A YEAR ON – DOES THE APPLE WATCH STILL FIT?

A YEAR ON – DOES THE APPLE WATCH STILL FIT?

Apple Watch

From $219.99
Apple Watch
8

Overall Rating

8/10

    Pros

    • Built-in Headphones and Speakers
    • Sleek Modern Design
    • Great Accessories such as Wireless Blood Pressure Cuff
    • Golf Tracking System
    • Apple Pay enabled

    Cons

    • Battery Life (18 Hours)
    • Requires IPhone (IOS Exclusive)
    • GPS capable (Built in would be a plus)

    Like most things Apple, the Apple Watch is both attractive and higher priced than other smartwatches.  It will do almost anything except wash your dishes, but the geeks of Cupertino are probably beavering away on an app that will let your watch start your dishwasher from a remote location.

    Apple watch reviewWhat has any of this to do with telling time?  A lot, actually.  The Apple Watch does a lot of things beyond what used to require a stopwatch.  It will take your pulse and tell you how far and how fast you have walked or run – its fitness features seem to be pretty popular.  It will play music.  In fact, some of its most popular accessories are headphones and loudspeakers.

    Heck, it even has GPS.  It can be synchronized with one’s iPhone (model 5 or newer) to let the wearer know when a call, text, or email is coming in.  It also provides weather reports and forecasts in addition to making and receiving phone calls.  One can dictate messages to be sent later. And it does tell time – either digitally or with an electronic image of a traditional watch dial.

    Anyone who remembers Dick Tracy will be right at home with it.

    But there is a downside.  To perform all those functions the Apple 1 Watch requires a lot of electricity.  As advertised it has “up to 18 hours of battery life,” which means it will run out of juice before the day runs out of hours.  That can be annoying if one has a schedule to keep.  To recharge the battery one must place the watch on an “inductive” charger, which looks a little like a small white plate with a USB cord attached.  Charging is not instantaneous.  Think of it as the Tesla of watches.

    The Apple Watch features a rectangular case with smoothed and beveled edges.  It comes with a variety of wristbands from fabric to Hermes leather.  And its case, which measures either 38 or 42 millimeters ranges from aluminum to stainless steel to solid gold.

    Looking for our review on the Apple watch Series 2? Read it here

    Pricing starts at about $149 for the most modest version, while top-of-the-line 18K gold models run between $10,000 and $17,000.  In that regard the Apple 1 Watch is a bit like Alfred P. Sloan’s idea of General Motors – a product for (almost) every purse.

    Despite increasing competition in the smart-watch category, Apple markets the watch as a lifestyle item.  Other than its fitness features, which are made possible because one wears it, it really does not do any more than an iPhone, and its small size can make it difficult to initiate a phone call.  For example, there is no room for a keypad.

    However, when it was introduced a little over a year ago, it generated a great deal of excitement.  It really created its own category, and Apple wants to keep it that way.  The company markets dozens of watch accessories – from simple charging cables to elaborate table-top stands to devices that will charge both an iPhone and the watch simultaneously.  Headphones, mostly by Beats, start at $199.95 for the simplest earbud and go as high as $499.95 for slick looking model from B&O.

    There are several models of loudspeakers for the Apple Watch from a number of manufacturers including Bose.  Most are reasonably priced and use a Bluetooth connection to the watch, but a space age looking model from Naim Audio will set you back $1,499.95.

    One can buy a wireless blood pressure cuff for $129.95.  $299.95 will get you either the Withings Aura Smart Sleep System or the Arccos Golf Tracking System.

    Want to know about the Apple Watch Series 2 Nike Edition?  Read more here

    The Smart Sleet System is billed as helping “to improve your sleep and wake-up experience by using a unique combination of sleep-cycle analysis and environmental sensing,Apple smartwatch reviews along with an easy-to-use mobile app.”

