Apple Watch Thoughts After a Full Year

Discussion in 'Apple Watch' started by The Doctor11, Apr 22, 2016.

  1. The Doctor11, Apr 22, 2016
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2016

    The Doctor11 macrumors 603

    The Doctor11

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2013
    Location:
    New York
    #1
    We've had our watches for an entire year. Amazing really, feels like I just got it. After one year I feel there is a lot to be desired and improved upon, but I'm really happy with my watch. Here are my thoughts after a year with it. I'm curious of what you guys have to say about it. You can also read the below text in Apple News where its a little prettier :). If video is more of your thing you can watch it here

    TLDR: I use Utility Modular and simple for my watch face, I refuse to use anything that doesn't have complications. Customizing the watch faces is important to me really enjoy how customizable it is, seconds on the digital watch faces is something I desire. App screen sucks, I avoid going there. Notifications are awesome on the watch. Love glances. Don't use animated emojis even thought I think they're cool. I want my friends button to do something else, digital touch is fun to screw around with but not practical. Time travel is great for looking ahead at the hourly forecast. Fitness tracking and workouts are my favorite part of the watch, really wish it supported swim workouts. Watch is slow. I wish the alarm was louder. Love the watch hardware and sport bands. Overall I really like my watch and wouldn't go a day without it.

    ----------------

    First, let's start off with the watch faces. One of the best things about Apple Watch is the watch faces, and I switch between Utility, Modular, and Simple. I never use Astronomy or Time-lapse despite how much I want to and how much I like those. I simply refuse to use a watch face of any kind that doesn't show the weather on it, that's how much I love the weather complication. There is something really great about walking outside and just lifting your wrist to find out the temperature. So with the lack of complications on the astronomy and time lapse watch face I'll just have to go without using those, my weather complication is just more important. My next favorite watch complication is the activity rings, those can be really motivating, every time I lift my wrist I just have the desire to fill up those rings.

    As I said before I'll switch between three watch faces, and I really like doing that, it's just kinda nice to switch it up sometimes. I really love the way the Utility and Simple look, and I love watching that red second hand move across the watch face. I also think it is important to mention that that second hand color can be changed to the color of your choosing which is pretty cool, for me that is red. And the watch faces themselves are customizable, I have them pretty much how I want them, though, only on rare occasion do I just decide you know what I'm gonna make this watch face look a little different today but I have done that and when I do I really appreciate being able to change it. Modular I like, but I really can't say why I like it, I just kinda do. I would say that I like having some bonus complications but I don't know if that's necessarily true because I usually leave a spot open on Utility and Simple, but I do use all 5 slots on Modular. Maybe I like the bigger complications, but I honestly can't say, I just like it. I do however wish I could have seconds displayed on the watch face. This is one of the most accurate watches in the world so the fact that I can't have seconds on it is really kinda disappointing and confusing.

    Apps, well first off with apps I think we need to start with the app screen. The app screen, you may find yourself wanting to call it the home screen through force of habit from your iPhone, but once I started using the Apple Watch for a while I really started to feel that it's pretty far from anything with home in the name. That's why I call it the app screen, I have gone days before where I never go to the app screen. The app screen does look cool but functionally is pretty bad. Trying to rearrange apps on the app screen just isn't a thing that happens. Even with the assistance of the watch app on iPhone moving the apps around is so hard to do. One day I had to purge every single third party app from my watch because in moving an app I dropped it and it messed up the order of all my other apps. Trying to fix it was just a ridiculous nightmare. Moving apps does not work as expected. Trying to move an app is like trying to organize drops of water in an 8-ounce glass. One you move an app that hole is just filled in with other apps screwing up the order of those apps as well. Complete nightmare.

    Luckily I can get by using the app screen at a minimum. Weather and activity are by far the apps I use the most and I get to those by tapping on the watch face complications. Alarms I only open once a day before bed, workouts I use pretty often but I'm not to bothered by opening that, if I don't need to set a goal for the workout I just have Siri start the workout. When I need a timer, I just have Siri set the timer and then I put the timer complication on my watch face, calendar I get to from by tapping it on the watch face or the glance, ESPN has a pretty cool third party app but I only open that from the glance. And that's pretty much it. The only other time I use apps is when I'm building my own apps, not because I feel I need a certain thing on my watch, but because I want to get that learning experience from building my own watch app. And at one point I found a really cool game called The Martian, probably the best watch app I've used and I only opened it from the glance.

