LG sought to add to that value with what it calls Master Tools. Long story short, they’re a handful of apps that use the W7’s mechanical hands in some interesting ways. Easily the most impressive I tested was a compass that made the watch’s hands spin around to point the way north. If that doesn’t appeal, there’s also an altimeter and a barometer, though I couldn’t actually get them to work. If nothing else, though, I could watch the stopwatch feature work all day. For a watch that seems more concerned with style than backwoods functionality, some of these seem like pretty odd addition. Apparently, to embrace the Watch W7 is to embrace a certain degree of absurdity.
Oh, and here’s something that didn’t quite click for me before I saw the W7: it doesn’t have a heart rate sensor built into its stainless steel back. Given how popular fitness wearables are and just how ubiquitous heart rate monitors are now, this feels like a pretty glaring omission. LG wouldn’t confirm my hunch, but I have to imagine the issue here is size — the mechanics that keep a watch’s hands ticking probably take up a non-trivial amount of space inside this body, and I wouldn’t be surprised if the company decided to axe heartbeat tracking in favor of being able to tell the time.
All told, the Watch W7 leaves me a little confused. The ability to tell time well after the watch’s battery goes dark is truly valuable, but my limited hands-on time left me with the impression that mechanical hands on a smartwatch are sometimes more trouble than their worth. That might change over time, though: we’re going to put this thing through the review wringer soon, and maybe that process will turn up something I missed so far.