll see as we move into the next wearable chapter.
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