Sony is back with its SmartWatch 2 which is slimmer, more stylish and better than the original. The gadget does cost more at £149, but that's half the price of Samsung's Galaxy Gear.

The SmartWatch 2 can be used with any Android device running version 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) or later. Pairing is easy thanks to a built-in NFC chip.

See also: full SmartWatch 2 review

Sony has stuck with the same silicon rubber wrist strap (available in various colours) which is prone to getting a bit grubby and gets clammy. Luckily there are leather and metal options, though and you can use any 24mm strap you like.

The device has got slimmer but has a larger screen. At 1.6in there's space for six icons and a status bar at the top. Below the screen are familiar touch-sensitive navigation buttons while a physical power button sits on the side.

As a watch should, the device now shows the time constantly. Pressing the button once brightens the screen and a second press launches the interface.

Connected to your companion device, the SmartWatch 2 will give you on-screen notifications of your choice accompanied by a vibration. You can be notified of a phone call, text message, email and much more like social networks.

The SmartWatch 2 can also be used as a sort of remote control, allowing you do things like to pause music, change tracks or even remotely take a photo.

You can install all kind of apps from Sony and third-party developers from the Google Play store. There are hundreds to choose from with everything from clock faces, games, fitness apps and more.

A welcome design change is that it now charges via a regular microUSB port which sits on the side under a flap. On average we got between four and five days of battery life from the watch.

At £149 the Sony SmartWatch 2 is a good value for money smart watch. It improves on the original version in key areas such as design, battery life and showing the time. With plenty of apps to download and use, there's lots of functionality too.