Battery/Charging Straps other than Reserve?

Discussion in 'Apple Watch Accessories' started by fishkorp, Nov 9, 2015.

  1. fishkorp macrumors 68020

    fishkorp

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2006
    Location:
    Ellicott City, MD
    #1
    Are there any other battery/charging bands/straps out there other than the Reserve Strap (which should have started shipping last week)? Now that RunKeeper runs native on the watch, it destroys my battery life when I go on long hikes. Watch was 100% charged when I started yesterday. By the time I got done with a 12 mile hike it was down to 4%. When the app was just a companion to the iPhone app it was much, much better on the watch battery. But I like being able to just look down at my wrist at how long/far we've been going, without pulling out my phone. So I'm looking into options for giving me extra battery life or charging on the go. The only thing I came across was the Reserve Strap, which is $250. The old pre-orders should have started shipping, which means if I ordered now I probably won't see it for months. Is there anything else out there yet?
     
  2. nicho macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2008
    #2
    i don't use runkeeper but i'm wondering why does it kill your battery life so much, is it using the heart rate sensor like the workout app does? if it is, that's the source of all your battery problems and you have two options really - disable it, or buy a bluetooth heart rate monitor (such as the wahoo tickr)
     
  3. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #3
    How long did it take for you to do the hike, 8 hours, 10 hours? I think the heart sensor is going for that long and its killing your battery. Try another app or just use the runkeeper from your phone
     
  4. fishkorp thread starter macrumors 68020

    fishkorp

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2006
    Location:
    Ellicott City, MD
    #4
    It does use the heart rate sensor. I can try turning that off.

    Last hike was 6 hours, but that was with stopping to see all the autum views, have lunch, etc. it's not usually that long.
     
  5. nicho macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2008
    #5
    30 minutes of the heart rate sensor used about 7% of my watch battery today, so multiply that by 12 and you're there or thereabouts i guess!

    however, using a bluetooth heart rate monitor means the optical sensor doesn't have to kick in and so the battery drain is minimal. i'd recommend this over the alternatives of turning off the heart rate sensor (=inaccurate calorie calculations) and buying the reserve strap - a bluetooth HRM is much cheaper.
     
  6. jasie02 macrumors 6502a

    jasie02

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2014
    #6
    Did you try using different app, like x-motion?
    It is easy to blame on Apple for battery life, but unless you are using native app, app control how much power it will drain from AW, not the watch itself.
    Try several app, maybe use it for 1 hrs each during the hike, set timer/reminder during hike to remember to switch app, so you could get a comparison when using in same hike.
     
  7. nicho macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2008
    #7
    I'm not sure OP is blaming on apple for battery life... but as we already said, it's not the app itself thats the problem it's the use of the heart rate monitor constantly. OP would experience the same with the built in "workout" app or any other app that uses it.
     
  8. jasie02 macrumors 6502a

    jasie02

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2014
    #8
    Are we saying all apps behave the same, use same amount of battery?
    I am not sure I will be so quick on making statement that all app behave the same, without any testing.
    Personally I have none of these issue with excessive battery using activity app for running or hiking with gps app.
     
  9. nicho macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2008
    #9
    you run for 6 hours with the heart rate monitor enabled? you hike for 6 hours with a gps app *running native on the watch and accessing the heart rate monitor*?

    OP has already said that he uses the runkeeper app on the watch. it is constantly accessing the heart rate monitor. the heart rate monitor is the single biggest source of battery drain on the watch because it is constantly on and uses active green LEDs. the amount of battery life used by any indivdual app will be negligible in comparison.

    battery life is rated by apple as up to 6 1/2 hours with the HRM turned on - http://www.apple.com/watch/battery.html .

    if someone is stopping to enjoy autumn views on their hike, do they really strike you as the kind of person who wants to mess around with 4/5 apps and test battery life on that hike? they don't me! hiking is meant to be enjoyable, isn't it, it's hardly the same as a walk to work (where one might be tempted to do that kind of testing)

    plus, um, he likes to use runkeeper. other apps won't be compatible.
     
