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Slashdot Asks: It's Been a Year Since Apple Watch Release, What's Your Thought On It? 359

In an op-ed, Quartz's Mike Murphy writes that Apple Watch, the Cupertino-based company's first wearable device, hasn't been the success the company was hoping it to be. Apple unveiled the Apple Watch alongside the iPhone 6 at a media conference in September 2014. It wasn't, however, until April 2015 that the company began selling it. The Apple Watch has received a mixed response from people. While some have found the design premium-looking, almost everyone has complained about the battery life. Many have found the health-centric features of Apple Watch useful. though the lack of apps, in general, is a downer for many. Apple, which usually doesn't miss boasting sales number, remains tight-lipped on exactly how many Apple Watch units it has sold. Murphy writes: Every Apple product in the last 15 years or so has been two things: desirable and useful. They've made it easier for people to be creative, listen to a lot of music on the go, communicate with anyone in the world or find out any piece of information wherever they are. The Apple Watch looks good, but from a desirability perspective, some argue that the most interesting thing about it has been the collaborations it has had with Hermes, rather than the watch itself. Apple has always prided itself on 'thinking different', and has stood out by creating differentiating products. But different in the case of the Apple Watch right now just means "weird." Apple probably doesn't want a product where using one gets you referred to as "that guy." Do you own an Apple Watch? If not, are you planning to purchase one? Those who own it, what features do you like in the Apple Watch that you think other watches cannot offer.
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Slashdot Asks: It's Been a Year Since Apple Watch Release, What's Your Thought On It?

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  • by HalAtWork ( 926717 ) on Monday April 11, 2016 @09:03AM (#51883481)

    I still don't want anything on my wrist. It's an interesting remote control but doesn't have that killer app/functionality you get with other apple products.

    • I gave up on wearing a watch many years ago. Inevitably they get scraped against a wall (etc) and damaged. Bad enough when it's a 20-dollar cheap-o, let alone a "wrist computer" that cost hundreds. In a city like Taipei, you're never very far from a display of some kind, and there's always the cell phone if you're in a hurry to find out what time it is.

      I've never seen an Apple Watch in real life, so they don't seem that popular, at least not around here.

      • by HalAtWork ( 926717 ) on Monday April 11, 2016 @10:06AM (#51883871)

        For me I gave up on watches upon noticing: when I am constantly aware of the time, I tend to focus more on management of tasks than the tasks themselves. Instead I'd rather just set alarms for myself and never see the time. On my phone it doesn't show the time unless I specifically call up the clock app. The last thing I even want a watch for is to tell time, but with all the different things the watch does I still don't think it's such a brilliant alternative to pulling a rectangle out of my pocket. If I don't have the hands/time to do that, then I can't really be focusing on a watch face for info either. Personally no wrist things help me do anything better.

        • by IMightB ( 533307 )

          I'm not trying to denigrate your comment in anyway, but turning 40 this year, and being one of the original generation that grew up on the original home computers (TI99-4a), and pagers were the cool thing in high school. I find your comment regarding having to "pull a rectangle out of my pocket" to be very funny/sad/ironic/humorous.

      • by chihowa ( 366380 )

        Inevitably they get scraped against a wall (etc) and damaged. Bad enough when it's a 20-dollar cheap-o, let alone a "wrist computer" that cost hundreds.

        This is something that can be eliminated/mitigated with a better design and choice of construction materials. Sapphire lenses and good overall design will prevent damage from contact with all but the most extreme walls. You don't get that with a $20 watch, but anything over $100 should use better materials. I think (?) that the Apple watch has a sapphire lens.

        I wear a watch because I have since I was a kid and I appreciate not pulling my phone out of my pocket to tell the time, but it's not a flashy piece o

    • At the moment the apple watch is a cool toy but in the future it will be more. For now if I wanted to be more info stimulation I'd certainly strap on this Digital Ben Wa Ball. Each ping, boop, or glance triggering a dopamine release.

