You’ll be able to customize a Moto 360 watch next month

Motorola plans to expand its Moto Maker customization order process, allowing people to design their own Moto 360 smartwatch. The new program will start next month, says Wired, which reported the news on Thursday.

moto maker moto 360

The customizing process will be similar to that for the Moto X, Motorola’s flagship phone. For the handset you can choose colors for the front and back and different access colors for the buttons, order custom engraving and choose a message to be shown at boot-up. Moto Maker for the watch is the same but with fewer options.

Customers can choose from three watch casings, for example, in either silver, black or champagne. Next is a choice of various leather or metal bands. Finally, buyers can customize a boot-up message on their 360. Just like with the current Moto Maker process, a high-resolution render will display the watch based on the selections.

I’ve always felt that phones were fairly personal so I appreciate the Moto Maker option the company introduced with its first Moto X in 2013. Watches are even more personal, though, so the custom order choices make even more sense with this product. And they help Motorola further differentiate its watches in a growing sea of [company]Google[/company] Android Wear competitors.

720,000 Android Wear smartwatches shipped in second half of 2014

Smartwatches might get a lot of attention, but it’s important to remember they’re still a new product category, and not a real commercial force yet. Case in point: A new report from Canalys indicates that only 720,000 Android Wear devices were shipped after the platform launched in June, and those devices had the might of Google and some of the world’s biggest hardware makers behind them.

According to Canalys, which drew data from its internal quarterly market tracking service, the Motorola’s Moto 360 smartwatch was the “clear leader” among the six Android Wear smartwatches currently available. The report also noted that the round LG G Watch R performed significantly better than its squarer sibling.

Although 720,000 might seem like a large number, let’s put this in perspective: It really appears that mainstream consumers don’t want or don’t understand why they should want a smartwatch. It’s also worth noting that iPhone owners can’t use Android Wear devices, which eliminates a lot of potential customers.

Apple said recently it sold 34,000 iPhones per hour during the past quarter — which means it sold more iPhones on average in a single day than six different Android Wear smartwatches did in half a year. Pebble has sold 1 million smartwatches over the life of the company, including an estimated 600,000 units between last March and December, but remember, Pebble is a startup. It used to be a Kickstarter and it didn’t get revealed at Google’s annual developer’s conference.

Also consider that the Canalys numbers measure units shipped, not units sold. It’s possible there are a few Samsung Gear Live smartwatches languishing on Best Buy shelves waiting for a clearance sale.

The smartwatch market will change markedly once Apple enters it in earnest. Nobody really knows how many smartwatches Apple is going to sell when Apple Watch launches sometime this April. Estimates range from a few million in its first year all the way up to 30 million units shipped in 2015. Apple inspires such dedication that there are going to be people who purchase — even line up for — Apple Watch, regardless of features, performance, or reviews, and this latest data point indicates it’s very possible that there will be more Apple Watches sold in its first day of availability than the total number of smartwatches running Google’s Android Wear platform.

10 things I learned about the Moto 360 smartwatch

The Moto 360 with Android Wear may look like a mockup, but the product is real and does work based on a video interview with Motorola’s Jim Wicks. Here’s what we learned from from Wicks about the watch.