Apple Watch 2 - Experiences

martint235

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Apr 13, 2016
272
654
So I've had a Fitbit Surge which I sold because I had to keep taking it off to charge (as it tracked my sleep during the night)
I then got an AW1 which I thought was kind of cool and I coped with the charging aspect of it (charged it next to my bed) but in the end sold it as I didn't feel I was getting too much benefit from it.
And now I'm thinking of an AW2 because there are a couple of important differences for me: GPS - I cycle commute 25 miles a day and at weekends I'm often out riding 100 - 200 miles a day; water proof - I also swim quite a lot. So the questions:

  • Apple state a battery life of 18 hours, how much is this reduced by using GPS (a 200 mile bike ride will take, including food stops etc, around 15 hours) so an 18 hour battery life is borderline.
  • I currently have a Kahuna sports watch for sea swimming and it gets fairly salted up but still works. Anyone got experience of the AW2 swimming in the sea, negative effects or not?
 

Relentless Power

macrumors Nehalem
Jul 12, 2016
33,441
34,509
So I've had a Fitbit Surge which I sold because I had to keep taking it off to charge (as it tracked my sleep during the night)
I then got an AW1 which I thought was kind of cool and I coped with the charging aspect of it (charged it next to my bed) but in the end sold it as I didn't feel I was getting too much benefit from it.
And now I'm thinking of an AW2 because there are a couple of important differences for me: GPS - I cycle commute 25 miles a day and at weekends I'm often out riding 100 - 200 miles a day; water proof - I also swim quite a lot. So the questions:

  • Apple state a battery life of 18 hours, how much is this reduced by using GPS (a 200 mile bike ride will take, including food stops etc, around 15 hours) so an 18 hour battery life is borderline.
  • I currently have a Kahuna sports watch for sea swimming and it gets fairly salted up but still works. Anyone got experience of the AW2 swimming in the sea, negative effects or not?
I don't use the GPS too much on my Apple Watch, so I can't attest to battery statistics.

But I can tell you the Series 2 can be exposed to salt water/ocean, just make sure you thoroughly wash it off when you're through with it. Apple has stated it is safe to use the Series 2 Apple Watch in the ocean, but it is important to rinse it off when you're completed.
 

MacDevil7334

macrumors 65816
Oct 15, 2011
1,289
1,787
Austin TX
I don't use GPS every day on my watch but I have to say I've been really impressed with the battery life on it so far. Wear the watch from roughly 6:30 AM to 10 PM and generally end the day in the 60-70% range. If I have done a workout with GPS (usually lasts 30 mins to an hour), the battery still has around 50-60% charge on it by the time I go to bed. So extrapolate from that what you will. I still charge it every night because the charger is right by my bed anyway. But I'm pretty confident I could make it 2 days on a charge as long as I wasn't doing a crazy amount of working out.
 

ftaok

macrumors 603
Jan 23, 2002
6,201
1,221
East Coast
If you're going to be doing 15 hours of a GPS workout, I doubt the AW would make it to the end of the day. However, there are a few things you could do to help maximize the battery.

1. Bring your iPhone along with you. If the iPhone is connected to the AW, it will use the iPhone's GPS, thus saving precious AW battery power.

2. Get a BT HR monitor (or forgo HR monitoring during workouts). Same deal as above, using a BT HR strap, lightens the load on the AW's battery.

3. During your breaks, charge the AW with an external battery pack. You might have to stop your workout or pause it (I don't know how well the AW handles charging in the middle of a workout). 30 minute lunch break should give you a decent amount of AW charge.

ft
 
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wytwolf

macrumors regular
Apr 23, 2012
161
9
So I've had a Fitbit Surge which I sold because I had to keep taking it off to charge (as it tracked my sleep during the night)
I then got an AW1 which I thought was kind of cool and I coped with the charging aspect of it (charged it next to my bed) but in the end sold it as I didn't feel I was getting too much benefit from it.
And now I'm thinking of an AW2 because there are a couple of important differences for me: GPS - I cycle commute 25 miles a day and at weekends I'm often out riding 100 - 200 miles a day; water proof - I also swim quite a lot. So the questions:

  • Apple state a battery life of 18 hours, how much is this reduced by using GPS (a 200 mile bike ride will take, including food stops etc, around 15 hours) so an 18 hour battery life is borderline.
  • I currently have a Kahuna sports watch for sea swimming and it gets fairly salted up but still works. Anyone got experience of the AW2 swimming in the sea, negative effects or not?
Normal day to day use will give you much more then 18 hours ( about 48 hrs for most people). GPS drains the watch considerably. You mention a 15 hr bike ride, using the GPS and this being borderline to the 18hr time frame. I would advise you to read the following page:

http://www.apple.com/ca/watch/battery.html

Using the built-in GPS of the Apple Watch Series 2 without iPhone, workout time is up to 5 hours. Battery life varies by use, configuration and many other factors; actual results will vary.