      But in the future some time there's going to be a tonne of uses for this. If my house becomes an internet of things then I don't want to fish in my pocket for my phone or talk out loud like a street corner preacher to my google glass. I want a device that instantly accessibl

  • by clickety6 ( 141178 ) on Monday April 11, 2016 @09:05AM (#51883509)
    I thought I'd look cool like Dick Tracy when using it, but instead I just looked like a dick.
  • ...even if I had the money to spare to buy an Apple watch I can't really see why I would need one.
  • though the lack of apps, in general, is a downer for many Apple, which usually doesn't miss boasting sales number, remains tight-lipped on exactly how many Apple Watch units it has sold.

    Apart from the bad grammar here, I wonder if the lack of apps is because Apple hasn't released sales figures. If a developer doesn't know the size of the market, the developer can't calculate how many people might try an app and thus can't estimate return on investment. The same is true of, for example, clip-on gamepads for phones. Companies make games for PlayStation Vita instead of iOS-with-gamepad or Android-with-gamepad because Sony at least releases sales figures that are credibly greater than zero.

    • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

      The lack of apps is because of the battery. Battery life was disappointing when it launched, and poor quality apps could easily make it far worse. So Apple decided to severely restrict what apps could do and then vet them more carefully and iOS ones.

    • Apart from the bad grammar here, I wonder if the lack of apps is because Apple hasn't released sales figures. If a developer doesn't know the size of the market, the developer can't calculate how many people might try an app and thus can't estimate return on investment.

      If Watch apps had been a good ROI, the early adopter devs would have made more apps and word would have spread. They don't need Apple to tell them how well their apps are doing or how much they're being used.

  • One Day (Score:5, Interesting)

    by techmage ( 72232 ) <jlatrell@pho3.14 ... minus pi> on Monday April 11, 2016 @09:13AM (#51883539) Homepage

    The Apple Watch looks good and one day I hope to have one. Waiting for gen 2 or 3 before I commit.

    Still rocking my original iPad though.

  • wasn't interested in the Apple Watch last year, still am not interested, and I'm their demographic. I own many apple products and have disposable income. I just have no interest in ANY watch, let alone one that bugs the hell out of me because I told it to do so.
  • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus ( 1223518 ) on Monday April 11, 2016 @09:17AM (#51883557) Journal
    I'm certainly not Apple's core market, so I don't expect Tim to be crying into his beer over this; but in what is probably the least-favorable outcome for Apple(and 'smartwatch' in general); I basically don't have any thoughts on it. Depending on how you prefer to phrase it, it's been out for only a year and it has already dropped below even occasional attention without explicit prompts like this one; or it's been out for an entire year and failed to attract much in the way of visible fans, foes, nor has it carved out any niche applications where it is considered an absolute must-have.

    Normally, that's not how Apple products work: there is often a sharp and bitter divide between those who love and those who loath; but people care one way or the other. The watch? It's just 'meh.'
  • by mgoheen ( 244365 ) on Monday April 11, 2016 @09:21AM (#51883579) Journal
    I bought my wife one at release. She is a big Mac user (iPhone since the iPhone 3, 4th Macbook, 2nd iMac) and although I wasn't sure about it, it seemed like a good present (it's jewelry AND tech.!). She has really tried it out as a USER, but it's a bit too difficult to really get into some of the features. She does like the health monitoring, but it really doesn't work very well at that. It doesn't seem to get her heart rate right much of the time, and it is vastly off base with her steps (it seems to totally not understand an elliptical). The ability to answer the phone is kinda ok...and she does use that occasionally, but with integrated bluetooth in her car, which would be the one time she might really use it, it ends up not being needed. She wears it only occasionally, and we may sell it. She does really like the butterflies.
  • I upgraded from a watch to a pager in 1993. I upgraded from a pager to a smartphone in 2006. I have no need for a watch -- unless Apple were to deliver glucose monitoring abilities -- but Tim Cook said he wants it to be adjacent to medical devices in order to avoid the lengthy FDA approval for medical devices.

  • by CrankyFool ( 680025 ) on Monday April 11, 2016 @09:21AM (#51883583)

    You've already seen a plethora of comments slamming the idea of an expensive smartwatch (or in some cases slamming the idea of a wristwatch entirely). I'm a huge Smartwatch fan -- I spend virtually all my day in meetings, often not being able to use my laptop (tells you all you need to know about my job, I suppose). I was using a Pebble for years before my spouse got me an LG G Watch. Then a year later my spouse got me an Olio and as soon as I verified that it couldn't make it more than about 10 hours without needing recharging, I returned it.

