Every time I read another story about how Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)‘s iWatch is a brand-new technology, I feel like I’m living through The Emperor’s New Clothes and nobody else is willing to speak up. While Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG)‘s Motorola MOTOACTV doesn’t possess the full functionality of the rumored iWatch — which hasn’t been fully designed yet, as far as one can tell — it contains many of the critical features that make it a major advance. MOTOACTV has been on the market for well over a year, and yet news of an advanced watch form factor from Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) seems to be an unheard-of leap forward.
While Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG)’s public focus has been on the introduction of Google Glass, with all of the hype that the alleged iWatch is receiving, you must believe Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) is working on the next generation of MOTOACTV. The new Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) product may include complete browsing capabilities and may include functionality that isn’t currently available from Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG), but with this much lead time, Motorola has plenty of opportunity to get prepared. Nothing should be taken away from the designers in Cupertino and the potential that an iWatch poses, but we should at least be honest that it isn’t quite as revolutionary as the chatter in the blogosphere might lead you believe.
What is MOTOACTV?
In the family with Polar heart-rate monitors and other advanced sports watches, MOTOACTV was designed to bundle many of the most popular sports features into a single device. Motorola’s solution provides heart-rate monitoring, GPS to track running, cycling and even over 20,000 golf courses, and what the company refers to as a smart MP3 player — the device tracks which songs you react to and can play an “inspirational” tune when you seem to be tiring. The MOTOACTV also tracks loads of other workout data that can be later downloaded and saved to your computer for analysis and future comparison.
While each of those features makes MOTOACTV a great device for the serious athlete or the weekend warrior, you may be wondering about the big tech features that make it a threat or precursor to the iWatch. By installing an app on your Android smartphone, MOTOACTV can receive calls, texts, Tweets, and posts right on your wrist. Fully integrating additional features such as browsing and expanded voice-activated commands shouldn’t be a major stretch if Motorola continues to push forward with this technology.