Pebble Time vs. LG Watch Urbane

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Gizmag compares the features and specs of the Pebble Time (left) and LG Watch Urbane smartwatches

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The retail version of Pebble Time is now available, so maybe you're wondering how it sizes up next to (arguably) the best Android Wear watch, the LG Watch Urbane. Let's compare the two smartwatches' features and specs.

Size

Like most Android Wear watches, the LG Urbane is pretty damn big. Specifically, it's 27 percent taller, 21 percent wider and 15 percent thicker than the compact Pebble Time.

Build

Pebble will eventually sell a Steel version of Pebble Time that has an all-metal casing, but the standard version (the one available now) has a plastic frame with some steel on its bezel.

The Urbane has an all-stainless steel body, and (unlike Pebble) can be mistaken for a regular watch.

Default band material

Pebble went about as cheap as possible with Time's default band: it's a flimsy-feeling silicone affair (imagine the kind of band you'd get with a calculator watch).

The Urbane ships with a snazzy stitched leather band.

Swappable bands (22 mm)

Both watches let you swap their default bands for a standard 22 mm one, something we'd highly recommend if you buy Pebble Time.

Colors

Pebble buyers have three color options (main body, that is) to choose from, while Urbane shoppers need to choose between silver and gold.

UI navigation

Pebble doesn't have a touchscreen, so you'll need to use those four buttons on its sides for getting around its software.

The Urbane uses a touchscreen, though it does also let you scroll through alert cards using wrist-flicking gestures. There's also a button/crown on its right side that serves as a home (short-press) and settings (long-press) shortcut.

Display size

Pebble Time's rectangular screen is only 58 percent as big (going by area) as the Urbane's fully-round display.

Display resolution

Based on pixel density, the LG Watch Urbane's display is 36 percent sharper than Pebble Time's.

Display type

Pebble Time's e-paper screen (it has a similar effect to an e-ink screen like you'd find on a Kindle) is better in direct sunlight and better on battery life.

But the Urbane's OLED display looks much better, much like what you're used to seeing on smartphones and tablets.

Android compatibility

If you have an Android phone, then both of these watches are an option for you. Pebble requires your handset to run Android 4.0 or higher, while the Urbane requires 4.3 or higher.

iPhone compatibility

For Android owners, there are several smartwatches that are much better values than Pebble Time, but it's one of the few notable options for iPhone owners (though you may have also heard of this one).

Voice control

Pebble Time has some voice control, but it's only for quick replies and note dictation. The Urbane's voice control is much broader (you can hit up Gizmag's original Android Wear review for a recap of the many things it does).

Battery

Battery life is still one of the best reasons to buy a Pebble. Time can last up to a week on a single charge, while the Urbane may last two full days (though you'll want to charge it every night to be safe).

Reminders

Oddly, Pebble Time doesn't natively support reminders (creating or receiving), while that's one of the things Android Wear watches like the Urbane are best at.

Water resistance

Pebble Time has excellent water resistance, as Pebble says it can handle up to 30 m (98 ft) submersion. The Urbane's IP67 rating means it's certified for 1 m (3.3 ft) of submersion for half an hour.

Fitness

Also no native step-tracking on Pebble Time. You'll need to download a third-party app – and then try to figure out if it requires you to set it as the main clock face or not for it to work (many of them do, but the Pebble Store doesn't make that clear at all).

The Urbane handles fitness tracking in a much more straightforward way: turn it on, and it will start tracking your steps. There are also plenty of third-party exercise apps for Android Wear for tracking individual workouts.

Software

Pebble's latest OS is best known for its timeline UI, which lets you scroll through recent and upcoming calendar events – by pressing the up or down button from its main clock face.

The Urbane runs the latest version of Android Wear, which we see as a more advanced and context-sensitive (yet still simple) wearable OS.

Release

The Urbane is the newest Android Wear watch that's available today, launching a couple months ago. Pebble Time is now available from Best Buy's online store.

Starting price

Pebble Time could afford to be cheaper, but the Urbane is the most expensive Android Wear watch yet, falling in the same price point as the entry-level Apple Watch. Considering you can now buy a Moto 360 (still one of the best smartwatches money can buy) for US$150, it's hard to get too jazzed about the Urbane's $350 price tag.

For more, you can hit up Gizmag's full reviews of the LG Watch Urbane and Pebble Time.

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