    When I got the LG G Watch, I made peace with the idea of charging my watch every day, which felt a bit blasphemous to begin with, but ... no big deal. I already charge my phone every day (though it's a bit annoying that there are practically no standardized Smartwatch charging standards). I just needed it to last until I go to bed at night, which is where the Olio failed.

    These days, I'm using a big, chunky, Huawei Watch ( which I like quite a bit and makes it to bedtime with about 60% charge remaining.

    So why not the Apple Watch? Simple -- I'm more interested in continuing to use my Android phone than I am using the Apple Watch. Apple, in an attempt to create a vertically integrated stack and bolster up the iPhone (or maybe just because they're lazy), has made their watch only work with the iPhone.

    • Same boat here.

      I bought the Huawei watch a couple months ago, but only wear it when going out. I can't stand leaving my phone on the bar; I think it looks silly and of course there's always the risk of theft if you turn your back too long. But, I'm on call, and friends often message me looking to meet up, so I do need some method of notification.

      Smartwatches work perfectly for this. I leave my phone in my pocket, and get a little buzz on the wrist if something comes up.

  • by tom229 ( 1640685 ) on Monday April 11, 2016 @09:25AM (#51883599)
    I've only known like two people that have them and they are overly eager to tell me how wonderful they are. A surefire sign of latent buyer's remorse.
  • Sounds stupid to me. I already have a phone to tell me the time and show notifications.

  • by martyros ( 588782 ) on Monday April 11, 2016 @09:26AM (#51883609)

    My wife works for Apple, and at the end of last year they had a deal to allow Apple employees to buy an Apple Watch for nearly half the retail price. She didn't really want one, so she bought one for me.

    TLDR: Definitely useful, but I doubt I would pay full price to replace it.

    The biggest feature for me, actually, is the notifications. Basically, with just a phone, you have the choice between cranking up the volume on notifications and having them be super-loud when you're in a quiet environment, or turning them down and miss missing them if you're in a loud environment. The watch has a dynamo that actually taps your wrist when you get a notification; so you're likely to notice it no matter how loud the environment is, but in a quiet environment the sound isn't too disruptive. (When I mention this to people they say, "But I wouldn't want to get notified all the time" -- no of course you don't, that's why you limit the notifications to only things you actually care about.) The notification aspect is handy when you're driving as well -- it gives you a little tap before you're supposed to turn to "wake you up".

    The watch faces are pretty cool, with lots of pretty well thought-out features. It's nice being able, for example, to see what the temperature is like outside by just glancing at your wrist; and with the 2.2 update there's a watch face that cycles through photos from a designated photo album, so every time I look at the time I see photos of something that makes me happy.

    The heart-rate monitor is pretty useful, but it seems like it's only mainly accurate for aerobic sports -- when I'm weightlifting it will often report obviously incorrect numbers (like, 40 BPM after I've just done a set of lifts and am breathing heavy).

    The timer is quite handy, particularly with the "Hey Siri" feature -- "Hey Siri, set a timer for 5 mintues". The "Hey Siri" functionality is quite useful in a number of other situations as well: "Hey Siri, remind me when I get home to put the garbage out."

    The Dick Tracy-style phone is a bit gimmicky, IMHO -- it's actually quite uncomfortable to try to talk to someone with your wrist held in front of you. It's almost always worth the 3 seconds of effort to just pull the phone out of my pocket / bag instead.

    The awkwardness of holding up your wrist for long periods is the reason I don't use many of the other apps as well -- stocks, weather, browsing maps -- most things are much better just done by taking out your phone.

    All in all, I'm glad I have it; and if it was like $150 I'd definitely recommend people buy it. But at the current price, it's a bit steep for what it provides.

    • by whistl ( 234824 )

      I have a gold Pebble Time Steel, and people are always asking me if this is an Apple Watch. I just tell them no, it's a Pebble, which is cheaper, the battery lasts 7 days, instead of 1, and Pebble has been around for years. It doesn't have the touch screen, but nobody cares about that useless feature anyway.

