1wk observations from a Gen Xer.

Discussion in 'Apple Watch' started by Chupa Chupa, May 10, 2015.

  1. Chupa Chupa macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

    Jul 16, 2002
    My 38mm SG BSB AW arrived last Monday. A few observations as a Gen Xer. As an 80's kid watches have always been important to me. Probably peaked in the mid 80s when you had to have the current Swatch. Yeah, that got old after a couple years. I think I had a total of 3 Swatch. I wish I knew were there were because they are worth considerably more now than I paid for them then. Before then digital watches were the thing to have. Going into college the focus was on nice dress watches -- though hard for me to compete with my NYC friends from mega-wealthy families.

    1. Aesthetically, I'm not ashamed to have it on my wrist. "Gray" on black looks nice and unassuming.

    2. However it's a little off putting that it's just a big blank black slab unless I raise my arm in a certain way, at a certain speed. It takes the stealthiness of a time check away. Hopefully Apple will figure out a way to have the watch face always-on without a huge hit to the battery.

    3. Conceptually, other than #2, I love this watch. It's awesome getting texts or paying for something w/o dragging out my phone. One of the chief reasons I was so interested in AW. It's a time piece plus a wrist info center. And I absolutely love dictating a text.

    4. But functionally, the OS is half-baked, and slow. Glances increasingly gets tedious as more are added. No way to delete Apple's apps, which I resent w/ the iPhone and iPad, but detest on the AW because space is so much more a premium here. The "friends" thing is an interesting concept, but I just use Siri: "send a text to Amy." I would much rather the friends wheel be an app wheel with my top 10 apps on it. The app cluster is a bit convoluted and not always easy to target the app you want on the 38mm.

    5. The apps themselves are slow to load and often have little redeeming value. Ironically, they are also either too simplistic (Starbucks for example) or too detailed (Fidelity).

    6. As a fitness watch, AW is a dud. OK, so maybe not the watch but Apple's Fitness app. It looks like it was a 2nd thought app that they assigned to an intern. I did a few test runs w/ AW, my Garmin 620 w/ HRM, and iSmoothRun on my iPhone. The common data (pace, time) was similar. The problem the detail of the data from the Apple running app is too minimal to be useful. Apple needs to fully open up the HRM to 3rd parties like iSmoothRun for AW to be useful. I won't be running w/ it anymore.

    7. The other issue I have with the fitness function is that it's "dumb," in that it can'd differentiate a moderate 5K walk with a spirited 5K run. Exercise is exercise to the AW. There is no quality of exercise level reported like in a Garmin. AW is just spitting out "garbage" data, which is fine as a motivator to get one started with physical activity, but once you bump to a higher level it's useless.

    I'm happy with my purchase. 100% worth $350, and I look forward to the coming tweaks and improvements. And also to Gen 2. It's most definitely a watch worn for convenience -- a data portal worn on the wrist. Any other way Apple tries to marketing IMHO is not doing the AW any favors, but rather setting up unrealistic expectations.
  2. mattopotamus macrumors G5


    Jun 12, 2012
    good post chalupa batman :p

    I really hope they give us the ability to at least hide the stock apps. I use virtually no apps. I wonder if it feels like a "black slap" b.c that is literally what you got, SG with black sport band. I have the SS with classic band and it looks just as good when the display is off.
  3. Chupa Chupa thread starter macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

    Jul 16, 2002
    No, I'm just use to being able to do an arm stretch in a meeting and doing a side peek at my watch. I can't do that w/ AW. Also the blankness kinda bugs me because it makes the watch feel more like an appliance that you put in sleep mode than something that is at least marketed as jewelry. I'd feed this way if I owned any version of AW b/c it's the blank face that I'm not loving.

    But I enjoy the functionality of the AW enough that I live with it. The blank face isn't a deal breaker, just something I hope might be replaced by an always live face down the road as technology progresses.
  4. mattopotamus macrumors G5


    Jun 12, 2012
    That has been a big adjustment for me coming from the pebble. You really cannot just glance down you have to make a noticeable arm turn. I wish there was a setting to leave the display on at all times. I am ending the day with easily over 50%
  5. adammull macrumors 6502a


    Jun 14, 2009
    #4 - I don't even use glances. They're really meaningless at this point, especially third party ones.
  6. bunnicula macrumors 68040


    Jul 23, 2008
    If I don't want to raise my arm in an obvious fashion, I just tap the screen to check the time.

