My experience with the Apple Watch has been both good and bad.
Being someone who is overly critical of both UI and UX, I simply haven’t found anything in hardware or software to be either confusing or an eye sore. I’m a bit disappointed in raw performance and data accuracy, but those are separate issues that can and should be addressed.
The first iteration is unnecessary and “expensive” for people who do not wish to actively track their personal data – and I expect that with the addition of more sensors, the Apple Watch is going to become more valuable.
Slagging the Apple Watch wholesale because it’s not perfect seems to be the thing to do, but I’m not going to do it. Mind you, it’s still not perfect.
Like Jim Dalyrimple, the Apple Watch has given me personal motivation to do something about my health. It’s not that there was a lack of personal health trackers before the Apple Watch (just the opposite) – it’s that there was a lack of usable personal health trackers that worked well enough for me to wear past a week.
I have to trust that every part of the Activity tracker is accurate – though it’s not always able to catch my pulse, you have to choose the most appropriate exercise in the Workout app for it to record properly, and it always reminds me to stand at 10 ’til even if I’ve been walking around the house for the preceding 20 minutes and having just sat down.
So, even if the stats aren’t 100% perfect – I’m now aware of just how much my heart rate goes up when I do my daily live tech videos for patrons, and I’m back on the glider for 30-45 minutes a day. Months before the Apple Watch was released, I mentioned several times over that I hoped it would help motivate me to lose the weight that I had re-gained over the years.
I’ve struggled with weight gain and loss several times over, promising myself that once I’d lost the fat I’d keep it lost. Obviously, I keep breaking that promise.
Prompting and motivating me to modify my lifestyle is enough for me to consider the Apple Watch a success. Why would I want to return to not knowing, not doing anything (even though I know I needed to do something)?
I’m now able to look at data that I was generating, anyway – and actually take action on that data (or lack thereof).
Will I take the Apple Watch off after I feel I’m back to where I should be in terms of weight? No.
Even before the Apple Watch was a possibility, I thought about using live, interactive video streaming to motivate me to workout daily – but that option was wholly impractical before Meerkat or Periscope were (recently) on the scene.
So, now, with the Apple Watch and Periscope, I’m now streaming my gliding sessions – pushing my heart rate slightly higher by interacting with those who tune in and gathering questions for the day’s AMA video and podcast. Not only does the chat help time fly, but I use it to gather intelligence for the other things I have to do that day.
Thanks to a very imperfect Apple Watch and its companion phone that allows me to get work done while I workout, I’m hoping that this recent change will become a permanent one.
Only time will tell.