    Notifications are also really nice to have on the watch. It's really great to be able to see all your notifications on the wrist and be able to quickly reply or dismiss things on your wrist. Notifications on the watch are one of the best things about Apple Watch.

    Glances are pretty cool, I actually really like glances. The settings glance is kinda like the control center of the watch. The phone ping this is extremely helpful for finding my phone or startling my dog, but I find that really helpful and cool. The airplay icon that was added next to it in watchOS 2 I still have not found use for. It's always grayed out so you can't actually use it, I assume that it would AirPlay audio from my phone to an AppleTV but even with audio playing on my phone I can't get it to do anything. The Heart Rate Glance is the really cool, I really like swiping up to it to see what my heart rate was the last time it was taken it which is never longer than 10 minutes ago, and it's really cool to see my current heart rate. Love having the heart rate glance. The weather glance is the second one in my list of glances and I really only use it as an extension of my weather complication on the watch face. Very handy and in some ways better than the actual watch weather app. I also have the activity rings in my list of glances, but I don't find myself swiping up for it, I just kinda like seeing it as I swipe through the list for other things. The ESPN glance is something I use a lot and really like having, it's great for finding out when games are and what the score is during the game. Now playing is really cool for changing the volume of my phone and though it will let you pause or skip ahead in a podcast I mostly use it for changing the volume. Calendar is pretty nice when you have multiple events in one day. And lastly, I have world clock, which I don't really use but its kinda cool to look at I guess. The only thing I want from glances is the ability to scroll through them using the digital crown, I much rather use the digital crown to scroll through stuff them swipe on the screen, and I think I'd be able to get from one end to the other a lot faster, of course, the only problem here would be that the now playing glance uses the digital crown to change the volume, I don't think this would really be much of a problem, though, if your already scrolling through you would just keep going and if you're on the glance I think it's pretty obvious that the digital crown can't be used to change the volume and scroll so you have to swipe that away. That would be really cool and I really hope to see that come to watchOS in the near future.

    Animated emoji's are really cool and I used them a lot the first few days but now I can't even recall the last time I sent an animated emoji. And honestly, I don't really know why, I send messages from my watch all the time, more often than not I use the automated messages for the default messages I have entered but I just don't click that animated emoji button. I use emoji's on my phone all the time so why don't I use them on the watch? I guess now that I know this about myself I'm gonna try to use them more ,but after a year with the Apple Watch, I can say that I found I simply don't use animated emoji's.

    The friends button is kind of interesting. Pressing it pulls up a list of friends that you have created, and for each of those friends you can start a call, send a message, or a digital touch if they have an Apple Watch. And what I found is I don't start calls from either my phone or my watch so that button I don't use, I've never started a message from my watch, if I'm sending a message from my watch its always to reply to a notification, and digital touch is really only a thing you use if both you and your friends who have watches are bored. It's not a thing that seems to have revolutionized my communication. Its kinda cool, I can't really draw though so that's definitely not a motive for me to use it. And other than that taps are a not so good way to communicate because it just is, I'm not setting up Morse code cheat sheets with my friends. And legit I find that my friends and I only use the heart rate glance because we find that feeling a heart rate, much like the heart rate glance is kinda cool. Honestly, I really wish the friends button could do something else, like maybe open the workout app or have different functionality altogether.

    Time travel is a feature I find myself using frequently to see the hourly forecast but that's pretty much it.

    Fitness tracking is one of the main reasons I got a watch and the biggest reason for why I love my Apple Watch. Workouts on the watch are awesome, I love seeing how far I've gone and how many calories I've burned. Its also really nice to see a halfway point message when you're trying to reach a goal. At the end of the workout, I find it really nice to see a summary of everything that I did including average heart rate total distance and how many calories I've burned along with my updated activity rings shown to me. I also love that it counts my steps weather I'm doing a workout or not, figures out how far I'm walking/running and it sends all my heath data to the iPhone health app for better viewing. One of my favorite things about all of this is receiving a notification on Monday morning that summarizes my whole week with a total for how many steps for the entire week, which I just find really cool. And one of the very best parts of the watch is the stand goal. For stand goal, you have to stand up and move around for at least one minute every hour for at least 12 hours of the day. I'd love to reach 24 hours of stand one day, I'm sure other people have done it but that's besides the point. Before having an Apple Watch I would get stuck sitting in one stop for hours at a time. I'd forget how much time is passing by so caught up in what I'm doing, this most often happens when I'm at my desk programming or editing a video. With stand goal I'm reminded to stand up for a minute, take a walk, get a glass of water, and I love that. I do really hope that the next watch supports swim workouts, though, as a swimmer I swim a lot. A lot. And I lose so much activity credit on my watch. It hurts so bad seeing that my watch doesn't think I've done 30 minutes of exercise when I know that I swam for 3 hours straight but my watch wasn't there to see it. I would love for my watch to track how many yards I swim, average pace, calories, and average heart rate. I also think it'd be really cool if it had a race mode where it wouldn't start tracking until you leave the starting block and it would stop after you reach the wall on the distance you have selected. This would be so cool, because then you could get your race time without messing around with stopwatches or touch pads. And you would have your race data saved to your activity app and health app which would be really cool.