      I'm addicted to wrist notifications, I can easily read short texts or see who is calling (and answer or send them to voice mail) without digging my iPhone out of my pocket. Great when you have a bluetoo

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by sh00z ( 206503 )

      Seems like a good place for a "me too" post--I got mine for free ~6 months ago, and everything the parent post mentions is great. I also use the fitness tracker, and the best thing it does is (automatically) store data for running and cycling in the same place. Previously, I used an iPod Nano for running, so run data was in Nike+. I have a Polar bike computer/HRM, so all of that data was in their system. It took manual transfers to get it all into the same database. Now it's automatic.

      The disadvantage? Wh

    • I feel the same way about the watch - it's great for notifications. I keep my next calendar appointment on the face, which is also handy. It's incredibly overpriced for the utility it provides. I like a fashionable watch but I feel like this watch is anything but fashionable. As far as apps: Apple approached my company and asked us to develop some cool watch apps prior to the watch release. Every single useful idea we came up with was rejected because they planned to eventually release their own app t

    • Yup, like your review. I bought one for my wife last year and realized that she's not having to cary her phone around the house. I picked one up and realized that the major feature of this device isn't the watch or apps but the fact that it's an extension of my phones notification system. I need to stay connected to my phone for various work reasons, and find myself not looking at the phone nearly as much as i used to.

      I'm surprised that more people don't pick up on this. the bummer is it seems that the

  • Lame (Score:4, Funny)

    by 110010001000 ( 697113 ) on Monday April 11, 2016 @09:31AM (#51883617) Homepage Journal
    No wireless. Less space than a Nomad. Lame.
  • I'm the proud owner of a 4-6day bettery-lasting Charge HR, with daily 1 to 1:30h activities/training sessions (which monitors HR every 3), with the whole 9 yards activated: sleep monitor ON; Heart Rate ON (as opposed to auto); call notifications On (with encryption); all day sync; always connected. I even have a daily silent alarms which I let ring to full most times. Every option is super battery optimized even with their warnings, and if any of these does affect performance, they're probably "all day sync

  • I've been generally happy with mine, and in spite of the couple of times I've become annoyed enough to switch back to the old watch, I've always come back to it after a short time. My biggest beef has been with the pulse monitoring--it's accuracy has been unpredictable enough to make it worthless for me. I don't even bother tracking it in the Health app any more. I'm hoping newer technology in a future model will fix the problem.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 11, 2016 @09:35AM (#51883637)

    I admit, it's getting harder and harder, but walled gardens are bad.

    The last time I owned an iOS device was the ipad2. It was astonishingly limited. Couldn't share the storage on the network, couldn't use anything other than iTunes to load files onto the device, and even then you could only load files into defined buckets that apps create. Couldn't read any file off an sdcard unless it was jpeg. Couldn't upload or download arbitrary files from the internet.

    I mean, this is not something that "just works". It doesn't in fact, "just work". It barely works at all. I was able to get some functionality out of it by jail breaking. It's currently running ios7, so maybe these complaints are out dated now? Probably not. I have no idea why I would want to buy a watch, or anything of any brand or functionality, that is locked down and prevents you from doing whatever you want with it.

    It's sadly becoming harder to do this.

  • Niche market (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Gilgaron ( 575091 ) on Monday April 11, 2016 @09:36AM (#51883641)
    My wife has had workout GPS watches and was very excited for the latest Garmin smartwatch, but found it frustrating in use and featureset. The screen was also not as nice as she was hoping. She ended up exchanging it for the Apple watch and enjoys it. She did look sort of crazy when testing it out, wearing it and her old GPS watch to see how accurate it was and all. She'd been carrying her phone for music anyhow, so that it required a smartphone for full functionality wasn't ideal for all situations but worked for her. The biggest downside is probably battery life: the old style Garmin GPS watches can be forgotten in a drawer for months and still have enough charge to be used for a weeklong camping/hiking trip, whereas she generally charges the Apple watch each evening. The most useful feature for me is that the watch can ping her phone so she no longer needs help finding it every 4 minutes. Unlike younger folks, I actually almost always wear a watch but I've not felt compelled to get a smart watch myself.
  • by Feneric ( 765069 ) on Monday April 11, 2016 @09:38AM (#51883655) Homepage
    It's much better for health apps than a Fitbit. Its running / walking exercise app in particular is really well thought out. Its map app is great for walking, too. Little details like the four steady beats for turning right and the four beats in a heartbeat pattern for turning left really make it stand out. The calendar interface is also decent. Some of the other apps still need more work; I'd like more mail options, for one.
    • I disagree. There isn't a single feature of my Charge HR I haven't come to appreciate because it wouldn't be matched by features and usability with smartphone interaction. I can't say the same for an iWatch - every feature the Charge HR does'nt match the iWatch, I would rather do on the smartphone or even a PC. And that's the potential value of a wrist wearable, and indirectly the iWatch problem. When you take the toll of "wearing" something, you have to extract the pros of its usability versus the con of a

