Series 3 "Always On" Screen Coming?

Discussion in 'Apple Watch' started by julesme, Oct 14, 2016.

  1. julesme macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2016
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    San Jose
    #1
    Over a week with a Series 2 42mm (which has a >30% larger battery v. Series 0!), I have consistently finished each day at 25-40% battery left.

    I wonder whether a dimmed screen "always on" feature will be added to the existing hardware with (or before) Watch OS4/Series 3.

    For those who think the hardware needs to become more efficient, how much more efficient? Why is this feature so common with AndroidWear devices?

    Appreciate any comments/thoughts!
     
  2. spinedoc77 macrumors G3

    spinedoc77

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2009
    #2
    That's a good question. I'm especially surprised at the comparatively poor battery life of the Aw versus its competitors in light of how awesome the battery life is on my 7+, yet it's one of the thinnest phones on the market. If I workout in the morning there is no way my AW will make it into the evening, it's annoying to have it peter out just when I really need it.

    Get ready for the barrage of "who needs always on display" people who will rip your head off. Me, I can't wait until the AW supports always on display, hopefully in the AW3.
     
  3. Verks7 macrumors newbie

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    Sep 19, 2016
    #3
    I'm on a series 1 and unplugged at 7am. Still have 44%. I hope AOD comes to the AW. Much needed.
     
  4. Relentless Power macrumors P6

    Relentless Power

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    Jul 12, 2016
    #4
    I think it also depends if Apple transitions into Micro LED for always on display. I think it's possible by version 3, but a stronger battery with a less power hungry processor.
     
  5. Defender2010 macrumors 68030

    Defender2010

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    Jun 6, 2010
    Location:
    England
    #5
    No, never. It's counterproductive to have an always on screen on a device which you only glance at when you raise your wrist. It's a waste of battery life, unless you wish it for other people to convieniently read the time on your Watch too. Do you want an always on iPhone screen too? Would you find that pleasing? If you think "why would I need my iPhone screen on all the time if I only look at it once in a while?" There lies your answer.
     
  6. exxxviii macrumors 65816

    exxxviii

    Joined:
    May 20, 2015
    #6
    Having recently used smart watches with always on recently, I hope Apple figures it out. Always-on is way better. When I am working and glance down at my watch, I can read an always on. Not with the AW. Plus, a good always-on analog screen dresses up the look of a smart watch. The AW looks dead, except for the few seconds you are reading it. Always-on always look good.
     
  7. OllyW Moderator

    OllyW

    Staff Member

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    #7
    I don't wear my iPhone. :p

    I think the Apple Watch looks good with the screen on but quite bland with it off. As it's something I wear, I'd rather it look good than bland. If an option for always-on becomes possible while still maintaining a decent battery life I would use it.
     
  8. BlueMoon63 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2015
    #8
    This is the key in my opinion and rumor has it that this is coming. The ability to activate a display with low power LED will consume much less power than the current technology. This is what I do (sadly) all day long and the savings can be as much as 25-30% more under all conditions. Still not sure that is enough without increasing battery size.
     
  9. julesme thread starter macrumors regular

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    Oct 14, 2016
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    San Jose
    #9
    Thanks for the comments! Does anyone who has either used Android Wear or researched the topic know what the differentiating factor is that currently allows Android watches to implement "Always On" and still achieve a full day battery? The text below is from the Android Developers Blog, May 2015:

    [...]
    Always-on apps
    Above all, a watch should make it easy to tell the time. That's why most Android Wear watches have always-on displays, so you can see the time without having to shake your wrist or lift your arm to wake up the display. In this release, we're making it possible for apps to be always-on as well.

    http://android-developers.blogspot.com/2015/05/always-on-and-wi-fi-with-latest-android.html
     
  10. Newtons Apple macrumors P6

    Newtons Apple

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    Mar 12, 2014
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    Jacksonville, Florida
    #10
    Only way Apple could introduce always on would be to change to a different screen technology. Do not know of any devices that use this screen tech that are always on. I do not think the battery, at it present size, would last half a day with the screen always on.

    I am not going to wear a thicker Apple Watch. Raise to read works well for me.
     
  11. spinedoc77 macrumors G3

    spinedoc77

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2009
    #11
    And....there it is as predicted. Yeah I want an iPhone with always on screen. My old Note 7 had an always on screen and it was a great and very useful feature. Android watches have always on screens and still last 2 days, so if I charge it every night it doesn't really matter.

    And...for the obvious, if you don't want it just turn it off.
     
  12. racersimage macrumors newbie

    racersimage

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    Jul 5, 2016
    #12
    Haha, you're exactly right! Original watches have had it all wrong for over 100 years! Glad Apple finally got it right! </sarcasm>
     
  13. julesme thread starter macrumors regular

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    #13

    Are you referring to AMOLED vs OLED or is there something else about the Apple display that differentiates from Android devices in terms of battery usage? Thanks.
     
  14. Defender2010 macrumors 68030

    Defender2010

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    England
    #14
    Original watches were and are not computers on your wrist. Unless you count a Casio digital watch, but then again...it is not an Apple Watch.
     