If you are going long activities (15 hrs) you may be better off with a Garmin Fenix smartwatch. The Fenix is much bigger and allows for a much bigger battery. The fenix 5 just came out and there have been good deals on Fenix 3's the past few months. If you plan on doing long GPS enabled rides you could probably bring a battery back and top up every few hours during food stops
 

martint235

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Apr 13, 2016
272
654
Normal day to day use will give you much more then 18 hours ( about 48 hrs for most people). GPS drains the watch considerably. You mention a 15 hr bike ride, using the GPS and this being borderline to the 18hr time frame. I would advise you to read the following page:

http://www.apple.com/ca/watch/battery.html

Using the built-in GPS of the Apple Watch Series 2 without iPhone, workout time is up to 5 hours. Battery life varies by use, configuration and many other factors; actual results will vary.

If you are going long activities (15 hrs) you may be better off with a Garmin Fenix smartwatch. The Fenix is much bigger and allows for a much bigger battery. The fenix 5 just came out and there have been good deals on Fenix 3's the past few months. If you plan on doing long GPS enabled rides you could probably bring a battery back and top up every few hours during food stops
Thanks for that. Very helpful. **heads off to look at Garmin watches**
 

wytwolf

macrumors regular
Apr 23, 2012
161
9
Wow that's a serious workout.

Don't you have your phone with you on those long rides? If yes the battery shouldn't be a problem at all
True, it would make more sense to have the apple watch use the GPS in the iphone. Even then I would have a battery pack for the phone as 15hr is a long time to have the gps enabled. Don't forget that the workout app increases the frequency of the heartbeat tracking which will decrease the battery life but I am unsure how much of an impact it will have. Surely it will be less of an impact then the GPS.
 
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martint235

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Apr 13, 2016
272
654
True, it would make more sense to have the apple watch use the GPS in the iphone. Even then I would have a battery pack for the phone as 15hr is a long time to have the gps enabled. Don't forget that the workout app increases the frequency of the heartbeat tracking which will decrease the battery life but I am unsure how much of an impact it will have. Surely it will be less of an impact then the GPS.
I have my phone but I don't have any tracking apps running on it mainly due to battery concerns.

I'm thinking I just won't use the gps on the watch. I do have a separate gps for routing etc so can track my distance that way
 

xDKP

macrumors 65816
Feb 27, 2011
1,497
1,114
Denmark
True, it would make more sense to have the apple watch use the GPS in the iphone. Even then I would have a battery pack for the phone as 15hr is a long time to have the gps enabled. Don't forget that the workout app increases the frequency of the heartbeat tracking which will decrease the battery life but I am unsure how much of an impact it will have. Surely it will be less of an impact then the GPS.
Yeah it's a long trip for any device - be it an Apple Watch or another brand - but might be able to do it. I'm very impressed with mine - even with a 20km run with full gps (no phone) and full brightness and everything it's almost at 50% when I go to bed.
 

worker73

macrumors regular
May 4, 2015
105
42
Do you have some items disabled on your Watch xDKP? I'd like to start using mine for some longer GPS activities. Is there anything special I should do?

That really is great battery life for sure!!! :)
 

Relentless Power

macrumors Nehalem
Jul 12, 2016
33,441
34,509
Do you have some items disabled on your Watch xDKP? I'd like to start using mine for some longer GPS activities. Is there anything special I should do?

That really is great battery life for sure!!! :)
You can Do the following to aid in the battery life:

1.) Reduce Haptic Engine
2.) Reduce screen brightness
3.) Turn Hey Siri Off under General Settings
4.) Disable Raise to Wake
 
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xDKP

macrumors 65816
Feb 27, 2011
1,497
1,114
Denmark
Do you have some items disabled on your Watch xDKP? I'd like to start using mine for some longer GPS activities. Is there anything special I should do?

That really is great battery life for sure!!! :)
Awesome battery yeah, but test it out before disabling any features - it's impressive
 
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BarracksSi

Suspended
Jul 14, 2015
3,902
2,658
I have my phone but I don't have any tracking apps running on it mainly due to battery concerns.
If your phone is along for the ride and connected to the watch (that is, neither device is in Airplane Mode), you don't need to activate any tracking apps on the phone. Starting a workout on the watch will -- or should -- offload the GPS recording task to the phone and take advantage of the phone's bigger battery.

So, an outdoor workout with the watch and phone together would be tracked like this:
Watch: timing, control, HR;
Phone: GPS track

(mostly guessing, but I think this is accurate enough)
 
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