Guide: Best Watchfaces for Android Wear
When Google announced Android Wear early last year, the starter devices from LG and Motorola showed off exquisite watchfaces in their promotional content, creating as much hype for watchfaces as there was for apps of the new form factor. Come Google I/O when the first devices were made available to the public, developers and users everywhere were disappointed by the lack of an official watchface API. While some chose to make use of unofficial methods, others waited patiently and were rewarded when Google announced that the Android 5.0 Lollipop update for Android Wear would bring an official API with it. In the time since then, we’ve seen watchfaces of every shape and style, from regular analog and digital faces to information-driven and luxury ones. Despite the large selection being beneficial in most ways, the variety sometimes makes for a hard pick, and today we simplify that choice by looking into some of the best watchfaces available on Google Play
Pujie Black understands two important but basic concepts and builds its perfection around them: that the API is vast and need not necessarily be restricted to time, and that no two users are alike and customization should be at the core. Augmenting a classic analog or digital watchface with smart information like battery, weather and calendar, Pujie comes with numerous presets to get you started and then allows flexible customization to each of those presets, significantly broadening the horizons and bringing your perfect creation to your wrist
Minimal & Elegant is the result of some considerable out-of-the-box thinking, opting to ditch generic analog and digital watchfaces and instead go with a unique blend of digital and something else. This watchface displays the time using side scrolling numbers, with weather and calendar information flanking the time and battery status – of the watch as well as the paired phone – right at the bottom. The aesthetics have numerous customization options, with style, color, background, font and more tweak-able to your choice
Roto, as the name aptly states, stands out from the rest of the competition by displaying time through the means of rotating dials rather than rotating hands. The result is a fusion of classic analog movements and modern digital styles, free of mechanical hindrances a regular watch might face in the same scenario. The rotating dial contains calendar information and the minute markers, with an arrow lining up the current minute with the current hour, Roto 360 offers limited customization, allowing you to choose between light and dark themes.
A clear majority of watchfaces choose to provide variety in terms of factors like display style, text color, background color et al. Shadow Clock, however, brings a unique aesthetic to your wrist by ignoring generic modifications and focusing on one unique factor – light source. The result is a simple digital design with text shadow angles varying according to the time of the day, the effect similar to that of a sundial. Shadow Clock doesn’t provide much customization save for dark and light options, relying on the dynamic shadows as a selling point.
Despite most watchfaces choosing to put weather information on the backburner, displaying it in small fields or omitting it altogether, WeatherTime makes weather the center of its existence. The watchface has a regular time and date display, accompanied by the temperature and a full-bleed contextual background image to match the weather conditions. The displayed information is extremely configurable, and can show highs and lows, location details, forecast information and more
With the watch face being the equivalent of a regular Android device’s homescreen, having that perfect look you envision is as important on a watch as it is on a handset. While some may choose minimalism over information, analog over digital, monochrome over color or style over uniqueness, choices vary from person to person and what embodies your idea of perfection may not even slightly appeal to someone else. Which watchface do you think represents your idea of perfection? Let us know in the comments below!
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