  10. jasie02 macrumors 6502a

    jasie02

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2014
    #10
    Why heart rate monitor is single suggestion of source, it is your "guess" or is there any proof? Would you bet your bank account apps will not cause problem?
    And is there anything wrong for me to suggest app could also part of issue?

    I am test engineer for 20+ years, guessing means nothing to me, I believe in data and test result, and I always turn all stone over to ensure there is no other possibility.

    You don't have to convince me other wise, we could go on this thread back and fore for thousand response, and until you prove to me with data, I don't believe heart rate is only cause.
     
  11. nicho macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2008
    #11
    you're the one telling OP you don't have the same problem, without providing details of your own usage.

    when i work out, i do it for the purposes of working out and not for the purposes of proving the obvious. i can't give you data, beyond agreeing with what this person says, that the battery drain difference is "noticeable" between using a bluetooth chest strap and optical heart rate sensor - http://forums.macrumors.com/threads...-buy-a-chest-hrm.1889540/page-2#post-21514437 . OP doesn't say he has any other battery life problems, short of this app - an app that is using the optical heart rate monitor constantly. apple rates that use case for only 6 1/2 hours for a reason. the optical HRM is the reason for this extra battery drain. how do i know?

    • During running and walking workouts, turn on Power Saving Mode to disable the heart rate sensor. To do this, open the Apple Watch app on iPhone, go to My Watch > Workout, and turn on Power Saving Mode. Note that when the heart rate sensor is off, calorie burn calculations may not be as accurate.
    • For longer workouts, you can choose to use a Bluetooth chest strap instead of the built-in heart rate sensor. To pair the Bluetooth chest strap with your watch, make sure the strap is in pairing mode, then open Settings on Apple Watch, select Bluetooth, and choose from the list of Health Devices.

    from https://www.apple.com/batteries/maximizing-performance/#watch

    i feel like you're trying to improve the aerodynamics of a car with square wheels.
     
  12. fishkorp thread starter macrumors 68020

    fishkorp

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2006
    Location:
    Ellicott City, MD
    #12
    The app worked fine until the most recent watch update. The 2 big changes were 1) running native and 2) using heart rate.

    If I turn heart rate off and battery drain is still there, it's an issue of the app running native. I had no issues at all hiking/running with the app until that update.
     
  13. jasie02 macrumors 6502a

    jasie02

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2014
    #13
    I still don't believe one word you say, need more explanation.
     
  14. Synomenon macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2011
    #14
    So are there any other charging bands besides the Reserve Strap?
     
  15. fishkorp thread starter macrumors 68020

    fishkorp

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2006
    Location:
    Ellicott City, MD
    #15
    I haven't found one yet. And there isn't even much info on that. They don't reply to my messages and I haven't seen any reviews, even though the strap was supposed to start shipping last week.
     
  16. Skorpio macrumors 6502

    Skorpio

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2015
    Location:
    SC USA
    #16
    This is probably not the answer you're looking for, but only an alternative suggestion. You could buy a cheap "battery bank" to take along with a charging cord and do a quick charge to get you by while resting or obvserving. Unfortunately, it's another thing(s) to carry, but may do until a better solution reveals itself.
     
  17. fishkorp thread starter macrumors 68020

    fishkorp

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2006
    Location:
    Ellicott City, MD
    #17
    Looks like the Rederve Strap is a bust anyway. It is finally shipping (4 months late), BUT, Apple blocked charging via diagnostic port in WatchOS 2.0.1. So anyone with an up to date watch has a worthless band. Glad I didn't jump in!

    Anyone come across any other solutions other than what Skorpio suggests? I think that's what I'm going to me up doing for now. It's not ideal, but can keep me going during long hikes though. With the lower price, I was considering buying a second watch now. A Sport one just for sports/activities. When on sale at Target/Best Buy it's the same proce as the Reserve Strap.
     
  18. Mac2me macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2015
    #18
    I was kind of surprised to read the news that there was even a company out there that was working on a battery strap using that port. I thought I read a long time ago, like near watch launch maybe, that Apple stated to developers that the port was not to be used. If so that's a lot of development money to go into something that most likely was going to get yanked.
     

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