Launched earlier this year, Cogito’s metal-clad connected device, the Cogito Classic Solid Stainless Steel, reached our headquarters last month and we got the chance to fiddle with it. For more than a month, we subjected the device from rigorous test; we even accidentally dropped it. (Sorry!) If you’re planning to buy this, check out our full field report below.
The watch looks beautiful. It’s made of steel; and calling it ‘robust’ and ‘hardened to last’ are pure understatements. It is designed by Xavier Houy, a french designer who recently won a Red Design award.
Needless to say, much of its weight comes from the watch itself. The case is made of metal, precisely laser-cut and holed to fit all the necessary parts to make it tick and ping the user. Its bezel has a brushed metal finish with laser etched numbers. If you’re a fan of wearing watches with big-a** watch faces, you will definitely love this (especially if weight isn’t going to be an issue).
The watch has 4 digital controls and 1 crown, which are also made of metal. Switches are tightly fit and there is no cheapo-feeling when pressed. I will discuss about the features of these switches later.
In case you’re wondering, the watch may be submerged to water up to 10ATM. Based on other metrics, 10atm is equal to 100 meters or 330 feet. It’s okay to be used for snorkeling, but definitely not for scuba diving. We managed to do test this while snorkeling in Batangas last March. Yes, we bravely did it; fortunately, the watch didn’t bug down.
The metal band is user replaceable. It is quite difficult though to find a suitable and fitting band as the watch casing is too big. We got stuck on using the supplied metal band as there’s no available band that looks great with the already beautiful and functional watch case of Cogito Metal.
As for battery life, on paper, the watch can stay up for a year. Its powered by conventional CR2032 and SR626SW button-cell batteries that power the watch and the notification functions respectively. This type of battery do not require charging, thus relieving you from the stress and hassle of daily charging, which we always do on our Moto 360 (and weekly on Pebble Steel). Our Cookoo Watch and Cogito Pop are still running as of now, and we haven’t actually replaced its batteries.
One of my gripes with the Cogito Steel – just like its predecessors – is its non-user friendly installation prerequisites and quirks. For the device to fully function, it is required to download a companion app called Connectedevice via Play Store or Cogito on iOS. This isn’t exactly an issue since we’re used to doing this initial task prior to using all features of almost any smart accessory.
What I am particularly not happy about is the app’s incompatibility with most Android devices. Minor disappointments, moreover, are the apps UI on both iOS and Android, and the uneasy registration requirement and process just to turn on some features like the new Activity Monitor on Cogito Classic Steel. It would have been nice had they implemented Facebook Connect API on the app to easily register and link all Connectedevice devices that users may have. I’ve got 3 Connectedevice watches, and the app doesn’t seem to have a feature that allows me to login and see all the devices I previously paired with my account.
Like other and previous Connectedevice’s products – Cookoo and Cogito – Cogito Classic Metal is meant to be used as a notifier. This means that it only pings or sends simple notifications to the user, who then decides whether to answer or mute it.
Almost all of the notifications sent to the watch
are complemented with a mild vibration, which I honestly find very useful especially during meetings. Unlike its predecessors, this time, Cogito classic already displays the name of callers and messengers (for SMS). Cookoo and Cogito Pop only display icon on its watch face.
Apart from calls and texts, the watch also sends mail, calendar, battery and other app notifications. Most of the time, whenever I receive important notification, I skip looking at the details on its companion app but rather proceed directly to the app on subject. This, technically invalidates the purpose of the companion app as the latter is only meant to be a synchronization conduit. I get Connectedevice though – the companion app may be used as the central hub of information, but such isn’t the case on me.
The watch has too many buttons or switches. It has 4 digital switches, and 1 crown to be exact. During my test, I only got to use 3 of the 5 switches – the one on top of the crown (for remote shutter and muting an alarm), and the other one below it (to display current activity goal or progress). The other 2 on the left side of the watch body are to enable watch face light and to enable “find my phone ” mode respectively.
But perhaps, the best thing about the new Cogito is its Activity Monitoring feature. When enabled, vibration mode will be turned off to drastically save battery. It primarily monitors movement thru the hardware sensor installed on the device. It can sense whether your lightly active, very active or not active at all. It shows the amount of calories you have burned, and alerts you if you’re inactive (you may set the sensitivity and time via companion app).
This watch is infused with so many functionality and design elegance. But we still stand by our love for smart accessories and devices that save us the hassle of charging every night. We fell in love with the first Cooko and the Cogito Pop because of its 1-year up time; and adored Pebble Watch with its functionality. Cogito Classical Metal isn’t exactly a direct fusion of Cookoo and Pebble Watch, but it got us hooked because of its features, albeit imperfect in some respects.
It is a luxury product by virtue of material used, design and positioning. Currently, the product retails for about PhP9,000 and has been selling like hotcakes at Power Mac Center.
Giancarlo Viterbo is a Filipino Technology Journalist, blogger and Editor of gadgetpilipinas.net, He is also a Geek, Dad and a Husband. He knows a lot about washing the dishes, doing some errands and following instructions from his boss on his day job. Follow him on twitter: @gianviterbo and @gadgetpilipinas.