Though Pebble was not the first smartwatch, it was the first one to put "smartwatch" on the map and in my opinion started commercial wearable gadget revolution. Following that we saw a lot of different smartwatches released from other crowdfunding campaigns and all the way to a big name electronics manufacturers who rushed with their releases. As I mentioned in my other reviews, I personally felt like in a lot of these cases the designs were over-engineered with useless features that were not practical, made devices bulky, compromised their reliability especially when worn outside in a rain, etc, and the number one biggest problem - pathetic battery life. Doesn't matter if you squeeze in 600mAh or 800mAh battery - if you have to charge your smartwatch every day or every other day, that becomes a hassle. The key is to find a perfect balance between performance, display, battery capacity, and functionality. If I go back to Pebble reference, with simplicity of that design you were able to get almost 5-6 days with a light use. Well, there is a new kid on the block and it's name is WeLoop. It looks like these guys really took their time to figure out how to design a smart notifier watch by studying everything available out there. The result - WeLoop Tommy! Here is what I found.
Arrived in a very elegant minimalistic black box, inside you will find a Tommy smartwatch in a very neat display setting with additional accessory of magnetic USB charger and instruction manual. Instruction is all in Chinese, so not much help there, but operation is very self explanatory... as soon as you figure out how to switch watch menus to English. Here is a very simple instruction how to do, took me a few trials, so you can learn from my experience. The watch has 4 physical buttons. On the left side you have magnetic charging connector at the top and properly labeled Return button below it, and on the right side you have properly labeled up/down arrow and middle Enter button. Click on Enter button once, and scroll down 6 steps to "Setting" icon. Click Enter button again, and scroll down to 5th selection and click Enter again. Language will switch to EN (english) and from now on you are in business!!!
Back button always takes you back to the previous menu. In the main display screen, you can click up/down arrow buttons to toggle between 3 default watchfaces of a digital big numbers, digital small number and date, or analog hands. I'm sure more watchfaces will to follow because it's one of the options in their app under "coming soon". From the default screen when you hit Back button, you see the current battery status, BT id, and the date. I have been using WeLoop for more than a day, and it's still at 100%. Clicking Enter from default screen takes you to a main menu with various selections. Bluetooth gives you a status with a device you paired up with. Music gives you a display of the currently playing track from your phone (proper tag ID), and up/down arrows control skip next/prev, and Enter button controls Play/Pause. Camera takes you to a remote control screen for either taking pictures from your phone or switching to take videos where corresponding media is stored in your phones gallery. Fitness menu gives you a number of steps, burned calories, and total walked distance based on built-in pedometer, though accuracy might be a bit questionable. Fitness app is also work in progress, so I can't wait until I can track it from the phone, but for now you can get all your stats directly from your watch.
Notification is my favorite feature in the Main menu where it stores about half a dozen of your last notifications per Message Filter configuration (phone calls, text, emails, etc.). Notification could be configured easily from the App, that functionality is working 100% and very easy to follow. You just select any app installed on your phone and add it to Message Filtering list. Afterwards, all those messages will be forwarded to your WeLoop watch. Phone numbers and text displayed, while with emails you get the email address and the subject line; for now you can't scroll the message. When you are in Settings menu, you can toggle other options to customize performance. Also, in Setting menu you can select Anti-Loss option which notifies you when you are far away from your phone. There is also Time & Date setting setting in Settings menu, but it only affect format of clock display when scrolling through Setting/Menu pages. By default the watchface of WeLoop still displays time in 24hr format and I hope they will change it in future updates.
Since I already started to talk about the App, it's available on Google Play store under "weloop tommy". Even so it's still work in progress since Replace Dial, Weloop App, and Alarm menus are "coming soon", the rest is VERY polished and looks professional. Device Connection worked perfectly to pair up watch with a phone (didn't even have to go into Bluetooth menu of my phone). Messaging Filter is very robust with selection of apps you want to send notification to your watch. Check For Updates also works perfectly where it found a new firmware version for the watch and within minutes sent OTA (over-the-air) update to my smartwatch! You can also enter remote camera mode from within this app. I have no doubt we are going to see a lot of updates soon. When I visited weloop.cn website and with a help of Google translator, I see there is a very active forum community (all in Chinese, though). So I'm sure they are getting a lot of feedback from the current users. From the website itself and some screenshots of activity tracker and other watchfaces I assume they are either working on new stuff now or perhaps it's already available for iPhone devices. I will continue my review in a future with any updates as they come in.
Now, regarding the hardware. I typically start with that first, but here decided to save the best for last. I already talked about buttons and mentioned magnetic charger which is very similar to the one used in Pebble. The charger attachment is very secure and charging was very fast. Of course, we are dealing with 110 mAh battery so it's expected to charge fast. BUT, the battery should last 21 days (!!!!!). Yes, according to the spec it will last 3 whole weeks!!! I will have to come back and confirm that, but so far after over a day of use with backlight on - the battery is still at 100%. So, I'm very impressed. Watch is rated at 5 ATM which means it's waterproof for up to 50 meters. There are no open ports or mic or speakers, the case is sealed and very well build. As a matter of fact, it has a high-strength mineral glass mirror, and I brushed it a few times against various objects during the day, not even a sign of scratch. The watch band is made out of a durable TPU material, and though there is something that appears like a push pin, this is not a standard replacement band. The watch itself is very lightweight and thin, and feels very comfortable around your wrist. Display is 1.26" Sharp memory LCD which is VERY low power and like e-paper with a high contrast and ALWAYS on! Backlight is brief and blue colored, good for night use; during the day you don't even need it. Visibility was great even in a direct sunlight. Also, all the notifications are accompanied by a light vibration so you know when to look at the display. Obviously, there are no limitations where you can wear this watch: either when you are washing dishes or taking a shower or outside under the rain or snow.
Overall, you might ask, but it almost sounds like Pebble? First of all, it's only $67.44free shipped (use the coupon WTOMMYZZ the price will be $61.99), it has built in fitness functionality, and it supposed to last the whole 3 weeks on a single charge! Even if it turns out to be only 2 weeks, I would still be ecstatic about it!!! All of my smart watches require recharging every 2-5 days (depending on the watch and it's use). I can't go on a one week vacation without worrying about charger (which is proprietary in all of those cases anyway). Do I think WeLoop Tommy is 100% perfect smart watch? Not quite there yet. But it already has a very mature hardware and an excellent design and build. All it needs is to add more App features which I'm sure just around the corner. But even with what it got so far - it's very impressive already, and hopefully it will only get better from here.
Here are the pictures.