Apple Watch – Where does it fall short?

The Apple Watch is one of the most popular wearables on the market and its countless features have made it a favorite among consumers. It’s a great device for staying connected and staying on top of your fitness goals. With the Apple Watch, you can stay connected to your social media accounts, receive notifications about emails and texts, and use apps to monitor your health and fitness.

Apple Watch is a great tool for tracking your fitness progress. You can use its built-in Heart Rate monitor to track your heart rate during exercise, and its Activity app to set goals and track your progress. The Workout app allows you to track your exercise routine, and the Apple Health app helps you keep track of your overall health. You can even use your Apple Watch to monitor your sleep quality and schedule reminders to ensure you’re getting enough rest.

All of the mentioned features have limitations though. The first of which is the simple need to always be wearing a device and the associated battery charge needed to power the device. The fixation on tracking resting heart rate, sleep, and every single workout can lead to it’s own type of mental fatigue. While the reliance on a wearable has not been studied as much, similar reliance on smart phones has been linked to some tough side effects including depression and “laziness”.

Watch Features to Use During a Run or Workout

As an activity tracker the Apple Watch is mainly thought of as a useful device to track calories, time, and distance, but it can be much more than that. A connected watch is also a great way to stay connected with friends and family, even while training. You can make and receive calls, send and receive text messages, and even share your location with others which comes in handy when out on a trail or workout activity. Things like sharing a beacon to help friends find you during a race, or to send a note saying that you are safely back from a treacherous hike can make all the difference.

The Apple Watch also supports Apple Pay, so you can make payments with your watch, that reduces the need to carry cash or a card. Some people go to great lengths to find hydration vests that include storage, or even use some of the hidden pocket features on hats, socks, or underwear to store cash. Our favorite hiding spot is the little known besom pocket inside of a Melin hat, which is perfect for carrying a $20.

All of these features make it a solid addition to the training gear list as it can combine the features of multiple other pieces of gear while providing a safety blanket of sorts for emergencies.

Apple Watch Accuracy

If you are using the Apple Watch, or any other wearable, as a training tool one of the biggest concerns is the accuracy of the data is captures.

Challenges (Monthly and Head-to-Head)

The easiest challenge to conduct with an Apple Watch is also the hardest to follow, it’s all personal. Generally speaking the best results of using a wearable are those that will actually cause you to make some habit changes in your daily routine. For some folks having access to measurements will do the trick, but for the vast majority the presence of Apple Watch rings and challenges are what really makes an impact.

Apple by default creates unique challenges for every registered Apple Watch user. These are updated on the first of each month and can be found within the rings summary. We wrote up a total review of Apple Watches monthly challenges already on this site.

How to Wear An Apple Watch

One of the biggest concerns when deciding to make the plunge with an Apple Watch is figuring out exactly how to wear it. The watch after all is a known accessory and wearing a fitness tracker in place or a traditonal time piece can be a fashion faux paus. While some people swear by their watch, and wear it to every situation from a wedding to a doctor’s visit, others will find the aesthetic clashes.

The watch itself can be worn on either the right wrist or left wrist. There is no correct orientation of the watch either! In normal watches the face of the watch has a single orientation that also forces where the buttons on the housing would go. On the screen based watch though the “up” orientation can be swapped digitally. That means that if you prefer to hit the crown button with your opposite thumb, as compared to squeezing it with the index finger, you can simply swap the band and watch and then change the face orientation.

Where on the wrist to put the watch is a bit of personal preference. Some forums have asked how far up your arm you wear the Apple Watch. In general it should be wherever is most comfortable, but also where it can get the best readings. The watch has a sensor on the underside of it that tracks heart rate as well as measures O2 readings. It does this by sensing, through the skin, blood flow which means it needs to be over a vein. Things like surgeries, fat distribution, and individual build can all effect where the watch will get the best readings.

As someone who wears their watch in nearly all situations the impact of wearing the watch shows up in a fairly intense tan line.

The Cost of an Apple Watch

There is a drawback to having a connected device, that is that the initial cost of it is not always the last cost. This is true for the Apple Watch as well. Although you can pickup a used older series watch for less than $100 (check ebay for tons of great refurbished deals), even these are easy to find follow on costs for.

On the surface the Watch itself will vary from around $79 for a refurbished older generation up to around $799 for the latest version of the Apple Watch Ultra. These are not the most expensive though as custom options like the Hermes series can extend to $1250 or more. No doubt there will continue to be designers and brands that look to partner with Apple to make even more deluxe options.

The first initial cost though comes right at checkout with Apple where you are upsold on additional bands and coverage. Bands themselves follow the classic Apple Model, make a proprietary accessory and charge a premium. Ultra bands run up to $99 just for the band itself, that’s more than the cost of an older generation device! Each watch naturally comes with a charger, but if you prefer for a backup that will run you a few additional dollars as well.

Extended care will weigh in at a few more dollars as well. Apple Care is available for an Apple Watch, with base options being just $2.50 per month and two year coverage for the nicer options being upwards of $150. Even with the care option, replacement or refurbishing will still cost $79 per incident. So, while Apple Care on a watch can offset the cost of a replacement, it does not earn you the ability to damage the watch without condition.

Some More FAQs About Apple Watch

Which Hand Should You Wear Apple Watch On?

You can wear an apple watch on either wrist. If by default it is showing upside down, you’ll have to follow direction to turn it around.

Is there An Apple Watch for Kids?

In 2020 Apple launched family setup which allows a watch to be worn by someone without a corresponding iPhone.

There is no default “kids” version of the Apple Watch, however the normal version are fine for a kids wrist although for smaller ones you may need to get an additional wrist strap that can be attached for wrist less than 130 mm around.

How Do You Customize Stats Shown on Apple Watch During A Run?

You can configure an Apple Watch to show your preferred during activity stats. This is in Apple Watch App on the phone> Workout > Workout View > Outdoor Run (or whatever activity). A walk through for adding elevation to your watch is included here.

Can Apple Watch Work For Triathletes?

The older watchOS did not have an option for tracking multi-sport event. With watchOS9 there is now the option to track any combination of Swim/Bike/Run for both indoor and outdoor options. As a triathlete ourselves we are big fans of this and have covered Apple Watch for Triathletes in this article.

How Do You Track Paddle Boarding On Apple Watch?

Running and cycling are not the only events to track with an Apple Watch. We love to do SUP (stand up paddle boarding) and have covered tracking SUP with Apple Watch.

What Is the name of the first Apple Watch and when was it released?

Series (VersionRelease Year
Series 02014
Series 12015
Series 22016
Series 32017
Series 42018
Series 52019
Series SE (1st Gen)2020
Series 62021
Series 72022
Series 8 & Ultra2022