Don’t Call It An “iWatch”
I no longer think about my Apple Watch, and that’s the genius of its design. But does it live up to the hype?
This June I went all-in with wearables and gave the Apple Watch a try. Since then I’ve fielded as many questions from strangers about it than my iPhone, back in 2007.
Actually, if anyone from Apple is reading; I’m pretty sure I sold a few, little something for the effort? In a year full of cool new devices, Apple Watch is my favorite.
I like my Apple Watch, it’s the first wearable I feel compelled to… um, wear, and all the time. It’s light, modern, and swappable bands keep it fresh and right for every occasion: work, working out, out on the town, a band, a style for it all.
My Top 5 Uses
Aside from telling the time (duh!) here’s how Apple Watch is now integrated into my life:
On time, with a haptic little nudge of reminders and calendar alerts, Apple Watch keeps me ahead of my schedule.
Healthy, Apple Watch tracks footsteps, heart beats, calories as I move through my day. It nudges me after too much sitting (the new smoking) and actively tracks my workouts, except in the pool, although some have taken the plunge
Politely Informed, I check text messages, game scores (go Stanford!) without being rude, sneaking a quick glance, avoiding a glare from my wife, across the dinner table.
Calls, driving, cycling, whatever, I take calls without missing a beat, the speaker is clear and even better with a bluetooth headset. Also with a bluetooth headset, my Apple Watch is a stand-alone music source for playlists, no iPhone required.
Payments, I’ve tried many and this is the best; double-click the side button, quick, easy, more secure than plastic, done. Apple Pay is accepted by most of my usual spots, here’s a list of major stores with smaller shops covered by the new Square NFC/chip reader.
Uber, order a car from the Apple Watch, very James Bond.
Directions, follow guided turn-by-turn directions, without your nose in the phone like a tourist.
OPPORTUNITY FOR IMPROVEMENT
As I said, Apple Watch is a strong first version and these are just #firstworldproblems.
Longer Battery life, for a typical day, it’s fine, using about 50% battery after 10 hrs. For long hikes and heavy usage it lasts just 6 hours, while not great, is still longer than my Garmin. Also, I can’t track sleep if it must be charged every evening. Full disclosure, two or three times, the battery didn’t make it past 3PM, no warning, bu-bye.
No GPS, for accurate GPS, you still need to take along your iPhone, which is redundant. awk. ward.
Not Guaranteed Waterproof, I want to track distance swam and until I have a guarantee, this Apple Watch is not getting wet.
Seriously, I feel like the guy on a plane next to Louis C.K., complaining about weak WiFi, really?! we’ve conquered flight and he’s complaining because he can’t check Facebook?! And poor me, my super watch isn’t waterproof with GPS and a 5 day battery life - extraordinary is the new ordinary.
This first gen Apple Watch is just the beginning, Apple is committed to wearables and making technology more seamless, organic. Future iterations should support more untethered use cases, like GPS for cycling and built in camera for facetime, while moving towards even integrated with the iPhone and other devices, like direct connection to my Mac/iPad. Someday, in the future, the Apple Watch may simply contain the entire OS, something like Her, without the safety pin.
The Apple Watch is an awesome product. If you’re on the fence, go for it! You won’t regret it. The first gen iPhone sold 5 million in the first year; compared to the iPhone 6/s which sold 232 million in the most recent four quarters. Sure there are some things like battery life and GPS which could be better, but don’t be afraid to take the plunge; not literally, until Apple confirms it’s waterproof.