Mixed feelings about the Apple Watch.

Discussion in 'Apple Watch' started by Tenashus1, Nov 8, 2018.

  1. Tenashus1 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2011
    #1
    Received my Apple Watch 4 a few days ago. I'm dazzled by the fact that I can make phone calls independent of my iPhone. I purchased the watch so I would not have to carry my iPhone during the day. I like that I get my mail. I like that I can text if I need to. At the same time, however, some apps that I use on my phone are not available on the watch, and that bothers me a bit. I hope they might appear soon. The other thing I note, at least in my case, is that there are many apps present on the phone that I just don't need. The health and fitness apps just don't do it for me. Too much clutter. I wish that the watch could just mirror my iPhone app content. So far I'm resisting using the watch. I'd love to be reassured that my phone apps might soon appear on the watch. Some may have a hard time understanding my not being completely wowed by the watch, but what can I say?
     
  2. Ntombi macrumors 68040

    Ntombi

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2008
    Location:
    Bostonian exiled in SoCal
    #2
    What do you want that isn’t available?

    I mostly got my Apple Watch for the medical features, and am pretty much happily surprised at the other use I’m getting out of it. I honestly thought Apple Pay via iPhone was as convenient as it could get, but nope: on the Watch, it’s pretty much perfecter! I also love controlling volume for music and podcasts via the watch and keeping my phone in my pocket. Little things that I hadn’t thought of.

    Also, one of the reasons I did buy it has paid off already: I’m having heart issues, as a med complication, and my resting pulse has clearly increased by about forty BPM over the last year. I was able to show my PCP the data, and we had some tests done and made some adjustments.
     
  3. DontGetTheCheese macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2015
    #3
    I was going to write a review on it, comparing it to the Fenix, but I'll just drop something quick here.

    For different reasons I'm having the same reaction. It's got some interesting things, the approach to fitness, the interface, the app market, the ability to 911 (or make cell calls for a small fortune) and maybe someday an ECG. It's enough to look at, at least.

    The thing is, it's deficient as a serious workout tracker. There's no way around it. You have to buy apps to make it function and even then you get weird things. I did some interval training with Intervals Pro, and I have no distance or speed for the intervals, anywhere in the watch. I know the watch does VO2, I've seen it, but I can't find it today for anything in the health app. The health app is a cluster duck for finding things. I swear it randomly moves things. Then, try to find your max heart rate during a workout, or get anything useful from the graphs provided.

    I'm going to try a workout with Workoutdoors this weekend to see if I can save the watch. I know it has some of these items but it's still a goddamn bolt-on to get what comes automatically in the Garmin Fenix. Basically, you buy a watch to spend $4.99 to cobble together enough to make it work.

    But the thing is, I get the things I want in the Garmin (pay, Spotify, maps, routes, crazy good fitness tracking), and it does enough other things well enough, that it gets there with just some minor hiccups here and there. The AW has a nice UI, some interesting ideas, but it just doesn't seem like it's got enough to get there on the fitness side, at least not without help that I haven't been able to find.
     
  4. matrix07 macrumors 601

    matrix07

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2010
    #4
    The basic thing is to use the Apple Watch as an Apple Watch, not as a Garmin. If you want Garmin, just buy Garmin. Case closed. I’m sure if someone want to use a Garmin as an Apple Watch they will have many things to complain about too. :rolleyes:
     
  5. Bosechris macrumors member

    Bosechris

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2018
    #5
    Hi.
    Can you put pictures of the garmin please ?
    I don’t know wich one to buy : Fenix or Applewatch.
    Can you put pictures or garmin application ?
    I want to monitor my heart, my activity aNd calories in fitness (mostly home training : weightlifting, push up, ..).
    Thanks.
     
  6. tromboneaholic, Nov 9, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2018

    tromboneaholic macrumors 68030

    tromboneaholic

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2004
    Location:
    Clearwater, FL
    #6
    It's a watch, not a phone.

    The smaller screen means it's not going to be able to replace certain types of apps.

    However, being a small wearable device means it can do some things and be used in ways the phone can't.

    What apps are you missing?