    It's not a perfect solution, but I'm thinking there will be software solutions that'll give us other ways to discreetly power on the screen down the road.
  7. cardfan macrumors 65816

    Mar 23, 2012
    As a fellow gen xer, I feel about the same. The health/fitness stuff I turned off. It's garbage IMO. And something Apple doesn't need to be advertising just yet. It's unfortunate given the Sport name (although I got the SS). It kinda feels like passport, something a majority of users don't use.

    I don't use apple pay. Not yet. Maybe in the future. But it's way more trouble than it's worth right now. So that future is useless to me.

    The screen not being always on bugs me too. And when it is on, it's not on long enough. This has to change for future gens.

    Siri shows me the potential of what it can be. But it doesn't work half the time. Once it is on board the watch and works closer to 100%, then great. But again, future gen.

    Speaker needs to be on for certain things. This bugs me a bit too.

    Let's be able to configure side buttons. I don't need the friends thing when Siri does much better. I don't care about the doodles or icons much.

    Very few third party apps worth it. I like Dark Sky. And calcbot. That's about it. Needs a native reminders app.

    Very few native apps need to be opened if you use complications on modular face. I use siri to set alarms or timers. Stocks is good in complication.

    Maps are worthless. Turned off.

    That all said, I think the Watch is worth 350-400. I only have the SS since I was able to subsidize it 500 with the sale of the sport (and wife's SS) that arrived later. But I would only buy the Sport in the future and use a leather loop mostly. I don't believe the SS looks much more impressive to be honest or is worth the extra.

    It's still more than a regular watch. Discreet notifications ftw. You don't miss any. Phone calls, reminders, calendar, texts, email, etc. If people can't understand this, then oh well. But also being able to do timers, alarms, and all the little things just add up. Again, it's much more than a reg watch. And that's with half of the things I've turned off, removed, etc.

    I'm surprised Apple has screwed up their marketing so much. They have the right stuff on their website with those tutorial videos. Convert those to tv commercials. Make it simple stupid as general users need a lot of help on this.
  8. Esoom macrumors 6502


    Apr 30, 2010
    Pebble transitioned here too, just got AW Friday, am thinking a discrete tap to wake it up will work...
  9. foxkoneko macrumors 6502

    Sep 5, 2011
    I'm pretty annoyed with unable to hide or remove most of the defaults apps. I only need like 5 there #
    The rest just get in the frikin way #
  10. BlueMoon63 macrumors 68020

    Mar 30, 2015
    I personally don't need the screen on all the time but I do agree with you and completely understand. In a meeting my hands would be on my lap and touch the screen and then stretch. If I was writing, my hands would be close together and I would just touch the screen. During a presentation I would lean back with my hands folded and my finger would just touch the screen.

    Just my ideas that I do even with a regular watch but adding a touch. #

    I could see a need for a light digital clock in the corner for those that want that feature. I would never want a jelly fish moving around all the time and people constantly staring at my watch in meetings. #
  11. gorkt macrumors 6502a


    Sep 15, 2007
    I am also a genXer.

    As far as discreetly looking a the watch, just tap the face with your finger. I don't really see the big deal. I don't really use the glances and I didn't add any third party glances except for things.

    I actually like the fitness portion of the watch. I agree that it's not very detailed, and I don't like the workout app at all, but I do like the regular three circle design because I find it motivating on a day to day basis for taking that extra walk in the evenings to make my circles complete. Oddly, I thought I would hate the stand feature, but it turns out that I like it, but for unexpected reasons. Once I stand up, I remember to get a glass of water, change the laundry, etc....whatever else I have been putting off.

    For running, I have never worn a real fitness watch like a Garmin, so I don't know the difference. I did wear an MS band, and this is superior to that. Since I bring my phone, I use Runkeeper in conjunction with the workout app on the watch so I get detailed running routes.

    I love using Siri for texts and reminders, but I wish it worked better when there is surrounding noise. That is when it is hit or miss.

    I wholeheartedly agree that third party apps are very sketchy right now. Until the apps are native to the watch, I am afraid it is going to be this way.

