Apple Watch – 6 Months Later. Not That Great.

When I shared my first impression on the Watch, it was all hail of fanfare. I had nothing bad to say about it, and even if I had, I ignored or minimized it.

Six months of daily use later, and I become annoyed with it. If it wasn’t too big of a statement, I would have gone back to my Polar RS-100.

Before I go on, I need to put things into perspective. I’ve just went back to that first impression post that I wrote. Turns out I wasn’t blind to its limitations, and I didn’t expect it to be much more than a beautifully designed, simple watch.

I still don’t. I do use it for the most basic functions, and rarely switch from the main screen. Taking a glance at the time and my next meeting, getting a feel of the temperature outside, and making sure that I have my alarm set, are really my main functions I use it for.

I have almost no 3rd party app installed on it, other than Duo, which makes VPN authentication a bit easier. I use the Workout app when I run, and the navigation’s haptic signals when I drive out of the city – it does help me with keeping my eyes on the road.

Those uses are illustrated in the screenshots bellowr


Figure 1: Those screenshots capture 99% of what I use the Watch for

And that’s not what getting my upset, and leading me to write this.

What bothers me is that the Watch fails at being a simple watch. Take charging for example – I need to do it every night. “You stupid Apple fanboy, didn’t you read the spec before you bought it?”. I did. I knew about it, and yet I’ve discounted it. I thought it will be as simple as charging my iPhone. I was wrong – it isn’t. Having to take off your watch, every night, is like a Chinese torture – it impinges you one drop at a time, until you can’t stand it anymore.

As I’m writing this, I’m on vacation. I’m wearing the Watch, but it’s dead. I brought its charger with me, yet I’m too lazy to connect it to the outlet, take off my watch and connect it to the charger. You know what – no, it’s not because I’m lazy. It’s because I don’t suppose to take off my watch every night and charge it!

Another example – the sport band, which doesn’t make it easier to take the Watch off and put it back on. It’s a clumsy mechanism that causes me to drop the Watch on the floor too often, when trying to fasten it on my hand. And I’m not going to spend $149 on a Leather Loop that suppose to do better job at that.

It might have been the post Apple-ohilic of me who wrote this, but now that I let it go, I can go back to be the acquiescence user that I am. I’ll go out of bed to set up the charger, and keep telling myself it’s the best watch ever designed…

25 thoughts on “Apple Watch – 6 Months Later. Not That Great.”

  1. Thanks for the 6 month review. I have a stainless steel 42 MM. watch with a Milanese loop as well as a white sport band that I’ve owned for about 7 months now. I don’t necessarily share your perspective here. I think this is the first ‘smartwatch’ that I can actually wear as a regular watch, without looking like a geek. In other words, I think it’s a beautifully engineered first generation product with hardly any fundamental flaws. The charging situation will improve with future versions for sure, but that’s what you sign up for, as an early adopter.

    1. I agree with every word you say. This is a “beautifully engineered first generation product”. I just don’t find it a watch replacement at the moment. And obviously it’s not because it’s an Apple Watch. This is true also for other smartwatch (I didn’t try the pebble yet, which might be a good compromise between a watch and a smartwatch.)

      1. It really amazes me with the folks aren’t happy with the  watch and have to care enough to post on theses sites. Why do you care?

      1. It would also be nice if my iPhone could take DSLR quality photos so I don’t have to lug my Canon around.

        It’s not a big deal, folks. Just take it off and charge before bed. It should go on your nightstand anyway. Why are you sleeping with your watch on?

        1. iPhone could take DSLR quality photos

          Terrible example, the iPhone takes excellent photos and 99% of people HAVE stopped taking DSLRs out

  2. I enjoy my watch. Maybe because I had to charge my Fitbit charge. The watch charges quickly when I’m in the shower or seating doing nothing is when I charge the watch. I like getting my text messages without pulling my phone out. I like all the information that is on the face for a first time attempt I’m impressed.

    1. Yeah, I’ve started to develop that charging habit as well – charge it for an hour or so before going to sleep. This way I can also use the vibrate alarm in the morning. But too often I forget, or I just don’t have that hour before bed to charge it, and that’s when (like few hours ago, when I wrote this) I get frustrated with it…

  3. Tip: Wear the watch at night if you want. It only takes 45 minutes to charge, so take it off on arising and put it on the charger while you get ready for the day. I wear my watch all day and all night too this way. (And I’d take it off when showering etc. in any case.) I switch the face to a red-hued X-Large face at night to preserve my night vision and switch its Wake Screen on Wrist Raise option off. Bonus: it’s the world’s greatest alarm clock. “Siri, wake me up at 5:45.” Done.

    You’re apparently missing out on some of its many other functionalities. Podcast and music control, Siri, Dark Sky, Messages, news and Twitter updates, boarding passes… Use it for more and you might like it more. I do and I do.

  4. I use my Apple Watch every day and I am pleased with it for all the reasons you can read above. It never dies before the end of my “awaked day”… Charging it each night is of no concern to me. Indeed, I never wore my regular watch when I was sleeping anyway, so I don’t see why I would start willing to do it ? it does not bother me.

  5. This post goes to show that we are all different individuals with different habits and tastes.

    I have always removed my traditional watch at night. So removing my Apple Watch at night to charge it fell right into that habit and it usually has power to spare when I do so.

    As for the sports band, it took me a little while to master it but now it’s of course no problem to remove the watch but it’s just as easy to put it back even with the lights out.

    To me the killer app everybody say is lacking for the Apple Watch is very real. It’s called convenience. All those times I can just take a quick look at my watch to decide if I need to act or something instead of pulling out my phone add up to a lot of said convenience.

    My Apple Watch is an integral part of my life and I wouldn’t want to be without it.

    1. Your observation is the key – if the Watch is “the most personal device”, then it commands different taste and opinions. Thanks for sharing yours.

  6. I never thought I’d get one, until I used gift cards, so I only spent $40 cash on it. I really like the notifications, keeps me from removing my phone from my pocket, which saves battery life on my phone. Having just the right info on the screen makes it useful. I trade off between 3-4 faces. Charging hasn’t been an issue. Like other commenters, I top it off when I am in the shower or reading. I have an external battery that I keep so it’s convenient to charge anywhere without having to seek out an outlet.

  7. So in summary: you use it daily and it makes your life easier but you don’t like charging it daily.

    Boo-fucking hoo.

  8. I don’t have an AppleWatch, but when I’m talking to an AppleWatch wearer who’s using her hands while talking… it bothers me seeing the watch blink on and off. It’s a distraction to me. Then again, I’m easily distracted.

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