I’m still sitting on the fence with smart watches and smart bands if I’m honest. There’s a piece of me that wants a “normal” watch that I don’t have to tap or faff with to check the time and date. However, there’s another part of me that secretly wants a watch that’ll do a bit more, and this is where the Acer Liquid Leap comes in.
As is usual for my usual slap-dash review I charged it for the briefest period possible. It hit 50% fairly quickly, which is always a confidence-boost as I’m not a fan of slow-charging devices.
The Leap is a waterproof personal fitness tracker which connects to your phone via Bluetooth and keeps an eye on your movements and sleeping patterns. To charge, you clip it into a clasp which presents a microUSB port.
At just 17mm thick it attaches to your wrist using a double-pronged system which can be a little tough to master at first, but it at least gives the confidence that it won’t fall off. Up front, a 2.4cm or 0.9″ capacitive touchscreen can tell you the time, activity information, the date, how many steps you’ve taken, your distance, calories and more. It’ll also control your music too.
To get going you’ll need a companion app on your phone, and that’s the Acer Leap Manager. You can get it for Android and iOS and it’s essential for making the Acer Leap work.
Following my charging, which is done in a “click to close” cradle that sits around the watch itself, you get a code displayed on the screen. This is used to pair the device with the phone via Bluetooth but, don’t be scared, it’s all very easy to do.
The Leap will also let you know when there’s an incoming call, text or calendar appointment, so you keep up to date with everything happening on your phone without having to get it out of your pocket.
Interacting with it is a simple affair, although the initial “double tap” to wake was sometime hit-and-miss, and resulting in us pressing harder and harder on the screen.
Once we were in, it was a swipe and tap-to-select interface which was easy to understand and simple. The watch / smartband itself can also receive updates over Bluetooth, so you know that your device is always up-to-date.
The battery, from my weekend of testing, proved to be more than capable. One day of intense walking knocked it down by about 13%. Acer say up to 7 days is possible, and I think they’re pretty much bang on the money with that.
In use it’s both light and comfortable, plus I really didn’t mind sleeping with it on either. It was so comfortable, in fact, that I didn’t think to take it off in the shower either. I’d forgotten I had it on.
One thing to consider is which wrist you’re going to put it on. Due to the landscape-nature of the screen you can’t read the time / date if it’s on the other wrist, but handily Acer have added a screen-flip option so that you can switch it round.
The accompanying app works well and there’s quick access into the amount of miles you’ve walked, the amount of steps, how many calories you’ve burned, sleep and more. You can also switch phone notifications on and off here if you don’t want the phone telling you when a text or call is coming in.
Overall, I did like this and it worked very well, although I didn’t find the “knack” of waking the Leap very quickly and you do have to be careful about keeping the device close to your phone during an update process. It performed well and was really comfortable, with a natural navigation system, easy charging process and a great battery life.