Thursday, April 9, 2015

Apple Watch Reviews

The Apple Watch will be available for pre-order at 3am ET/12am PT April 10th (tonight basically).  It will be released April 24th.

Here are some pullout quotes from notable reviews about the Apple Watch:

The Verge

"Let’s just get this out of the way: the Apple Watch, as I reviewed it for the past week and a half, is kind of slow..."

"It’s also surprisingly heavy. I noticed when I was wearing it, and everyone who held it commented on the weight. That might simply be a function of how unfamiliar watches have become..."

"In the first of many moments where the Watch felt underpowered, I found that the screen lit up a couple of ticks too slowly: I’d raise my wrist, wait a beat, and then the screen would turn on..."

"I was half-hoping to put on the Watch in the morning and use it instead of my phone, but that didn’t happen. I grab my phone first thing in the morning and use it nonstop to prepare for the day...It becomes far more valuable once you’re on the move."

"But you simply can’t one-hand the Apple Watch. It’s the simplest thing, but it’s true: because it’s a tiny screen with a tiny control wheel strapped to your wrist, you have to use both hands to use it, and you have to actually look at it to make sure you’re hitting the right parts of the screen..."

"If you’re not a believer in all of Apple’s apps and services, the Apple Watch is going to be a little frustrating until developers build more support for it..."

"It does a fine job of controlling an iPhone, but as a dedicated music player it leaves a lot to be desired..."

"Apple Pay is my favorite part of the entire Watch, a little blast from the future..."

"there’s virtually nothing I can’t do faster or better with access to a laptop or a phone except perhaps check the time. It’s not just the small screen or the quick in-and-out interaction design, it’s actual slowness, particularly when it comes to loading data off the phone..."

"out of the box right now, the Apple Watch is a very expensive, barebones fitness tracker..."

"There’s no question that the Apple Watch is the most capable smartwatch available today. It is one of the most ambitious products I’ve ever seen; it wants to do and change so much about how we interact with technology. But that ambition robs it of focus: it can do tiny bits of everything, instead of a few things extraordinarily well. For all of its technological marvel, the Apple Watch is still a smartwatch, and it’s not clear that anyone’s yet figured out what smartwatches are actually for..."

New York Times

"It took three days — three long, often confusing and frustrating days — for me to fall for the Apple Watch. But once I fell, I fell hard..."

"The Apple Watch is far from perfect, and, starting at $350 and going all the way up to $17,000, it isn’t cheap..."

"to a degree unusual for a new Apple device, the Watch is not suited for tech novices..."

"The Watch is just useful enough to prove that the tech industry’s fixation on computers that people can wear may soon bear fruit..."

"the most exciting thing about the Apple Watch isn’t the device itself, but the new tech vistas that may be opened by the first mainstream wearable computer..."

"There is no full on-screen keyboard, so outbound messages are confined to a set of default responses, emoji and, when you’re talking to other Watch users, messages that you can draw or tap. The Watch also relies heavily on voice dictation and the voice assistant Siri, which is more useful on your wrist than on your phone, but still just as hit-or-miss."

"Finding nirvana with the watch involves adjusting your notification settings on your phone so that your wrist does not constantly buzz with information that doesn’t make sense on the Watch"

"Third-party apps are mostly useless right now..."

"What’s most thrilling about the Apple Watch, unlike other smartwatches I’ve tried, is the way it invests a user with a general sense of empowerment..."


"the Apple Watch is an excellent, elegant, stylish, smart and fundamentally sound device..."

"Apple Watch can operate as a hyper-accurate timepiece on its own, but there is real magic when it’s paired with your iPhone..."

"I often found that new apps took forever to install, and they then worked sporadically..."

"The Watch can also hold music. You can select what playlist will live on the watch through the utility app — up to 2 GB — and then play directly to any paired Bluetooth device..."

"Battery life may have been the best surprise of all. Almost every single day I used the Apple Watch, I ended the day with at least 30% power left — even when I turned up the brightness to 100%..."

"The Apple Watch is that breakout star. It’s gorgeous, smart, fun, extensible, expensive (a plus if you want to telegraph luxury and excellence) and an object of true desire."


"The Apple watch is many things. It’s a timepiece, a fitness tracker, and a compact billboard for incoming messages, mail, and phone calls. If you have the right credit card and you’re at the right kind of shop, you can pay for things by waving your wrist with it. It runs very, very tiny apps and games..."

"The Apple Watch is much smaller, sleeker, and more beautiful than any other smartwatch. Small is so important. It’s the difference between wearing jewelry and strapping on a little phone..."

"the fact (is) that the average person pulls out his phone 100 times a day. This watch, like all smartwatches, serves as a gatekeeper, a filter. You can glance at your wrist, discreetly and briefly, to see why your phone is trying to get your attention. When you’re in a meeting or in transit, a lot of communiqués aren’t so urgent that you have to deal with them now. With a smartwatch, you can take a peek before committing to hauling out your phone..."

"Most of the time, the screen of the watch is dark, to save power. When you lift your arm, it wakes quickly, showing the time. It goes dark again the instant you drop your arm..."

"You can scroll with your finger on the touchscreen. But Apple has also provided a knob on the side — a digital crown, they call it — that you can use for zooming and scrolling..."

"The watch communicates with the iPhone over Bluetooth — and Wi-Fi..And here’s a surprising feature that Apple hasn’t said anything about previously: When the watch is in a known Wi-Fi hotspot, the watch can perform the most essential online functions even when your phone is completely dead, turned off, or absent. It can query Siri, for example, send and receive texts, and send/receive drawings and tap patterns to other watch owners. That’s impressive."

"You tap buttons and icons on the screen. You can also force-press things...Force-pressing is like right-clicking: it opens up additional options, like the Flag, Unread, and Trash buttons for an email message you’re reading."

"You can control your phone’s music playback from one of the Glances (play, pause, skip). But the Remote app lets you control your computer’s iTunes playback, or navigate an Apple TV..."

"The watch’s motion sensor (accelerometer) knows every time you take a step, but it doesn’t know how far that step has taken you. But if you start out your watch ownership by going for a run with your phone, which does have GPS, the watch correlates your number of steps (and frequency) with the distance you’re covering.

In other words, the watch soon learns how much distance you cover with each footstep — it even differentiates between quicker footsteps and slower ones. Thereafter, it can calculate the distance you’ve run all by itself. That is slick.

And, of course, while you’re out running, you’re listening to music on Bluetooth headphones. Without your phone."

"Apple is right about one thing: You’ll have to charge this thing every night..."

"This means, however, that you won’t be wearing the watch at night. That’s a much bigger problem than anybody seems to be acknowledging.

For one thing, that fact makes the Apple Watch the only fitness tracker on the market that can’t track your sleep. One of the great joys of the Up band, Fitbit, and other bands is that they track not just your steps, but also your cycles of deep and light sleep. Not the watch. For a device so thoroughly designed to help monitor your physical well-being, that omission is a heartbreaker."

"The Apple Watch is light-years better than any of the feeble, clunky efforts that have come before it..."

"In the end..the Apple Watch is, above all, a satisfying indulgence. It’s a luxury. You might buy it to bring you pleasure — and it will — much the way you might buy a really nice car, some really nice clothes, or a really nice entrée."

Vox - The 8 big takeaways from the first Apple Watch reviews

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