  • I saw some of them around and the last time I asked someone about theirs they all told me the same thing. It doesn't really work as well as a phone. It has poor desktop real estate and what they really need at a minimum is a phone/phablet.

  • They've had quite a few products that were total market failures. I loved my Newton, especially the 130 with that cool backlight, I wanted a Pippin (console collaboration with Bandai), the original Apple TV (an all-in-one-Perfiorma with a black case and a TV Tuner card), etc. were complete failures in the market. Even in the Jobs era the new Apple TV was described by Cook as a "hobby" rather then a product. The G4 cube was incredibly cool-looking, but also more then a bit useless.

    I'm sure they'd prefer to s

    • No Mac fan either, but TFS added "in the pas 15 years". Too lazy to look up the release dates of the products you mention but I think they're mostly if not all pre-iPod, which was the first in a long range of commercial successes for Apple.

  • As a first-gen product, I figured I'd wait for a revision.

    I think I was right. Colleagues got one but mention that lots of functions don't always just work. Examples they give, are: notifications come in very late, 30 minutes to several hours later. When you check the time, the watch usually wakes up but not always (it only wakes up 100% of the time when you make a sort of shake or special move). And they mention slowness: even the default apps appear sluggish. For lots of 3rd party apps, it's so slow that

  • My thoughts (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 11, 2016 @09:46AM (#51883721)

    My previous watch was a Traser, purchased at a similar price point as the (very slightly used) Apple Watch Sport I currently have.
    Pros (Traser):
    ~3 years battery time
    Relatively unobtrusive "always on" light (H3 capsules)

    Pros (Apple Watch):
    Silent notifications that I never miss - even when I forget the phone in the other end of my house.
    Never having to set the time (even a good Quartz watch will eventually go out of sync with the real world).
    Activity rings (even after several months of ownership I still move a lot more than I did before, and I get regular reminders that keep this behavior up. My changed moving behavior has in turn affected my eating behavior so I'm down 5 kg compared to before getting the watch (I wasn't spectacularly fat to begin with, but now I'm getting lean)).
    I can control my most used media players from my wrist.
    Not having to surreptitiously fish my phone out of the pocket in the store to check my shopping list.

    Both watches can be rinsed in water but shouldn't be subjected to diving or fast pressure changes (I have an old Casio beater for that).
    I have never had less than 40% battery left when I put my watch on the charger for the night - battery time was what I was most afraid of before I purchased the watch, but that hasn't been an issue at all.

    To be honest I don't use many apps on the phone, and no third-party apps at all on my Watch, but for what I have it do for me, it has been great. What I most like about it isn't that it changes anything radically, but rather that it makes a few very common tasks a little more convenient.

    The only thing I'll do differently the next time around is that I'll go for the stainless steel/sapphire glass version to get a more resilient case, since I wear the watch at pretty much all times when awake.

  • by ITRambo ( 1467509 ) on Monday April 11, 2016 @09:49AM (#51883751)
    With daily charging required, the Apple watch is impracticable for many people. If a charge lasted as least one week, I believe there would be more takers.
    • Wouldn't daily charging be better the weekly charging. With daily charging you just put it in a charger every night when you take it off to go to sleep. With weekly charging you would have to remember once a week it is time to charge it and half the time you would forget and it would die on you.

      Ideally it should be daily or never (like my old digital watch with a solar panel).

  • Ok, so the wristwatch was more practical than the pocket watch in its time. But once I realized I carried my time-telling phone at all times anyway, I was relieved to ditch the damn steampunk contrivance, and never looked back.

    When a smartwatch can fully replace the smartphone (probably combination with ambient computing) it might stand a decent chance in the market. By then they will probably have solved the bulkyness as well.
    But until then, smartwatches will remain a niche product, because for most people

  • ... which was about as expensive twenty years ago, when I bought it, as an Apple Watch is now.

