Is Apple Watch worth the price in cold weather?

conifer

macrumors regular
Original poster
Oct 30, 2014
139
34
Read that the heart rate monitor doesn't work in the cold although I can't seem to find the temperature.
Given that the rest of the information is on the phone, I'm wondering if worth $400+ to just not have to pull phone out of pocket to control music etc. My plantronics backbeat Bluetooth headset can advance a song or raise volume like the watch. If the watch had a scrubber to advance within a song that might be worth something.

Apple smart to introduce watch in u.s. in the spring so we don't ask this question. I have a week to return so am asking this question and am curious what people think.
 

Mac 128

macrumors 603
Apr 16, 2015
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Not sure what you're asking, but the ambient operating temperature of the watch specified by Apple is 32F to 95F. So the HRM should work down to 32F. Since 95F is lower than the bodies' own temperature of 98.7, I have to assume the ambient temperatures take into account the heat coming from the body. So I wouldn't assume that your arm will keep the watch above 32F where the ambient temperature is lower than 32F.

Ideally the Watch is a perfect companion in cold weather to keep from having to pull the phone out to use it. However, the watch has similar temperature limitations, so it sadly may not be much help in temperatures below 32F where it would otherwise be indispensable.
 

conifer

macrumors regular
Original poster
Oct 30, 2014
139
34
Ideally the Watch is a perfect companion in cold weather to keep from having to pull the phone out to use it. However, the watch has similar temperature limitations, so it sadly may not be much help in temperatures below 32F where it would otherwise be indispensable.
Yes this is what I am asking. I am wondering if its worth it for a heart rate monitor that will only work some months of the year.
In your post, are you saying the other features will work below 32F and only the heart rate monitor won't work, or will other features also be affected by a drop in temp?
 

burgman

macrumors 68020
Sep 24, 2013
2,060
1,542
Yes this is what I am asking. I am wondering if its worth it for a heart rate monitor that will only work some months of the year.
In your post, are you saying the other features will work below 32F and only the heart rate monitor won't work, or will other features also be affected by a drop in temp?
Do us a favor and go find a cold storage walkin and test the watch. I would like to know the results.
 

Packfan99

macrumors member
May 5, 2015
81
28
Centennial, CO
Do you normally have your wrist exposed in cold temperatures? I usually wear long sleeves when it is below freezing, but that's because I'm originally from Wisconsin, and it doesn't get cold there:p
 
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conifer

macrumors regular
Original poster
Oct 30, 2014
139
34
Do you normally have your wrist exposed in cold temperatures? I usually wear long sleeves when it is below freezing, but that's because I'm originally from Wisconsin, and it doesn't get cold there:p
Wow great point. So it would be underneath sleeves and a jacket. And you would push up the sleeve to get a reading. So I wonder if it work or if when you push it up, the cold air hits the watch and makes it go into one of those trying to get reading spins.

No walk-in freezer near me but brilliant idea if someone could test it.
 

CharlesShaw

macrumors 6502a
May 8, 2015
580
464
Do us a favor and go find a cold storage walkin and test the watch. I would like to know the results.
Why won't the freezer in your kitchen work for the test? Just stick your arm in there while wearing the watch.
 

Shorty89

macrumors newbie
Jun 3, 2015
29
1
Over here in the land of down under. The area I live in during winter gets down to minus 4-6 degrees every year and during summer anywhere from 34-41 degrees. I will put it to the test
 

Night Spring

macrumors G5
Jul 17, 2008
13,074
5,173
Wow great point. So it would be underneath sleeves and a jacket. And you would push up the sleeve to get a reading. So I wonder if it work or if when you push it up, the cold air hits the watch and makes it go into one of those trying to get reading spins.
It's not like you are going to be walking around outside in below freezing temperatures with your sleeve pushed up exposing your watch for hours. A few seconds of cold air is about all the watch is likely to get at a time. That's not enough to bring the watch temperature down to inoperable levels.
 

Newtons Apple

Suspended
Mar 12, 2014
22,759
15,220
Jacksonville, Florida
My, my, raising your sleeve long enough to read the watch is not goin
Wow great point. So it would be underneath sleeves and a jacket. And you would push up the sleeve to get a reading. So I wonder if it work or if when you push it up, the cold air hits the watch and makes it go into one of those trying to get reading spins.

No walk-in freezer near me but brilliant idea if someone could test it.
g to lower the temp of the watch body enough to matter. It amazes me how . . . . Never mind.
 
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Esoom

macrumors 6502
Apr 30, 2010
415
48
Colorado
My, my, raising your sleeve long enough to read the watch is not going to lower the temp of the watch body enough to matter. It amazes me how . . . . Never mind.
Hey, it's a legit question, I charge my watch in the freezer, put it on every morning, and it's 28 F, doesn't work worth a damn. Jobs would never have released a device this temperamental.
 

Gav2k

macrumors G3
Jul 24, 2009
9,217
1,606
I was working in -25'c last week for several hours checking the time every ten minutes or so with no issues. Heart rate was taken several times each hour again with no issues
 

conifer

macrumors regular
Original poster
Oct 30, 2014
139
34
I was working in -25'c last week for several hours checking the time every ten minutes or so with no issues. Heart rate was taken several times each hour again with no issues
So minus 25 celsius, meaning minus 13 Fahrenheit? That would be good news if so, way below the 32 F Apple says is the minimum
 

parseckadet

macrumors 65816
Dec 13, 2010
1,142
661
Denver, CO
I'm not quite sure what you're saying here. Are you saying the article said the entire watch stopped working, or did it just say that the heart rate monitor did? Regardless, both statements are false.

Based on my reading around, here's the issue I think the article was touching on. Your body tries to stay warm in cold weather by sending less blood to your extremities. This is why your toes and fingers are the first parts of your body to feel cold, and the last to warm up.

The Apple Watch measures heart rate by measuring the changes in blood flow beneath it. So, since the Apple Watch is on your wrist, and since there is less blood flowing through your wrist when you're cold, the Apple Watch will have less blood to measure. But that doesn't mean the watch will be unable to measure heart rate at all, it will just be less accurate.

Notice that this is all a result of the technique the Apple Watch uses to measure heart rate. Any other device that uses the same technique, such as the FitBit Chrage HR, the Microsoft Band, or just about any other wrist worn device, will face the same difficulty. None of these devices can overcome your body's biological response to the environment.

Also notice that all of this is specific to the heart rate measurement. Other features of the Apple Watch, including the accelerometer and step counting, will continue to function properly.

So, back to my confusion earlier. How you view this depends on how you view the Apple Watch. Do you view it as a glorified heart rate monitor that just happens to do a bunch or other stuff? If so, then I suggest you start looking for something else that doesn't live on your wrist. But if you view it as a device that does many useful things, only one of which is heart rate, then you'll still be able to do all those other things, and you'll just have to understand the shortcomings involved with the heart rate monitor.
 

Mac 128

macrumors 603
Apr 16, 2015
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In your post, are you saying the other features will work below 32F and only the heart rate monitor won't work, or will other features also be affected by a drop in temp?
Apple says NOT TO USE the watch at all below 32F. And it may be stored safely powersd off only down to -4F. Otherwise the watch may be damaged. Your mileage may vary, but those are the official specs.
 

conifer

macrumors regular
Original poster
Oct 30, 2014
139
34
Apple says NOT TO USE the watch at all below 32F. And it may be stored safely powersd off only down to -4F. Otherwise the watch may be damaged. Your mileage may vary, but those are the official specs.
Thanks. I found on the apple site where it says the heart rate won't work in cold weather but can't find the information you are citing--can you please give a link?
 
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