Michael Kors Gen 6 Bradshaw smartwatch review: Flaunt your swag
In the late 90s, Delhi kids had this obsession of flaunting their gold-plated watches in school. Maybe they found it “fashionable” or they just wanted to show off how ‘manly’ they were. I never tried to fit in this camp and was happy with my classic Timex watch.
Years later, when I tried the Michael Kors Gen 6 Bradshaw, it brought back flashes of the same extravagant watches my classmates used to show off. This smartwatch takes a different route from the Apple Watch and instead settles for opulence with a bejewelled timepiece. Although I am not a huge fan of smartwatches that have an extra layer of bling, I know people who want their watch to make a design statement and invite attention.
Here is my review of the Fossil-made Michael Kors Gen 6 Bradshaw smartwatch
Michael Kors Gen 6 Bradshaw review: Design and aesthetics
Everybody knows about Michael Kors. I may not like its handbags but it’s hard to ignore how popular they are, especially in Delhi. The designer label is also known for its smartwatches, which are made by the Fossil Group. The Michael Kors Gen 6 Bradshaw is created from the same fabric as Fossil’s own Gen 6 smartwatch, which I reviewed earlier this year. Although both smartwatches are similar in hardware and functionality, they look quite apart.
The Michael Kors Gen 6 Bradshaw is a smartwatch that can double as a fashion accessory. This piece is not for minimalists, and rather the emphasis is clearly on someone who has the right attitude to carry a watch like this. Available in a single 44mm dial size and with different finishes, mine was a solid stainless steel case and a steel bracelet with a rose gold two-tone finish. The watch looks very flamboyant – big, bold and blingy.
The watch is not light, but it didn’t feel awkward on my wrist either. There’s a good chance you will want to wear this smartwatch on special occasions but definitely not every day. Again, it depends on your preference and the persona you carry. I don’t think I would want to wear this watch on my evening walks… it’s just too heavy.
Michael Kors Gen 6 Bradshaw review: Display and functionality
The watch has a 1.28-inch circular AMOLED screen with a resolution of 416 x 416 pixels. Colours are bright and punchy, and the round screen supports both digital and analog watch faces. The Gen 6 Bradshaw also comes with Michael Kors-specific faces preinstalled – in addition to standard WearOS faces.
The three navigation buttons on the right-hand side of the case have a smooth action, and like any other WearOS smartwatch, the two buttons on the side are reconfigurable. Meanwhile, a crown sticks out from the middle and can be pushed in to wake the screen or jump to the app list. The metal watch is rated for 5ATM, which stands for an IP68 dustproof/waterproof rating. This means taking the watch in the pool will be no problem.
Michael Kors Gen 6 Bradshaw review: Performance and battery
The Gen 6 Bradshaw is powered by a Snapdragon Wear 4100+ processor with 1GB of RAM and 8GB of storage. The watch feels fast but not as fast as the Apple Watch Series 7. Navigation is smooth and Google Assistant works well, as expected. The watch also comes with a microphone and speaker, so you can take calls through the watch. For connectivity, it has Bluetooth 5.0, Wi-Fi, NFC, GPS, and a bevvy of sensors including an accelerometer, altimeter, and ambient light meter.
Battery life on the Michael Kors Gen 6 Bradshaw is average, to say the least. The battery on the 44m version, the one I got for review, lasts under 24 hours. You can tweak settings to increase the battery life but for that, you need to give up on the always-on screen, sleep tracking and other features.
Michael Kors Gen 6 Bradshaw review: Software and fitness tracking
Google’s Wear OS is so so. Although this watch is scheduled to get a new version of WearOS 3 in 2022, there is no exact timeline provided by Fossil at the moment. That leaves users with no option but to keep using the older version of WearOS which is kind of messy and scattered. I used this watch with my iPhone but everybody (and in the current state, all WearOS smartwatches work fine with iOS) knows that WearOS works best with the Android mobile OS. That said, I had no problem getting notifications from the iPhone on the watch or using it to control music.
I am not digging deep into WearOS; it is a known platform and has been there for years. Apps can be downloaded from the Play Store, and the Gen 6 Bradshaw comes loaded with Gmail, Google Translate and Google Pay. One app that I used the most during my testing was Spotify, which also allows for offline music playback. Comparing this smartwatch to the Galaxy Watch 4 is inconsequential because Samsung’s watch already runs WearOS 3 and I liked the vibe and small touches built on top of the OS.
The problem with WearOS is that it isn’t a forward-looking operating system. Despite being a Google WearOS watch, the Gen 6 Bradshaw is a complete smartwatch. It tracks your steps count, tracks your sleep, and measures your heart rate as well as blood oxygen saturation.