We love seeing emerging manufacturers make us stand up and take notice of them and Vector is certainly doing that with the Luna smartwatch. Out of the box you’re greeted with a stainless steel unit that’s the ideal weight without being too bulky. It doesn’t sit completely flush to the wrist, but this is a common problem with larger framed smartwatches, rather than a specific issue with Vector.
There are no rear sensors built in and apart from a small charging port, it’s a truly minimalist piece that oozes class from top to bottom. The rear sensor isn’t the only omission here, as there’s no coloured display, no touchscreen and no Android Wear to use. It’s a smartwatch, without the smarts. Instead, the Luna takes a more minimal approach to wearables, offering the core functions of a smartwatch, but nothing more. All of this is controllable through the accompanying app, which is easy to use and customisable at will. That said, without the app, the Luna is fairly redundant, so you’ll need your phone with you at all times.
Options are plentiful for basic functions, but it’s the personalisation potential that really makes it stand out from the crowd. Moving between menus is completed through the side-mounted buttons, mimicking the classic Casio watches of yesteryear. It’s a feature we found ourselves really enjoying and it’s generally a much better navigation experience than the substandard capacitive displays we’ve been used to previously.
The lack of Wear OS and bloatware is a godsend for both processor speeds and battery life. The 280mAh lithium-ion battery may look tiny on paper, but it just keeps on going with no real OS draining it. During our tests, the 30-day battery life that Vector claims is completely realistic, perhaps even a little conservative. Similarly, a lesser processor has been implemented here, with no Snapdragon in sight. Again, the lack of a real OS means there’s no need to pack in excess power, but slowdown is noticeable when using third-party apps.
On the topic of apps, there’s no direct link to Google Play through the Luna watch, and instead your options are limited to Vector’s own app store. Choices are minimal, but some of the big hitters are included. Again we look to the fact that this is a smartwatch utilising core features, but the lack of apps will be a bit too much of a stretch for some to compromise on.
It’s safe to say that the Vector Luna is going to split opinion. It won’t appeal to those who want their smartwatch to function as an independent device, and the lack of a touchscreen and colour display will perhaps turn off the more discerning Android user. What it can deliver though, is a smartwatch that delivers a true extension to your smartphone and that 30-day battery life is unrivalled. Which side will you fall on?