  15. hiutin macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2012
    #15
    Support always on display

    At some situation, you just want to have a glance of the time, you don't really want to turn your wrist, like at a meeting, lol
     
  16. lordofthereef macrumors G5

    lordofthereef

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    Nov 29, 2011
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    Boston, MA
    #16
    I'd support always on if it wasn't a detriment to battery. Perhaps allow the user the choice to turn that feature off since some people seem to think it's the worst thing ever imagined in tech lol.

    I don't mind that it's a blank screen when not in use. My bigger gripe is raising doesn't always work. I've since made a habit of tapping with my nose (when my right hand isn't free). Is it unbearable? No. do I love it? No.
     
  17. Analog Kid macrumors 601

    Analog Kid

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    Mar 4, 2003
    #17
    I'd be satisfied if the "always on" time display only used a small portion of the display, like when I press the button in power reserve mode-- as long as I could pick a color that didn't have to be green. I'm pretty sure the OLED power draw is directly related to how much of the display is lit up, so I'd think a small time indicator in the corner would work.

    Maybe a Series 3 will introduce something akin to the edge display on the portion nearest the band, so the always on region was facing me when my arm was on the desk, or keyboard, or whatnot...
     
  18. pkahleeb macrumors regular

    pkahleeb

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2016
    #18
    The thing my old Huawei Watch had that Apple doesn't is an always on screen. They countered the battery life issues by making the non-raised screen pretty dim and it turned off all the complications (whatever Android Wear calls those). On a typical 8:30 AM to 2:30 AM day, I would have around 45% battery life left.

    On Apple Watch Series 2, I am down to about 20 to 28% by the end of the same type of day. It varies a bit depending on if it is a weekend or weekday (I get more notifications, especially email, on a weekday).

    I don't think Apple is anywhere near ready to do an always on screen. I do wish the screen was more responsive when I look at it though. Several times a day, I have to tap the screen to make it show me notifications and the watch face because it doesn't come on like it should.

    If Apple did an Always on Screen, I would update to that watch instantly. It is the missing feature that Apple has compared to Android Wear. The rest of Android Wear is complete garbage though... except the Huawei Watch, with the mesh band, is probably the best looking smart watch out there still to this day.
     
  19. exxxviii macrumors 65816

    exxxviii

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    May 20, 2015
    #19
    Ditto. The S2 offered nothing substantial for my use, so I am sticking with my S0. However, if they gave us a major everyday difference, like an always-on screen, then I would jump all in.
     
  20. TxWatch macrumors 6502

    TxWatch

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    Nov 30, 2015
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    Texas
    #20
    I hope they implement always-on in a new WOS which does NOT require a hardware upgrade. Seems they could add it as a setting for all Watch hardware, so those who do not want it can leave it off.
     
  21. wegster macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2006
    #21
    Would I like one? Sure.
    Realistically, battery tech just isn't there - there's only so much power and density you can get out of a tiny battery at this point in time.
    Adding to that - multi-color display, and basically a micro-computer on a wrist. It's entirely possible we see some CPU AND screen enhancements, along with OS changes that make it more realistic. From a technology standpoint, it's pretty amazing we've got what we have just down to the above factors + bluetooth, wifi, ...

    I do wonder if the AW CPUs are effectively 'stripped down' versions of their A-series of chips, and if any optimizations are to be had via CPU changes outside of the typical process shrinking.

    It's a balance of power vs <their vision aka apps> vs OS, hardware, display power consumption, and battery tech. Would love to see always on, but I do understand why we're not there yet. Then again, I am still amazed when my iPad or phone still has nearly 100% power the day after I forgot to plug it in..definitely not the experience I've had with multiple Android devices to date.
     
  22. pkahleeb macrumors regular

    pkahleeb

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    Sep 14, 2016
    #22
    Wait a second... I am calling BS here. Android Wear watches do it. It can be done by dimming the screen, removing complications and only showing the time, etc. I can't imagine the Huawei Watch has that much more battery power to make this happen. If it can't be done, I call lazy programming of the OS by Apple. This needs to happen or be made possible as option. For the record, I would take an Always on screen versus having two days of Battery Life in a second.
     
  23. xDKP macrumors 65816

    xDKP

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    Feb 27, 2011
    Location:
    Denmark
    #23
    Really? I actually think it's pretty damn remarkable battery life I get out of mine - The AW 1st gen was good, but my S2 is amazing - often above 50% when I go to bed even on a day at the gym or going for a run - Above 70% without gym/running
     
  24. BlueMoon63 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2015
    #24
    I've only had my AW2 for four days and I am pretty amazed at the battery. I wear mine from 10pm to 8pm the next day. Battery has been 70% on normal days and 60% with an hour workout without gps. Very happy.
     
  25. spinedoc77 macrumors G3

    spinedoc77

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2009
    #25
    After having it a few days I have mixed feelings on this. If I have only a few background processes enabled, siri disabled, brightness at 50% and a screen with only 2 complications then I can get a full day out of it, depending on how much I use it. But if I workout for an hour or 2 (without GPS) with the heartrate sensor then I may only get until late afternoon/early evening. The differentiator here being the AW does not have an always on display. But the HR sensor really takes a huge bite out of the battery life in my experience.
     

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