    I find that I actually am liking it more and more as I wear it and have tweaked the apps and watch faces the way I like them, and understand the limitations and abilities of the watch.
  12. Kavier macrumors 6502a


    Feb 1, 2010
    Raleigh, NC
    I like this idea!
  13. Dhonk macrumors member

    Mar 2, 2015
    Not sure I get the hate of the stock app. It's my most used app on the iPhone, and I wish it was available for the iPad. Since social security won't be there for those of us born in the 80s (or later), investing is our most pressing concern (or it should be).
  14. flur macrumors 68020


    Nov 12, 2012
    The problem with the stock app is that if you use it, it's great, but if you don't, you shouldn't have to have it in your face all the time. Same as any app. The only difference is that the audience for the stock app is smaller.

    Also, FWIW, long term investment is best for preparing for retirement, and if you're watching a stock on a daily or more-than-daily basis, you're making yourself crazy for no reason. Stock watching is for day traders and others who play the market, which is a totally different thing from ensuring a good financial future.
  15. Biff... macrumors 6502a


    Jun 16, 2010
    Sherman Oaks, CA.
    Great post OP. I am also a gen xer. The swatches were one of the first time pieces I invested in, along with a pair of Ray Bans lol!! I miss the 80's.

    Looking forward to getting my SG sport
  16. Armen macrumors 604


    Apr 30, 2013
    I'd like to see a always on watch face if Apple could pull it off without a major hit to battery life.

    The OS definitely needs updates and tweaks but it's not a bad start. Glances take time to load so I avoid them but it's better than seeing errors or crashes.

    More watch faces and complications would be nice also.

    I'm. Gen Xer like yourself. I have a 1988 August color wheel Swatch in my safe haha.
  17. alia macrumors 6502a


    Apr 2, 2003
    Orlando, FL
    I'm able to get my watch to turn on with a discrete twist of my wrist inward as it's stretched down. Looks like I'm stretching my arm to others.
  18. eagleglen macrumors 65816


    Oct 2, 2009
    Phoenix, AZ
    What other data are you looking for? Its gives you your pace and average heart beat rate, which are the typical metrics for intensity during a walk or run.
  19. TEBnewyork macrumors regular

    Jun 13, 2009
    Why don't you reorder glances and put the ones you don't care about at the end of the list. Then you never have to swipe over to them.
  20. Chupa Chupa thread starter macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

    Jul 16, 2002
    Right, the problem is it's still not stealth b/c the screen lights someone is bound to notice. Maybe Apple could get the backlight to be super dim but not sleep for a specified set time.

    Any good running app should display while running, and in the historical summary log,

    1) Total time
    2) Active time
    3) Cadence (incl. by splits and avg)
    4) Distance
    5) Real Time Pace (incl. by splits and avg)
    6) Avg. Speed
    7) Climb, Descent, Difference b/t two, and at what point of the run
    8) (if HRM is used) HR mapped by point of the run, not just an average

    These are stats that every basic iOS running app has had for a few generations. There is nothing "exotic" here or beyond the capability of the iPhone or AW. And it's key info one needs to compare runs and gauge quality of run and training. As I said, the Apple running app is very stripped down and doesn't take advantage of any of the iPhone or AW's capabilities. Very odd since Apple wants to compete against other sport watches.
  21. chrise2 macrumors 6502

    Sep 17, 2012
    I really enjoy the watch. I only use 1 glance, now playing. Everything else is disabled. For the exercise app, its nothing that can't be fixed with software updates. Also, the data is fed into HealthKit, so you could use other running apps.

    As someone who doesn't work out on a regular basis, the included stuff is great for me. The rings are basic and do a good job of motivating me to get off my butt. I just get bummed when I do a lot of physical activity while not wearing the watch and don't get credit for it. I hauled a bunch of gravel working on my back patio. It was back breaking work that took hours. But I didn't want to get my watch all banged up so I left it off. AW thought I was lazy that day because when I was done I put my watch back on and didn't get up from the couch for the rest of the day! :)
  22. extricated macrumors 6502


    Jul 14, 2011
    Good observations! I think they're spot on.
    I could have written a similar piece myself, because I have many of the same thoughts as you.
    Even though I love my watch, I see a lot of room for improvement with apps. Many are slow-loading and a lot of developers just don't understand how to leverage the watch UI in a useful way.

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