Thursday, July 30, 2015

Apple Watch Review

For my 47th birthday, Chris convinced me I needed an Apple Watch.  He dragged me to the Apple Store and had me try on a watch and I begrudingly went through the tutorial.  By the end of the demo, I was pretty enamored and  acquiesced to the purchase.  Chris had his own motives for pushing the watch.  Let's just say, Father's Day was right around the corner.

I've had my watch for more than a month and have had plenty of time to explore its features and to get familiar with using it.  As with most everything with Apple, the  Apple Watch is not just a watch.  It really is a little computer you wear on your wrist which contains watch features.

The App I use the most, and has actually become a near obsession, is the activity tracker.  The activity tracker is a fitness feature which tracks your daily exercise, calories, and the number hours you stand up and engage in some kind of movement for at least 1 minute (a terrific element for those in fairly sedentary jobs).  In the 6 weeks I've had my watch, I've met or exceeded my three activity goals all but 9 days.  In the first two weeks, I was so caught up in meeting my goals, I would find myself running up and down the stairs at 10 pm just to get in those last few calories.  Thankfully, I started to relax a bit when I realized most days I exceed my goals, so it is quite all right to end a day here and there below target.  The main benefit is the new motivation to move and I'm seeing real results.



This is my activity calendar for July.  The target reflects three goals: red for calories, green for exercise, and blue for standing and moving for at least one minute each hour of the day.  Every goal is customizable and at the end of the week, iWatch will offer a suggested goal adjustment.




The second reason I've come to love my Watch is I am untethered from my phone.  I can receive my text messages and phone calls on my  Apple Watch and so my phone usually sits on a counter rather than in my hand all day. Which has eliminated many hours of mindless web and Facebook browsing on my phone.  Answering texts on my Watch is not always the best option as there are only a few key words or phrases, as well as the full gambit of emoticons, one can choose from for responding, but at least I can discern which texts need only a quick, abbreviated response, and which need more of a thought out longer response.


The Apple Watch is comfortable and I'm able to exercise, garden (I wear gloves which cover and protect the face and band), and do housework while wearing it.  It is water resistant to 10 meters, but I haven't tested that feature.  I own the least expensive Apple Watch Sport with an aluminum case, Ion X glass screen, and black sport band.  I intend to purchase a dressier band fairly soon. I'm just waiting to see some more variety before choosing.  Chris owns the straight up Apple Watch with the larger face, stainless steel case, Sapphire glass screen, and a sport band.  I have managed to scratch the face of my watch just a tad, but a disappointment, nevertheless.  Chris' has yet to scratch the Sapphire face of his and we anticipate his will continue to hold up, damage free.

What you can do with an Apple Watch: track activity, heart rate, and exercise;  receive text messages; respond to text messages with pre-set keywords or emoji;  make and answer phone calls; communicate via touch with other Apple Watch owners in your group;  receive notifications via Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.; check weather; check email;  control music;  listen to music via bluetooth; browse photos; see time, date, stocks, etc.

What you can not do with an Apple Watch: write longer responses to text messages beyond the set keywords, phrases, and emoji; post to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.; browse Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.; browse the internet, respond to email; take photos


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