    Every four years, it needs its battery changed. And that's all.

    'Smart' watches are a bit like DAB radio, or, in their day, WAP phones. They're not horrendously expensive, but the user experience is just so much worse than the technology it replaces that no-one's going to buy it. I don't want to take my watch off and recharge it every night. And there is no 'killer app' that I've seen so far that is better on a wris

  • I'm a tech enthusiast.

    I got a gaming PC with two screen, LG G3 cellphone (for 200 bucks on the second hand market from a mom whose son wanted a iPhone, best value for money imo), a roku, a Nest thermostat and a lot of tech stuff, you get the picture.

    Still, I couldn't smell any of those Smartwatch because of a simple point, it fail at what it's supposed to be : "a watch".

    I mean, a watch that you need to "wake up" to see the time? Something that you need to plug in every night? And worst, something that look

  • Frankly, I haven't. I concluded that it was pointless junk, and haven't given it a second thought since.

  • by ripvlan ( 2609033 ) on Monday April 11, 2016 @10:10AM (#51883907)

    I've had the watch several months - since the fall of 2015. So far - I'm not sure I need it. My calculation also includes cost and features of competing devices - including plain old watches. I keep telling myself "I'm first - this is an experiment - watch and learn - maybe it will be something cool." Short version - cool concept but not worth the money. Poor battery, poor apps, poor interface mode.

    What I do like - having notifications and information right on my arm without needing to pull my (ever increasingly large) phone out of my pocket (and soon probably a napsack). Being able to quickly be alerted or acknowledge a text is nice. Monitoring my health activity (have I exercised this week?) is a nice nag. And I'll admit the Dick Tracy phone call on the arm has been unexpectedly useful. Bending your arm and taking 2 second to decided if the alert requires action is fabulous "we're waiting in lobby upstairs" - great. "reminder to pay bill (tonight)" oh thanks - almost forgot, "Twitter says multiple people retweeted same photo" - yeah Ignore.

    Siri on the arm has been less than useful. Usually goes, "okay Siri ...okay Siri...OKAY Siri" (nothing)... ohh oops It's "Hey Siri" (sorry Dave - I'm not available right now). Most become "Please unlock and continue operation on iPhone." Apps on the watch are lame (and can't use Siri) - most are just extensions of the notification bar. "new podcast available" -- so what!? Twitter is lame because they notify you that "a friend liked a post" -- also ...who cares?! The arm is becoming a noise source. I'd like higher signal. I find myself uninstalling apps or turning off notifications. Even a pizza company has an app - but it doesn't show Progress. Just silly text - but the website has a progress tracker (Order recvs, making item, in oven, out for delivery). That would be a cool watch app (we order pizza for the baby sitter when we decide to stay out later). I think most are lame because the available UI is limited.

    Imagine having the iOS Notification bar on your arm. Like many of you, I've turned off most notifications because there is always a notification somewhere on this planet being routed to my phone (ding - Notification that a notification is available). But the default mode of the watch and most apps are no better - if anything more noise and less signal. Google Inbox uses many characters to show message date/time/from/subject which leaves little space for the actual email. I was at the museum with friends and we'd all text "we're at the fish tank, heading to dinosaurs" and I could simply look at my arm -- Yup, got it!! Headed that way now. Didn't need to press buttons. Just done. got it. move on.

    Which brings me back to...WTF is this thing supposed to do? Tell me the time? $30 Timex does that. What else? Text messages - yeah that's cool. Health monitor ? okay but can't swim with the watch ($30 Timex is water resistant to 10atm). Rubber Band on the basic sport model stinks - only $200 to replace it with a metal one. Bands for the $30 Timex cost ~$20. Can't wear it to the beach. So it isn't a watch replacement. Okay - Not a Watch.

    Plus having battery charge anxiety at the end of the day. $30 Timex is still using the same battery it came with 6 years ago.

    So why am I paying $400 for a device that can't replace a $30 Timex? $400 buys a very nice plain old watch - Solar powered, dive watch, deflects bullets. Seriously - if a high end watch company came out with a watch that showed text messages it would put an end to Apple Watch.