    What do you mean by health and fitness apps being too cluttered? Surely you aren't referring to the 3 activity rings...
    --- Post Merged, Nov 9, 2018 ---
    If only you could just spend $4.99 to give the Fenix it's missing features the Apple Watch comes with.

    I find the Health app to be a good repository for the data the watch collects. It's just a matter of finding the right apps that can use that data in ways that work for you.
     
  7. PatrickNSF macrumors 6502

    PatrickNSF

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2011
    #7
    I’d give iSmoothRun a look, or the Stryd app if you use a Stryd.

    I’ve been back and forth (and back and forth) on this since the original AW and I always end up going back to a Garmin for most of my running. That being said, it’s great having the AW for music and LTE and not having to run with a phone.

    This time around, I’ve been using the AW more for running because the HR sensor is really quite good, and significantly better than Garmin’s. For speed work and intervals I prefer the Garmin’s always-on screen and ability to see lap pace (as opposed to AW’s rolling pace), but for easy runs the AW with iSmoothRun or the Stryd app is ok. And you can export the runs to Garmin’s website so you can still have access to whatever reporting you like. But I’m not sure that the AW runs get factored into the Firstbeat metrics, if you rely on those.

    I think the optimal combo is probably still a Garmin for running and an AW for the rest of the time from a functional perspective. That being said, I think the Fenix is a much better looking watch for daily wear, though it lacks the functionality of the AW.
     
  8. brentc133 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2012
    #8

    Agree it definitely doesn’t come close to replacing my Garmin Fenix 5 for fitness but at the same time my Fenix doesn’t come close to the Apple Watch for notifications and music control. I still use the Fenix for tracking a workout because I cannot stand how I have to flick my wrist to see stats when the Fenix display is always on and just requires a quick glance. I bought the AW4 Nike and ended up returning it but then missed the notifications so I bought a like new used AW3 SS GPS/LTE for half the price of AW4 Nike. I’m so happy now because I have both the Fenix and AW with sapphire and stainless steel. Fenix is great for weekend camping as the battery lasts more than a week.
     
  9. DontGetTheCheese macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2015
    #9
    Garmin has gotten a lot better. You have Spotify, maps and Garmin Pay in the standard Fenix models now, and you still get notifications as before. THe UI is definitely weaker and even though it’s always on, the information is a bit limited for day-to-day use. Even Spotify has some limitations, for instance, I haven’t been able to load older podcasts, and when I do get them it’s really slow to load them.

    On a run though, everything is where you want it.

    I’m going to try ismoothrun and see if it fills the gaps.

    One last thought, a lot of this stuff really isn’t hard. Apple has an activity tracker, they just need to get serious about tracking activities with it. Or, maybe Apple sees this as a wellness device, from a medical perspective, rather than a true activity tracker. And knowing Apple, because the money is in one area, not the other, it’s exactly what they are doing.
     
  10. PatrickNSF macrumors 6502

    PatrickNSF

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2011
    #10
    All I want is someone to come up with a web-based platform that can consolidate all of my running, sleep and activity tracking from Garmin and the AW. Garmin compatibility with the Health app is hot or miss, and mostly miss. And the Health app has potential, but I'd like that data residing somewhere online where I could easily review and analyze it.

    I've tried the Gyroscope app a couple of times, and it's ok, but it feels overdone to me.
     
  11. Tenashus1 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2011
    #11
    Wore the watch today. Had some fun with it. I'm talking with someone and the watch buzzes to tell me to breathe for a minute. I thought I had already been breathing. It was like having a Jewish mother built into the watch. :) Then another small disappointment: The watch doesn't sync with my Ford Mustang's software. Have to try it with my Honda Fit next.
     
  12. sean000 macrumors 65816

    sean000

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2015
    Location:
    Bellingham, WA
    #12
    I've been using the watch since July, 2015 and before that I had a Fitbit for about a year and a half. If you're new to the Apple Watch, you can expect your usage of it to change over time. It can do so many things, but the primary purpose of the watch varies from one user to the next. People who just want a fitness tracker might be perfectly happy with a cheaper Fitbit, and hardcore athletes will most likely be happier with a Garmin. While I do take advantage of the fitness and health tracking features, the killer feature for me has always been silent notifications that are more interactive/actionable than what you would get with other smartwatches. I would much rather get a haptic tap on the wrist than an audible sound when it comes to notifications.

