3 things I didn’t know about the Apple Watch

After one week wearing the Apple Watch, I can reaffirm my comments on why I believe it will be a success. It may not be the first smartwatch to reach the market, nor the most complete in terms of features, but one thing is clear: Apple has done what it does best, create a simple but delightful experience with a product category that other competitors have already tried mastering.

I had read tons of articles and reviews before getting an Apple Watch of my own, and yet this first week I discovered a few things, good and bad, that surprised me. These are the top 3:

1. I can dictate messages on my preferred languages

This is a very simple feature technically speaking, but it’s key for anyone who deals with different languages on their phone.

I write messages in both English and Spanish, and iOS remembers which keyboard language I use with each contact; guess who else uses that memory? the Apple Watch is able to automatically understand the proper language when I dictate a message to any of my friends with my voice. It feels like magic, really.

2. It charges fast, very fast

Ah, battery life issues, I bet in 20 years we’ll read these words and we’ll say “remember when battery life was a thing to worry about?” But we are not there yet and the Apple Watch doesn’t last longer than 2 days (I don’t run with it and I don’t hold long conversations with it as if I was Michael Knight).

Nonetheless, I realized that 30 minutes are enough to charge its battery back to almost 100% (I go to sleep with around 55-60% of battery on a week day). I don’t like to sleep with the Watch on, but it bothers me leaving the Watch charging over night anyway (old dog habits), so this charging speed is just what I need.

3. Glances cannot take longer than 5 seconds

Glances are like desktop widgets: small and quick snippets of information provided by some app… except that they are not that quick on the Apple Watch. The screen turns off automatically after ~6 seconds of no interaction unless you are inside an app. Glances are not apps by themselves (just part of the watch face app), so if your glance takes longer than 5 seconds to load, too bad!

Third party apps that simply show text are usually OK (sometimes even Twitter takes too long), but a Transit app that needs to get your GPS location and find the bus stops around you… is simply too much. Hopefully, this will improve on the Watch 2, once native apps become a reality.

In summary, the Apple Watch is a solid first iteration and while I’m very happy with it, anyone expecting a flawless product should definitely wait for next year’s version.

Image via Apple

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