The 5 Second Rule for Smart Watches

Discussion in 'Apple Watch' started by bulldoze, Apr 7, 2016.

  1. bulldoze macrumors regular

    Mar 15, 2011
    After giving it a lot of thought I have come to the conclusion that if any task takes longer than 5 seconds to do on a watch then it is outside the window of usability and you would be better of pulling your phone out of your pocket. What does everyone think?

    It seems to me that apart from the limiting screen size and the slow apps it becomes uncomfortable real quick to hold your arm in that unnatural position (and probably damaging in the long term for your shoulder health)

    The challenge going forward then is what can Smart watches legitimately be used for apart from notifications and simple complications?
  2. PaladinGuy macrumors 6502a

    Sep 22, 2014
    Totally agree. I'm almost of the opinion that it should be more like 3 seconds. I've pretty much stopped wearing my Apple Watch because of the frequent lag and the load time of lots of apps. Even when I go to start an exercise session, it frustrates me how much the watch lags to get the right screen. It's not minutes, obviously, but it bugs me.
  3. douglasf13 macrumors 68000

    Jul 2, 2010
    I agree that it might even be 3 seconds, but I still can't live without the thing, because notifications/communications and time are why I bought it in the first place. I think DarkSky is the only 3rd party complication I use.

    I once again tried to wear one of my Swiss divers a few days ago, just because it's such a great looking watch, but I didn't even make it an hour before switching back to my Apple Watch. It's too handy for me to give up.
  4. PaladinGuy macrumors 6502a

    Sep 22, 2014
    I've had my Seamaster on for around a week. I'm just enjoying it a lot more than my Apple Watch right now.

    If Siri was more dependable on the Apple Watch, I'd probably wear it much more often. The other thing that's starting to irritate me lately is the fitness data being inconsistent/off. Heart rate and steps are way off at times for me.
  5. sean000, Apr 7, 2016
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2016

    sean000 macrumors 68000


    Jul 16, 2015
    Bellingham, WA
    Notifications and complications count for a lot in my book. That saves me from having to get my phone out of a pocket or bag dozens of times per day. Off the top of my head, here are some things I do with my watch that I think are faster and/or more convenient than accomplishing the same thing with my iPhone... None require interactions of more than a few seconds:
    • Reminders. I use them a lot. I often set them using Siri on the watch, and I mark done, snooze or reschedule using the watch as well.
    • View or update my task list
    • Record the amount of time I spend working on a project
    • Incoming texts - I'd rather not have to get my iphone out unless the reply warrants more than one of the selectable standard replies. Most of the time the iphone is not needed
    • Checking my calendar
    • Checking the weather forecast
    • Checking the time and date
    • Setting a timer
    • Slack notifications for when my name, or one of my notification words, gets mentioned
    • Grocery Shopping: I use the Bring app so I can check things off my list without carrying my iphone the entire time I'm shopping. Then I pay using Apple Pay on the watch. I don't need to get out my iphone or my wallet at all. I only use the iphone to add things to my list before I shop.
    • Quickly view notes or outlines when I need to keep referring to them while on the go (otherwise I'll use the iphone)
    • Turn on or off my Philips Hue lights...dim them as well
    • Control music playing on the speakers through my iphone, and remotely see what artist and song are playing
    • Ask Siri for directions
    • Ask Siri to call or text someone
    • Check the tide level at our local beaches
    • Check my Activity progress
    • Check my calorie budget in Lose-it (something I should use more regularly)
    • Ping my iPhone so I can find it!
    I'm sure there are things I'm forgetting. The watch is about lots of little conveniences that add up. It's about not needing to get my iPhone out for every little glance for information. Personally I think it works really well and almost all of the apps I use are quick and responsive (although this was not the case eight months ago) Threads like this remind me of the classic Louis C.K. bit from the Conan O'Brian show: "Everything is amazing and nobody is happy." ;)

    Of course not everyone needs the same conveniences. Some people would never need or want to do half the things on my list. They may have their own ways of using the watch, or perhaps the watch has very little value to them at all.

  6. douglasf13 macrumors 68000

    Jul 2, 2010
    Yeah, I've got a drawer full of Squales, Omegas, Rolexs, etc., but notifications, texting and weather are super useful to me on the wrist...and, by just telling the time, the Apple Watch is already as useful as my Submariner (unless I'm diving.) I don't use Siri all that much.
  7. PaladinGuy macrumors 6502a

    Sep 22, 2014
    I'd be glad to take some of those Omegas and Rolexs off of your plate, in that case. The Submariner is my favorite watch, followed by the Datejust. I've begun to like the Explorer I more and more but find I need a date. That said, they're way out of my price range. I had a 1991 Date not long ago, but I'm not someone that loves tritium dials. Also wasn't willing or able to throw down over $1500 for a service dial, hands and cleaning.
  8. douglasf13 macrumors 68000

    Jul 2, 2010
    Yeah, I've been planning on selling them, honestly. I'd stick with your Seamaster, though. Great watch. My Aqua Terra is one of my favorites...but I'm probably selling that one, too. I just don't wear them, after wearing the Apple Watch for 8 months.
  9. IphoneIssues macrumors 65816

    Dec 30, 2010
    Except for the thing that you don't know if it's going to take 5 seconds each time.
  10. PaladinGuy macrumors 6502a

    Sep 22, 2014
    Exactly. Inconsistency is what has begun to drive me away from using mine. I never know if it's going to work or not. I'd almost say consistency is more important than ability. It can be more mediocre, as long as it is consistent at what it does and how well it does it. My phone works almost 100% of the time. Thus, I've begun to resort to just using it instead of the watch from the get go.
  11. BarracksSi Suspended


    Jul 14, 2015
    I don't mind using an app for more than five seconds -- say, skimming the news via News360 or playing Alien Invasion -- when I'm sitting on the john.

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10 April 7, 2016