    If it cost under $100 my ROI would be justified. A useful toy. I fear this may be another Newton.

  • Honestly, have not heard much about it lately!
  • I get that a wrist-computer with connection to your pocket computer with connection to the intarwebs can be a total gamechanger - especially as a health-tracker, if it has the approriate sensors on board that fit your health-condition.

    However, as far as watches go, I don't see the point of smartwatches these days. They are decades behind regular electronic watches. If I would need a watch, I'd buy one of those. For instance: For little more than 100 Euros you can get a Casio G-Shock that is solar powered, r

  • No Apple watch, I could never justify the cost.

    The best watch I ever had was a Casio Wave-ceptor. It cost about $100, was solar powered, and got its time from radio signals. It never needed a battery (till it finally died), never needed setting. Unfortunately, it had this really cheap metal band that actually wore through in spots, and because it was specific to the watch, couldn't be replaced. I've still got it, it works after a fashion, but the little capacitor/battery finally needed replacing and the

  • Got the cheap one at launch. It's been neat and for a limited number of things it's been handy but it really hasn't revolutionized my life or anything. I'm really really glad I didn't buy one of the more expensive ones.

  • I've been wearing mine every day for 11 months and I like it. IMHO, if you don't wear one its hard to understand its utility. Other than aesthetics, resist the urge to criticize it if you don't have personal experience. Its one of the better "version 1" tech products I've tried. That said, it certainly not for everyone and there is a hell of a lot of room for improvement.

    It has encouraged me to be more active
    It has had a dramatic impact on using reminders - I rarely forget to do things on time now
  • I paid less than $20 for my CASIO watch. It shows me the time and it has a 10 year battery life. Smart.

  • by joelsherrill ( 132624 ) on Monday April 11, 2016 @10:54AM (#51884249) Homepage

    I have had an LG Urbane for almost a year. It was a gift from my wife and kids for my birthday. I don't think I ever would have purchased a smart watch on my own but I have really enjoyed it. I have a lot on my work schedule and the notifications are very handy. The directions on my wrist are appreciated especially when walking so I don't have to stare at my phone and look lost. I find it handy to leave my phone on my desk and not have to carry it to get notifications. In general, as someone else said, the extra source of notifications is very useful. There are other applications but personally I didn't invest much effort after I realized I couldn't reliably press the tiny buttons on the calculator applications.

    When other people see it light up for a notification, I often get the "is it an iWatch" question. I politely explain that Apple isn't the only company that makes smart watches. The LG Urbane is a round faced watch which actually looks like a nice men's watch. It isn't gimmicky looking. It feels comparable in weight to the Seiko Titanium watch it replaced. It will last about 36 hours on a charge for me but I charge it every night. I show them the features and they usually come away impressed.

    If you want a status symbol or expect a magical capability, then you will be disappointed. At Apple prices, a smart watch is a very questionable purchase. But the feature/price ratio is better on the Android side. Plus you have more choice on style.

  • Besides the on-again, off-again Apple hate on Slashdot, there's the fact that most geeks don't want a watch at all. Like, not even a "geeky" watch, which is why Android Wear devices don't sell. It's why even when Samsung beat Apple to market on the watch, with a cheaper device, they still got their asses handed to them on sales. Apple won't reveal numbers of course but it's rumored they've sold 10-12 million Apple Watches, 2M on the first weekend alone

    There's also the very odd fit between gadget prices an
  • Apple is good at releasing things a little ahead of their time. You may think that sounds like a "just too awesome" humblebrag but hear me out.

    When Apple announced the iPhone people thought they were crazy. The cell phone market was saturated. Apple at the time was a second string computer company with a successful MP3 player. People figured they were in no way going to be able to compete. And a lot of the initial success of the phone was attributed to marketing and the cult-like status of Apple devotees.
  • So I do like mechanical watches and have a few of them, some vintage, some recent, none really expensive. I find those small movements utterly charming. I always wear a watch, for me a phone never replaced it.
    Then I received a stainless AW as an xmas gift from my wife and I must say that after initial doubts i found it really useful and pleasant. I currently wear it often during working days and business trips, my mechanicals are mainly worn in weekends now.
    Battery life is not really an issue for me, it w
  • Whenever a new piece of technology comes out, there's always a transition period involved in figuring out what works on it. When the web came out companies tried to make "virtual shopping experiences", complete with 3D models of stores with products on shelves, for online shopping. They flopped. The Amazon model of just having a webpage per product worked. Early iPad apps were lame because the developers just made their iPhone apps bigger to fill the screen size instead of using the screen effectively. And early Apple Watch apps trying to just squeeze their iPhone apps down to a smaller screen are doomed to fail too (looking at you, Twitter).

