Hands-On Apple Watch Review

The Apple Watch is an undoubtedly unnecessary extension of your iPhone, however, after spending some serious time with the Apple Watch, we don’t want to live without it. Here we explain all the different ways Apple’s most personable device has become one of our favorites.

Eli's Apple Watch Music Bush iDrop

Design

The Apple watch has a clean and simple look without feeling too futuristic or unsightly. It has many customizable wristbands that vary in style and color, so you’re bound to find at least one to go with your wardrobe.

There are bands that work well with formal and casual wear, fit snugly, and can be adjusted for various sizes. If you haven’t worn a watch in several years, it might take some time to figure it out, however it’s easy getting the watch on and taking it off once you understand how that works.

The only negative aspect of the bands is that you can’t pick which band the watch comes with, forcing you to have to buy an extra watchband if the color it comes with is unacceptable. For example, the 42 mm Apple Watch Sport in gold is only available with a navy blue wristband. Luckily the color combo looks casual yet elegant and matches any outfit with blue jeans well. At least there’s four colors of the watch itself: silver, space gray, rose gold, or gold, matching each current iPhone.

Software

Eli's Apple Watch Home Screen Parking Lot iDropWatchOS is very different from iOS for iPhone. It might take some getting used to since there isn’t a traditional home button like on the phone. Instead, there is a “digital crown” that acts as both a back button and a dial.

There is also is no button that locks the watch, the screen goes black all on its own after about 30 seconds. Just a flick of the wrist will turn the screen on or off depending on the direction. The watch face is the default screen that pops up. Pushing on the digital crown reveals all of the apps installed on the watch.

Currently, there still seems to be a lot of iPhone apps that have yet to be adapted to the watch, Google Hangouts being one of them. At the very least, nearly all notifications from your iPhone can be selected to pop up on the watch, if you desire. One thing no one tells you, when a notification pops up on your watch, your iPhone will stay blank and silent. This is ideal for various scenarios, one scenario might be leaving your iPhone in an open or public space.

Should you get a private text message or phone call on your iPhone, your roommates or nosy mother-in-law won’t see the notification, the only person who will see the notification is the person wearing the watch connected to the iPhone, i.e., you.

Siri is available while you drive, negating the need for CarPlay. Just say, “Hey Siri,” and she will pop up on the watch. It’s easy to glance down and you don’t have to take your eyes off the road. Just ask Siri to play your favorite music, text message a friend, or get directions. It’s less distracting than looking at a GPS screen in the car.

Apple Watch can use Apple Maps from the iPhone, which works fairly well now. A route can be setup on the phone and be followed on the watch. Let Siri call out directions from the phone and see the route on the watch as a reference. You can even use the watch to call the destination or to cancel the route.

Battery Life

Eli's Apple Watch Cals iDropOne of the main complaints about the Apple Watch is the battery life. Apple has said that the watch will last about 18 hours per charge. However, you won’t get that if you are using the watch a lot.

Checking the time, browsing your apps, and playing games for long periods of time will really drain the battery. If all you are going to do is occasionally check the time or notifications, then the battery will last all day and probably all night.

Exercise enthusiasts may have to charge the watch more often, or after a long workout, if they are continuously checking the heart monitor which will drain the battery quicker. There is a power reserve mode which forces the watch to act as a simple watch, only being able to show what time it is. That will extend battery life considerably and is a useful function when the battery is getting low.

Conclusion

Most iPhone users can live without having the Apple Watch, but the utility of the watch is something to consider. Those with the iPhone 6 or 6s Plus will find having the watch to be very convenient.

Not having to pull out that large phone all the time makes checking a quick notification more discrete, and honestly sometimes all a person needs is to simply check the time.

For workouts, it really provides helpful information and it encourages you to get up and go. That is probably the most rewarding and beneficial feature. The Apple Watch is an expense well worth it for those reasons. It has become clear why 7 million people, and counting, have decided to take the plunge and check out Apple’s most personal device.

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