series 3 nike vs. series 3 LTE battery life

Discussion in 'Apple Watch' started by joeblough, Oct 30, 2018.

  1. joeblough macrumors 6502

    Sep 30, 2006
    hi everyone,

    about 5 months ago i bought a new series 3 nike watch. i wear the watch to bed for sleep tracking, and charge it for about 20 minutes each morning while showering. using the watch like this, i was getting almost 4 days of runtime.

    a couple weeks back, my dad gave me his old LTE series 3 watch. i started wearing this watch instead of the nike as it is the stainless model, however, using/charging it the same way i'm only getting about 2 days runtime.

    i currently have no cellular plan for the watch, so i don't think the problem is necessarily related to the cellular radio in the watch. i'd hope that it's powered down when there's no plan configured. i guess the LTE watch has more flash memory but would that burn so much extra power?

    the stainless watch is actually a warranty replacement, as the original one died.

    i wonder if the replacement is essentially refurbished and the prior owner (or my dad) thrashed the battery. or maybe there is just this much variation between watches?

    are there any battery diagnostics available for the apple watch?

  2. macrumors 604

    May 26, 2016
    As far as I’m aware of, refurbishment in the apple world is vastly superior compared to any other company. They change the battery and screen and test it rigorously before putting it back out there. It might just be the expected difference in terms of battery life.
  3. dave006 Contributor


    Jul 3, 2008
    Just West of East
    Correct it is not the LTE radio. It is not even powered on if a plan is not configured / provisioned to the watch.

    I would vote that a newer version of the watchOS or maybe you are using more features. For example watch OS 5 handles Wi-Fi differently and uses slightly more battery on my Series 3 LTE vs watchOS 4 daily.

  4. joeblough thread starter macrumors 6502

    Sep 30, 2006
    i think you are correct at least about the outer parts. about 15 years ago a friend that works at apple told me that apple just uses the internal parts for refurb - the parts that a customer can touch with their hand is always new, at least in iPods (which is what we were talking about at the time.)

    it stands to reason that they would replace the battery, but since they can test batteries maybe they don't do it if they conclude it is new enough?

    i suppose it is true that i was running watchos4 on the nike watch - that is a big difference which i forgot about - but the LTE watch was restored from a backup of the nike watch so in theory the configuration should be the same.

    i still have the nike watch but didn't want to upgrade it in case the older OS was a selling point, so i can't test if the behavior under watchos5 is the same. but that would suck if the new OS took away a whole day of runtime!

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3 October 30, 2018