    So consequently figuring out what makes sense on a Watch screen is going to be the real hurdle to overcome. All kinds of information could be handy on a small screen. A lot of people decry the Watch by saying "why not just save your money and pull out your phone?" but I think one day we'll be saying "why pull out your phone when you could just look down at your watch?"

    My company's app has a lot of info for our employees and customers. But there was some info our CFO wanted to know on a fairly regular basis and he didn't want to log into some web site to see it. Or some app. He would instead pester someone to run a SQL query for him. So I added a Watch complication to our app. It puts these numbers on the screen for him. He can use Time Travel with the digital crown to go back throughout the day. He can drill down to the actual app and refresh on demand to his hearts content (Complications are only refreshed on a particular budget). He loves it. And the people who used to have to be pestered for it love me for putting it on his watch screen.

    That's the sort of thing the Watch is good for. Quick pieces of info on demand or refreshing in the background. Instances where it would be easier to glance at your wrist than pull out your phone, unlock it, open an app, etc. Instances where you don't want to walk around with your phone in your hand where it can be bumped out and dropped or stolen. I use the Wallet app on the phone and the 7-11 app to scan my 7-Rewards card barcode and everyone just thinks it's the coolest thing ever even though I feel like a dork doing it. And then it feels incredibly primitive to dig out my wallet to pay when I could just use the watch with Apple Pay except 7-11 doesn't take it.

    I think some day when the right apps are out for it it'll be as vital as our phones.
  • My thoughts? It's a bullshit product marketed to douchebags and suckers with too much money.

    It costs from $500 to $1200, and the ONLY difference is the watchband. That's it.

    It's a useless over-priced gadget that has been a failure with very few units sold.

    Apple doesn't give the numbers but apparently only a few million have been sold, as opposed to 75 million iPhones in the last quarter or so.

  • I'm using it as a fitness tracker. I'm tracking steps with Pedometer++, booking exercise with the exercise app, tracking weight with MyFitnessPal, and seeing the results with a Withings Smart Scale every morning talking to MyFitnessPal. I've lost 12 pounds so far, and I'm motivated now to lose 28 or 38 more. I'm also using it as a sleep tracker.

    It's an excellent companion device for driving. I like the taps on the wrist for directions.

    I like the seamless integration with the Apple ecosystem.

    The battery life

  • by nysus ( 162232 ) on Monday April 11, 2016 @11:30AM (#51884557)

    Things I like:
    1) Notifications on wrist. #1 use of device. Makes it worth the cost.
    2) Super easy to see upcoming events/meetings. I just look at watch face and tap the tap the calendar in the lower right. Brilliant.
    3) Paying with your watch for a coffee at McDonald's. Sometimes I'll just go there to buy a coffee just to impress the people behind the counter.
    4) Looking at temperature and weather at a glance. See #2.
    5) Design is nice.
    7) Health tracking feature.

    1) Most apps are totally worthless. By the time you find and launch an app that does anything useful on your watch, you could have the real deal on your phone. Only the simplest of apps make sense like the stop watch or the timer.
    2) Siri is worthless. It's very unreliable and only good for the simplest of requests.
    3) Taking phone calls on the watch is kind of ridiculous. Very hard to hear what someone is saying unless you are in a quiet room and it's a hassle to hold your arm in the air to talk and listen for any length of time. Again, it's just much easier to whip the phone out. Though I will say it has saved me when phone is in the other room and an important call has come in.
    4) Battery life is a joke if you use the exercise tracking feature over the course of the day. Then you'll be lucky to get to bed with it still charged.
    5) Nothing is more annoying then when you go to look at your watch and it doesn't turn on and you have to tap it with your other hand.

Real programmers don't bring brown-bag lunches. If the vending machine doesn't sell it, they don't eat it. Vending machines don't sell quiche.