Motorola blames Moto 360 update delays on poor Android 5.1.1 performance, working with Google on a fix


Moto 360 Horween Leather strap DSC06984

Android 5.1.1 for smartwatches was announced back in April, yet here we are well into June and still nothing for the Motorola Moto 360. If we didn’t know better, we’d say it almost feel like Motorola put the 360 on the back burner, what with the software update already rolling out to most other Android Wear devices since then. We know that’s not really the case and with the big changes introduced in Android 5.1.1 — like always-on apps and WiFi connectivity — we had a feeling Motorola might gave run into a few snags.

Those wondering exactly why we haven’t received the update yet, apparently Motorola is still working on getting performance up to snuff and they’re working with Google to make it happen. That’s what they told one user on Twitter who inquired on the lack of 5.1 for their Moto 360.

With Motorola making the puzzling choice of using an underpowered TI OMAP 3 in the Moto 360, it really shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. We had a big feeling performance would take a hit in Android 5.1. At the very least, it’s comforting to finally hear something out of Motorola. Shouldn’t be too much longer before the update hits our Moto 360s and we can finally put all this behind us.


Chris Chavez
I've been obsessed with consumer technology for about as long as I can remember, be it video games, photography, or mobile devices. If you can plug it in, I have to own it. Preparing for the day when Android finally becomes self-aware and I get to welcome our new robot overlords.

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  1. Maybe because of that TI omap processor?

    1. Software can only do so much to renew old hardware.

      1. When I put Kit Kat on my NS4G, it ran really nicely (compared to before that), and considering it only had 512 mb ram, I found the experience enjoyable. Although it was only a money-making phone and not my daily driver.

        But yeah, in most your statement is valid.

    2. I don’t know why in the world would they go with an old processor…I don’t think TI is that much cheaper so it can’t be price.

      1. Because that’s what Motorola used for a long time (see the razr line of phones). I’m sure they hand leftover inventory to burn.

  2. Well if it is going anything like the 5.1 update for the Moto X(2013) … Don’t hold your breath…

    1. Or the Moto X(2014), even my unlocked version doesn’t have it yet.

      1. Anger. Could have gotten one subsidized by AT&T, but am so sick and tired of their bloatware, and the delays in updates, that I put down almost $600 to buy a Pure Edition X 2014.

        That stupid phone hasn’t worked right YET. Laggy, and slow as soon as you put a few apps on it. And now they’re talking about the next version, while mine has never worked right.

        So, we paid for Pure Edition to get updates early. And while an update will supposedly address the memory leak issue, and get our phones working we still don’t have it. And Brazilian phones, and US Cellular customers (who got a subsidy) are already updated, but us…nope. We have to wait for the phone to undergo VoLTE testing at AT&T and T-Mo before they will push us the OTA. So, after all the money we spent to be free from carrier delays, we still get carrier delays. Anger.

  3. Crap why did i purchase a motorola instead of sticking with LG

  4. Almost bought the 360 today for $139 (officially used only several times). I have a $75 eBay gift card from no idea where, so it’d have been $64.
    I didn’t at the end obviously (hence the phrasing)

    Hmmm… While writing this I forgot what my point is/was…

    1. I just bought one from Motorola for $140 brand new. There have been a number of good sales on them. I think they might be clearing out inventory for the second gen 360 but that’s just a theory. I couldn’t pass it up since it’s the best fitting Android Wear watch for small wrists so far. Other models just looked funny on me.

      1. I have a small wrist also, so that’s a big factor for me. Even before getting my G Watch, I was comparing screen sizes etc (although in October the choices were limited).
        (I recently got a metal link band, and unfortunately, even with it the smallest possible, it still moves around.)

        I’m hoping Gen 2 is coming soon. I mean, I’m not in a rush, but since I’m replacing my watch eventually, I’m definitely gonna be watching out for the next 360.

  5. I’ve been wearing my 360 everyday hoping the update would pop up… Guess I’ll go back to my sw3 that has had the update for 2 weeks now…

  6. Just like with the Moto X 2013, it’s nice that they’re giving out this kind of info. Of course, it would be better to have the updates, but at least customers aren’t completely in the dark.

  7. I do hope they get it figured out since I just bought one from them this past weekend. It was delivered today. I really like it so I would hate to have to upgrade within just a month or two from now. At this point, there isn’t another Android Wear watch I would want to buy. I hope I won’t have to buy a new one until after they get NFC payments built in.

  8. “With Motorola making the puzzling choice of using an underpowered TI OMAP 3 in the Moto 360, it really shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. We had a big feeling performance would take a hit in Android 5.1. ”

    I don’t see why considering Wear is not processor hungry. There’s nothing that pushes the device to its limits as is, adding WiFi and always on apps doesn’t seem to be much.

    1. I’d disagree. With my 360, the animations between screens is noticeably less smooth compared to the G Watch and it occasionally hangs doing voice to text. I can only imagine adding more things could slow it down.

      1. Hmm, I didn’t know that. I’ve always had a good experience with it, even when switching between apps.

    2. I also don’t think it is too surprising that they went with the OMAP3. Motorola and TI have a long history including the OMAP 3 at a much lower clock speed in the MotoACTV which in my opinion was a very solid smart watch even if it is a device that is 4 years old.

      I can’t compare it to any other smart watch so Ryan might be right about it not handling animations as well but I got mine for $99 so I’m not going to complain. It is way more capable and useful than I had expected. I like it so much that I might pay the full price for the next version or pick up the Urbane.

    3. You would be surprised how much wifi always running can take a hit on performance. Not to mention what type of on app hits happen as well.

  9. Last stop for the hype train.

  10. I knew that TI chip was going to bite me in the butt.

  11. I have a feeling the update is going to decrease battery life and that is why it is on hold. I am fine with more functionality and decreased battery life. BUT, I bought an extra charger for my office and since it charges wicked fast it is easy to put it on its dock for 30 minutes in the middle of the day.

    BUT pretty much nobody else does this so I can definitely understand the dilema. Ship or not to ship.

  12. It could be the ROM I have, but Lollipop is running SO LOVELY on my M8!! Battery life has increased tremendously, there is no lag. Facebook app lags at times, but I heard about Facebook and Facebook Messenger having issues in Lollipop, so I’ll await on a fix.

    I have no major urgency to update my Smartwatch. It’s such an underused device compared to my other electronic devices. And I have no need for WiFi connectivity (at this moment). I actually prefer Bluetooth. I use Cerberus to let me know when my phone is out of range. WiFi would suck if I’m in an office building with WiFi, like work.

  13. Poor performance meaning Moto 360 battery dies in a few hours with 5.1.1 and any meaningful use of the watch. LCD screen and inefficient processor is a bad combination. Good thing I got mine for free or I’d hate myself.

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