    The watch itself needs to get a lot faster. The fact that thing like alarms can take a few seconds to open is ridiculous. And it's not just alarms, and it's not alarms either. I feel like all apps at times just take forever to open or do something. But not always, its kind of interesting. Sometimes the workout apps will open right up and sometimes its back to the loading circle. So I feel like the whole watch can benefit from being faster but the watch is usable as is.

    I do however love the watch hardware, I love the way it looks, and I love the way it feels. Right now I own 3 bands, a black sport band, red sport band, and third party black milanese loop. And I switch between all of them often because I really like the way they all look and feel. The sport bands themselves are really comfortable and I really like the way it feels. And I really like the third party milanese loop more on that coming in the next week. Often times the watch is so light I don't feel it on my wrist at all, and this is one of the reasons that I don't think I'd ever want to get a Stainless Steal. I really love the way it charges, all I have to do is drop it on the magsafe charger and it charges wirelessly. And when it's on its side charging it goes into nightstand mode which I really like. This is what I use as my alarm clock and it's really nice. Although I feel like the alarm needs to be a lot louder on the watch, even at the maximum settings it's been too quiet for me. I did buy a little dock for my watch which holds it into position for night stand mode, I like this because, without it, my unconscious self would just push the watch around the nightstand to turn it off.

    Overall I still really like the watch one year later, and I would never even think of not wearing it for a day. I highly recommend the Apple Watch to anyone who wants good activity tracking, notifications on your wrist, or even just a really cool watch.
     
  2. swarlos macrumors 6502

    swarlos

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2015
    #2
    TL;DR LOL will later though. I definitely agree about the watch faces! I used the Utility face for almost a whole year before changing it up.

    I've looked up the best Android Wear watch faces on google and they were awful! I know I've heard some complaints about the Watch not having third party faces but I love the watch faces we already have and definitely wouldn't want the crap that Android Wear has.
     
  3. T'hain Esh Kelch macrumors 601

    T'hain Esh Kelch

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2001
    Location:
    Denmark
    #3
    Arstechica.com just posted a long article on this exact topic. And for them speed was also the main issue.

    It actually made me want an Apple Watch now, but Ill wait a couple revisions because of A. Speed. And B. Siri. The latter would be my main thing I think, and Ars wrote that she was just too unreliable at the moment.
     
  4. Julien macrumors G3

    Julien

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2007
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #4
    Definitely TLDR and at the rate I read it would not be applicable anyway since I would be past my 2ed full year.:eek:
     
  5. Newtons Apple macrumors Pentium

    Newtons Apple

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2014
    Location:
    Jacksonville, Florida
  6. Asthmatic Kitty macrumors member

    Asthmatic Kitty

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2014
    #6
    Enjoyed reading that, thanks. I'm debating between buying a mechanical watch or Apple Watch 2, and it's good to hear about the little things that people enjoy about the AW.

    (Ignore the 'TL;DR!' crowd, lots of us appreciate you going in depth!)
     
  7. latndude macrumors member

    latndude

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2012
    Location:
    Fort Myers,FL
    #7
    Speed and more watch faces , and more speed , other than that the Watch is a great addition to the phone, one more thing ,GPS would be great to track outside runs .If NIKE had that incorporated to their watch I don't see why this should be a problem .
     
  8. tom504 macrumors regular

    tom504

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2009
    #8
    Thanks for the review. I am probably in the minority but it does not bother me that it takes a few seconds for a data refresh on a lot of the apps. The ones that are not well developed are the ones that bother me, like Flipboard, terrible. Not sure why they thought it was a good idea to allow apps to run on the phone instead of directly on the watch.
    At least they are fixing that.
     
