As recently as February I was telling people that I would not be buying an Apple Watch. As sure as Bill Hader’s Lindsey Buckingham cannot resist Keenan Thompson’s Diondre Cole, I own an Apple Watch. Fan points earned.
The feature that swayed me was the taptic touch, where the watch touches your wrist through some electromagnetic magic. The iPhone 6 Plus is so large that I often miss the vibration of a notification while the phone is in my pocket, and surely do not hear the sound. I had missed several messages from my wife while driving home, so I figured the watch may resolve this issue. Apple created the problem and I am solving it by buying more of their products.
The first weekend has been fantastic. Battery life is fine. One day. Unless you are working out two hours a day, I do not think that you will have to charge it more than at night. This opinion is applicable to the 42mm Apple Watch Sport. The 38mm watch has a smaller battery so your usage duration will vary.
The weight is nice. The sport band feels nicer that I expected. I worked out to see if I would get a rash from sweat under the band and I did not. The band has one small piece of metal, a pin, that extends slightly out of the band. This makes for a nice experience when using the band on a metal laptop.
The Apple Watch is delightful. It taps me as I am following navigation directions to let me know if I need to turn left or right. This is a nice alternative to Siri talking to you, and is very nice if someone in the car talks over Siri’s directions. The watch taps me when I get a message or a tweet. When I raise the watch to look at it, Mickey Mouse is tapping his foot every second. Luckily this does not tap the wrist.
The watch records how often I stand and entices me to stand if I have been sitting for too long. The watch records my calories burned and my heart rate every ten minutes. The watch tracks my exercises. I apparently do not exercise strenuously enough as my thirty-two minute workout only accounted for six minutes of exercise. The watch could do a better job of letting me know I was failing to meet its expectations, but I will see if I can come to common ground with it today.
The watch lets me quickly see what Dark Sky is predicting for the weather. The watch lets me access codes to enter buildings. The watch lets me turn on and off my Hue lights.
All from my wrist.
The apps are too slow. This is a very version one product, akin to the first iPad. The watch is delightful none the less.
The watch lets me raise my wrist to pause a movie on Apple TV. Be careful, if you leave the Remote app running and decide to cross your arms, you might find an inadvertent touch from the underside of your other arm rewinding the movie in hyper speed. You can resolve this by pressing the digital crown to return to the clock after using the remote app. Double press the digital crown to return to the previous app.
The digital crown is stiffer than I expected and I believe is fooling me into thinking it is harder to turn at times. I think the visual clues as well as taptic feedback allow Apple into fooling me that I came to the end of a physical list, while the crown is actually still turning normally. Crazy. Delightful. Magic.
I used Apple Pay to pay for lunch at Panera Bread. Two taps on the Contacts button (that’s the button below the digital crown) and I had activated Apple Pay. When the cashier gave me the total, I moved the watch to the reader and the watch emitted a simple “Ping!” sound of delight and the payment was made. The cashier said he had not seen this done before, and wants to get a watch for himself.
I wandered around the grocery store buying items we needed, checking them off one by one in the Wunderlist app. Just a tap on the watch. Next item. I didn’t have to keep pulling my phone out of my pocket or putting it back in to heft heavier items into the cart.
When did my phone become a nuisance?
The space gray aluminum materials are nice. Feel nice. Not sure how long it will hold up, but it looks nice for now.
My heart rate. It’s 65 right now. It was 88 a minute ago. I am doing better than I thought I would be. All of this data goes into my Health app. I am going to share it with my doctor. This all feels early and simple while feeling futuristic and eye opening. Will my niece wear a watch that detects a health issue months or years before it would present itself?
The future is here. This is 1984, 2001, and 2007 all over again. 2022 is going to be incredible, but for now, my Apple Watch has reminded me that I have some chores to finish.