I wasn’t going to buy the Apple Watch at first. It felt like a silly thing to splash out £300 for a 1st generation product that I knew would have some teething issues.
More than that though, I was certain that I didn’t want yet another device calling for my attention. As if it isn’t annoying enough having my iPhone, iPad and MacBook pinging together when I get notifications, I didn’t want my Watch ‘tapping’ me on the wrist every time too.
For the sake of experimentation, I jumped in and bought the 38mm Apple Watch Sport with a black strap and Space Grey body, and oddly enough, the Apple Watch hasn’t been that annoying, additional device I was expecting it to be.
I handle notifications better now
One of the most surprising aspects of owning an Apple Watch has been the way I’ve interacted with it.
I can feel a notification coming through with a tap on the wrist (thanks to Apple’s Taptic engine) and once I check it, look away. Yeah, I can use the pre-set messages or voice dictate a reply, but by-and-large interactions with Apple Watch are limited, meaning I almost always postpone acting on any notifications until I’m on my iPhone again.
That’s a great thing. Apple Watch has made it so that I spend less time dealing with notifications — I simply check the information that comes through, decide whether it’s worth acting on and carry on with whatever I’m doing. Reading that email or replying to a message can be delayed until later if it’s not important enough. Think of it like a filter.
Taking awkward phone calls
There’ve been a few times where I’m holding my niece or nephew, making it difficult to reach for my iPhone when someone rings. Apple Watch has (on countless occasions) made it super simple to answer important calls right there. It’s also cute to see the baby’s reaction.
Even in the car, if I’m not connected to the Bluetooth system, the Apple Watch has enabled me to answer phone calls when I couldn’t otherwise. (Remember folks, holding your phone while driving is dangerous!)
Less time on my iPhone
Interestingly, I’ve spent far less time on my iPhone — especially in social situations — since getting the Watch, and that’s a good thing. Not only because I get the convenience of information directly to my wrist (which is less work that pulling out my phone every time), but because I don’t get distracted by all the apps and the notification badges lingering above their icons.
I don’t feel the same obligation to reply to every email, message or Tweet like I do on my iPhone. I can just do it later because the Watch makes it that much harder to get anything done thanks to its tiny screen.
In all honesty, I don’t think you can grasp what Apple Watch has to offer until you try it. I was a sceptic at first and I’ve even considered selling it plenty of times, but using one for the last few months has made me realise I’d probably miss it when it’s gone.
It’s incredibly useful for notifications when I’m on the road, and the way I can handle phone calls has been handy on more than one occasion.
Will everybody find a use for it? No, probably not. What I can say is that the Apple Watch is the first piece of tech I’ve bought that makes me spend less time starting down into a screen, and more alert to the real world around me. That’s a powerful thing, and that alone makes it worth the £300 I spent on it.