  9. The Doctor11 thread starter macrumors 603

    The Doctor11

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2013
    Location:
    New York
    #9
    TLDR has been added! Yay!
     
  10. GrumpyMom macrumors 601

    GrumpyMom

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2014
    Location:
    Rinoriducruin
    #10
    Goodness I must be among the Cliffs Notes crowd! I can just see some of you in a Literature class and the teacher assigns "War and Peace" and out swells a roar of TLDR. :p

    I enjoyed your post. I agree with most of your observations and the ones I didn't agree with were simply because I hadn't thought to use my watch on the way you did, and now I have some ideas to try. I don't use ESPN but I did have CNN pushing me news for awhile. I turned it off but will probably turn it back on because I regret missing some breaking news items.

    I keep hearing how the Apple Watch isn't a very good fitness watch like Fitbit, but I lost twenty pounds and am back in bikini shape since keeping track of my calories and meeting my calorie goals and stand goals each week. If that's not a testament to effectiveness as a fitness device, I don't know what is. :D
     
  11. swarlos macrumors 6502

    swarlos

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2015
    #11
    LOL his post just had the unfortunate timing of showing up while I was at dinner. But I love reading!

    Have read all the Song of Ice and Fire books aka Game of Thrones. Plus another series The Sword of Truth that was 11 books long each over 800 pages.
     
  12. PracticalMac macrumors 68030

    PracticalMac

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2009
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    #12
    What little I saw of it, yes, its amazing.

    But the deal breaker is no BloodOxy ability.
    The special purpose finger types are not as consistently accurate as people assume it is, so even if AW is correct more than 92% of time that is more than enough for me.
     
  13. sean000 macrumors 6502a

    sean000

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2015
    Location:
    Bellingham, WA
    #13
    Interesting comment about the faces. I usually switch faces once a day or every other day. During business hours I tend to keep a high-information face with complications up. Modular is the most useful, but I also use Simple a lot. Utility and Color less often. Sometimes when I'm at home I would actually rather see less information. Sometimes after work I will switch to a photo face or something else. I find Solar to be soothing. If I'm outdoors and it's bright, I will use X-Large because it's easy to see the time even if the display is a little washed out by the sunlight.

    I wonder if Watch OS3 will have people switching faces more regularly? I'm probably more likely to switch faces frequently sine it will be possible with a simple swipe left or right. The downside is that it will probably be easy to accidentally switch faces unintentionally. My ideal would be to have some different faces with different complications loaded, so I can swipe between many different complications. I believe I have read that this is possible, but if the app for a complication is not loaded in the dock it will have to update when you select a face it is on.

    Sean
     
  14. BarracksSi macrumors 68040

    BarracksSi

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2015
    #14
    (odd reason to bump a thread, but hey...)
    Why do people need an oximeter in a watch?

    I'm healthy enough to not worry (at least, I think I'm healthy enough), and I keep thinking this is a case of, "because they can—sorta—they should" feature creep.

    But what's the legitimate reason?
     
  15. The Doctor11 thread starter macrumors 603

    The Doctor11

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2013
    Location:
    New York
    #15
    Maybe it would be helpful for people who need to carry supplemental oxygen. But I'm only basing that off of my experience using pulse oximeters when giving supplemental oxygen as a lifeguard.
     
  16. BarracksSi macrumors 68040

    BarracksSi

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2015
    #16
    Is it necessary in a wristwatch?

    And, what would be the consequences if it gives incorrect readings? If you've set up an alert when it drops below a given number but it never triggers, is it useful?
     
  17. The Doctor11 thread starter macrumors 603

    The Doctor11

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2013
    Location:
    New York
    #17
    If you're using supplemental oxygen it is possible to too much oxygen in your blood. And if people are going to rely on it I really don't think it would be acceptable for it to be off even if it was just a little bit.
     
  18. BarracksSi macrumors 68040

    BarracksSi

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2015
    #18
    Thanks. Yeah, that's what I was getting at. Some tasks should be left to dedicated devices.
     
  19. PracticalMac macrumors 68030

    PracticalMac

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2009
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    #19
    The finger tip monitors are in the way for those that need to know their Sp02.

    Who needs?
    Pilots
    People who are at high alt (ie: mountain climbers)
    Those with Medical conditions
    Extreme exercise
    Firefighters
    Military (possible)

    maybe even divers could use, but AW may implode :p

    Agree. Even if imprecise it could give you an alert there may be something wrong.
     

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