Life with Apple's iWatchWed, Aug 19, 2015
I confess, I’m a bit of a gadget hound. I own four different smart watches all with different OSs:
- Pebble with PebbleOS
- Samsung Gear with Tizen
- Motorola 360 with Android Wear
- and now Apple iWatch with WatchOS
When I first got the Pebble (Kickstarter model) I was instantly impressed. It was a device that lasted days, gave me notifications at a glance, and allowed me keep my phone in my pocket unless it was really needed. The trouble is that I got bored pretty quickly with it’s lack of functionality and the Samsung Gear looked enticing. With the ability to make calls, as well everything the Pebble did and more, it seemed like a no brainer. It originally came with a version of Android so buggy it made the device pretty much unusable. Much later this was ‘upgraded’ to a Tizen OS which to its credit was better, but was still limited. Enter Android Wear. In a blaze of publicity at Google I/O 2014 this wearable OS seemed perfect, so I went and purchased the Motorola 360, arguably the best looking device on the market. Unfortunately, this was also crippled. No sound (so no beeps, no notification noises), no ability to make and receive calls, and more importantly no real way to get back to notifications once they were dismissed as well as no real compelling stock applications, this watch just felt like a device to vibrate every time something happened and to ignore at all other times. Android Wear just wasn’t compelling enough so I always gravitated back to Garmin watches (Forerunner 620, Forerunner 920t). Now there is the Apple Watch.
I’m still in the honeymoon stages with it at the moment but I have been wearing it exclusively for the past three weeks. It’s proven to be a useful aid: the fitness app is a bit poor and I’ll revisit this point in another blog post but overall the experience of using it has been pleasant. I can read messages and email, make and receive calls, the calendar app is super useful, and I’ve found that I use it extensively for reminders. All in all it has been a success so far but it is not without its problems. Watch OS 2.0 promises to improve the device further and I am certainly looking forward to it but for now, the iWatch is the best smart watch in an immature market.