Friday, June 5, 2015

Apple Watch: Where Fashion Meets Technology

I tried to resist buying the Apple Watch, I really did. Who, after all, needs a computer on their wrist? Well, no one, but I'm an Apple fangirl at heart, so I placed my order.

Then it arrived, and I fell in love so quickly that it surprised even me. I'll say it again before I dive in, no one needs an Apple Watch. No one needs a Keurig machine to make coffee, either. I save only seconds, maybe a couple of minutes in prep work and cleanup each day using K-cups rather than brewing ground coffee. Nor does anyone need diamonds, or jewelry, or designer bags/shoes/clothes. Still, there is a basic pleasure in indulging in life's little luxuries sometimes. The Apple Watch is highly individual. If you ask five different people what they like about it, you'll get five different answers. If you're interested in what I like about the Apple Watch, personally, read on.
Photo from StyleCaster
I love Apple's aesthetic, the clean lines and rounded edges. Now I can wear it on my wrist. Though it's hard to tell from my sunset picture at the top, I have the same watch as the model just above. I love the shiny stainless steel casing. The white band probably wouldn't be my first choice for daily use, but it's neutral, and I plan to collect some third-party watch bands in "my colors" to supplement it. It definitely makes a statement. No one said a word about my Movado watch in the 15 years I wore it (other than "How do you read that thing?"); but people notice the Apple Watch. I expect this will change once it's been around for a while, but being an early adopter means getting comments and questions.

I enjoy being able to change the very face of the watch. In my top photo, I confirmed that yes, the sun was indeed setting when the watch told me it was. :) I've included some of my favorite faces below, but there are more, and more features and options within each one. Rather than choosing one favorite face, I move between them as my mood (and my outfit) dictates.

While all of this is very nice, the real reason for the Apple Watch is its functionality. I won't try to outline all of its features here, but I have a few favorites.

I had a FitBit prior to the Apple Watch, and I liked how it kept me accountable and helped me make sure I moved at least 10,000 steps per day. The Apple Watch takes it a step further with its three circles. In order to fill all three circles each day, you have to 1) exercise at least 30 minutes 2) burn a certain number of moving calories (determined by your age, gender, height, weight, and activity level) and 3) stand and move around for at least one minute of every hour for 12 hours. Getting those circles closed each day is quite motivating, and I do find myself moving more, not just working out and then spending most of the rest of the day on the couch.

The camera remote is a nice touch. I set up my iPhone wherever, then tap my wrist and smile! Instant selfie or group photo without the outstretched arm (or dreaded selfie stick).

I use the iPhone's GPS to get around, and the Apple Watch adds an extra layer of assistance. Wrist taps tell me which way to turn, in case I miss the spoken directions from the phone.

The notifications have really helped me stop looking at my phone so much. If I'm expecting a call, or a text, or an email, I don't have to keep pulling out and booting up my phone to see if anything's happening. A gentle tap to my wrist tells me something important is going on, and a split second glance tells me if it's something that needs my immediate attention or not. As a result, I'm not worried every second about my phone being on my person. I leave it in my purse or on the charger and go about my day. When I'm out to dinner, I don't keep my phone on the table in case one my kids is trying to reach me anymore. I won't miss anything.

The complications on some of the watch faces give me split second access to my activity levels, the date, the weather, my next appointment, and of course, the time. There are lots of other options to add, but those are my favorites.

I haven't even gotten into the apps, but I consider those secondary. If I'm going to go digging around into apps, I'll usually pull out my phone. It's the quick stuff I really enjoy on my Apple Watch.

So is there a killer feature? No, not really. But all of the little things add up to something I really enjoy wearing.