    You will quickly find that not every app is useful to have on the watch, but if you aren't finding the watch apps you want then you might consider alternatives. So many apps offer a watch app these days, and personally I found myself dropping some of my long-used apps that did not in favor of alternatives that did. Eventually I decided that the only apps I really needed on the watch met the following criteria:
    • Apps that provide information that is important to me, that might change throughout the day, and that can provide the information I need at a glance on the watch (weather, activity, calendar, etc.)
    • Information apps that I might use in short bursts (grocery list apps, task management)
    • Utilities like timers, messages, sleep tracking...
    Sometimes a watch app will be useful to me for a specific period of time (a particular airline's app while I'm traveling), and later I will remove it.

    I will say that, compared to the Fitbit I used to have, the Apple Watch is a more complex device that demands a little more of a learning curve for some functions. Fitbit's iOS app is simpler and more intuitive. While the Apple's Activity app is pretty easy to get the hang of, the Health app was a hot mess when it was first released. They have made some big improvements over time, but it's still a bit overwhelming for many. It is important to remember that the Health app is for much more than the watch. It's the database server for all your health related information, and you decide which apps can read and write to it. The downside is that there is a learning curve. The upside is that it allows you to use multiple third party health and fitness apps, and ensure that they all display the same information.
     
  13. matrix07, Nov 9, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2018

    matrix07 macrumors 601

    matrix07

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2010
    #13
    One of the thing I'm not sure most people knew about it already is the best feature of Health on iOS 12, despite its looking the same as iOS 11.X, is its integration with Siri Shortcuts. And since you can input almost anything into Health from weight, blood pressure, water and medicine intake to Insulin delivery, now you can just tell Siri for easy logging. You don't have to hunt where this xxx logging screen is anymore.
    And since many new health apps integrated with Health also has Siri Shortcuts capability, now it's easier than ever to get the data into Health. For example Streaks app which I'm using to log every glass of water everyday, with Siri Shortcuts full compatibility on iPhone and an app on the watch I can just lift my wrist and tell it to log a glass of water for me by saying just a few words. It won't get easier than this.
    https://www.apple.com/newsroom/2018/10/top-apps-make-everyday-tasks-even-easier-with-siri-shortcuts/

    [​IMG]
     
  14. sean000 macrumors 65816

    sean000

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    Jul 16, 2015
    Location:
    Bellingham, WA
    #14
    Hey I learned something really cool today! Thanks for that. I’ve used Streaks in the past. I should start using it again. It’s a great app.
     
  15. BillGates1969 macrumors 6502

    BillGates1969

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    Sep 11, 2008
    Location:
    Bournemouth
    #15
    Thanks! I never knew that - really cool i'll try it now.
     
  16. ericwn macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2016
    #16
    What does it mean to use an Apple Watch as an Apple Watch?
     
  17. sean000 macrumors 65816

    sean000

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2015
    Location:
    Bellingham, WA
    #17
    I get what he is saying. The Apple Watch is not a Garmin and vice versa. Don’t buy an Apple Watch and expect it to be a Garmin or even a Fitbit. The Apple Watch is an accessory and extension of the iPhone first, and a fitness tracker second.

    As much as Apple likes to promote the Apple Watch as a device for serious athletes, there are more specialized fitness trackers for that crowd. Of course there are serious athletes who wear Apple Watches, and there are serious athletes who don’t wear any fitness tracker at all. There are also casual athletes who wear Garmins. It just comes down to what you as an individual want out of a smart watch or fitness tracker. I think of the Apple Watch as a health tracker for the average person more than a fitness tracker for an elite athlete.

    If you want an Apple Watch, and you plan to use it for fitness, you are going to need to adopt Apple’s approach to fitness and health tracking, or use a third party app like Strava. You should also be aware of the battery life compared to other trackers.
     
  18. DontGetTheCheese macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2015
    #18
    The closest analogy that I can think of is, one is a sedan, the other is a pickup. Kinda the same thing, kinda not.
     

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