    The Golf Tracking System is a tiny Bluetooth device that attaches to the grip end of a golf club.  Its app has maps of 18,000 golf courses in the US and Canada.  It tracks and analyzes one’s golf swing in real time and is supposed to help the golfer play a better game.  The set contains 13 identical tracking devices and one specifically for the putter.  So if you see a golfer checking his or her Apple Watch constantly it’s not necessarily because he or she is trying to make it back to the clubhouse before last call.

    Since Apple introduced its watch several competitors have come to market.  A lot of them lack the functionality of the Apple Watch, and particular models still need to be paired with a separate heart rate monitor to detect your heart rhythm, Apple Watch can do this through its light sensors on your wrist.

    The TomTom Spark features fitness apps and does not offer all the communication ability of the Apple Watch.  However it does offer GPS and is claimed to be “water resistant.”

    apple watch sale price

    The Asus ZenWatch is aimed at the android phone user, although its makers say that it is compatible with Apple iOS.  It offers many of the Apple 1 Watch features, but seems to be not quite so independent of the smartphone, with which the manufacturer suggests it be paired.  Priced lower than the cheapest Apple Watch, the Asus ZenWatch also seems to be less sophisticated than the Apple product in terms of communication.  However, the manufacturer maintains that it can be submerged in up to one meter of water without damage and can also go up to two days without recharging.  It is also almost as handsome as the Apple watch.

    Many of the competitors, unlike Apple, whose functionality is independent of its price points, market a variety of functions depending on the price of the watch.  The cheapest often are aimed strictly at the athlete.  A few dollars more will get one a music player.  Next up the ladder are the communications features – mostly limited text messaging.  Those that do advertise battery life all compare favorably to Apple in the one area where it does not excel.

    The ConnectedDevice Cookoo 2.0 CK2.0-005-01 is about as off-beat as its name.  Here’s what the manufacturer has to say about it:  “With Bluetooth 4.0 technology, this ConnectedDevice Cookoo 2.0 CK2.0-005-01 smart watch wirelessly connects to your compatible Android or Apple iOS device, so you can receive call, text and Facebook message and e-mail alerts.”

    The Samsung – Gear S2 Classic Smartwatch looks a lot like a traditional wristwatch.  With a list price of $349.99 it is in Apple Watch territory, and for that price one expects it to work without pairing to a smartphone.  It does.  Wi-Fi enabled, it connects easily to the internet and offers almost all the communication features of the Apple Watch.

    Looking for other iOS compatible smartwatches?  Read more here

    Where the Apple device stands taller than it’s competitors is in areas where Apple has traditionally excelled:  Ease of use, a high-functioning touch screen, applications rigidly vetted by Apple for quality control, the most sophisticated communication features of the lot and high style, which has become a hallmark of Apple products.

    Apple Watch SaleIn other words, you can do almost everything with an Apple Watch that you can do with an iPhone and a few that you can’t.  While there is no telephone keypad, it is possible to “ask Siri” to return a missed phone call or even to initiate a phone conversation provided that Siri knows what number to call.

    The Apple Watch has a built-in microphone and speaker.  Siri, as Apple users know, has voice recognition technology that allows what you tell it to show up as text on the screen.  Remarkable as it seems, on something as small as a watch dial, the text is easy to read.

    The versatility of the Apple Watch sets it apart from competitors.  It is possible to have the watch control the lights in one’s house or select music to be played by one’s computer, provided it is a Mac, or control what music one’s Apple TV plays.

    Apple’s consumer website has an extraordinary wealth of information about the Watch including well-produced video tutorials which outline its many features in detail.

    When Apple introduced its Watch it set a high bar.  Here it is in the company’s own words from its website:  “You. At a glance.”

    Instantly receive and respond to your favorite notifications. Get the motivation you need to stay active and healthy. Express your personal style in a whole new way. From the way it works to the way it looks, Apple Watch isn’t just something you wear. It’s an essential part of who you are.”

    Looking for the new Apple Airpods to go with your Apple Watch?  Read our review here

    It is safe to say that Apple has infused its Watch with so much cachet that people will likely covet it for years to come as it goes through its product cycles.  It is not so much a game changer as the iPhone was for the mobile phone industry, but it certainly has taken wearable technology to a new level.


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