Mac Heads

1st Week Apple Watch Impressions

When I got my first MacBook, iPad and iPhone, I was in geek heaven for weeks as I figured out all the functionality. It took a while for me to finally get to a point where they were merely a laptop, tablet, and smartphone.

When I got my hands on my Apple Watch last week, I had that same feeling…for about a couple of days. After a week, that feeling of “it’s just a smartwatch” has already hit me. Maybe it’s because Apple wasn’t the first to hit the smartwatch market, so it couldn’t set the standard to which all other smartwatches would be judged. Maybe it’s that Apple Watch wasn’t my first smartwatch, so I already had a idea of what to expect.

Whatever the reason, I can say that after only a seven days on my wrist, my 1st week Apple Watch Impressions are “The thrill is gone” BUT, it has the features, functionality, and deep integration that I was looking for that will keep it on my wrist for years to come.

To give you a quick update, I ordered the 42mm (large) Space Gray “Sport” Edition with the black Sport Band. I must say that it looks and feels good on my wrist, but it’s not too flashy. I like watches, but I’ve never been a “hey look at this big, gaudy thing on my wrist” timepiece guy. Even if I would’ve opted for a more design-ier version, it still wouldn’t come off as flashy. In my opinion, Apple Watch design was right on the money.

Don’t Miss: Spigen Launches Line of Apple Watch Accessories

Setting up Apple Watch via the separate iPhone app was initially intimidating because there are a ton of functionality options that you can set up. Which makes sense – Something this technological that will be on your body most of the day needs to be calibrated to match a wide variety of people.

“If an important notification came through, I dealt with it right on my watch, and continued about my business, versus getting distracted by other things when I pulled my iPhone out of my pocket.”

After going setting up and testing most of the settings, I found myself only pushing important notifications to my watch (email from only one account, text messages, calendar events, phone calls, and a few app notifications). I didn’t want to constantly be pinged on my wrist when every little notification came through…Maybe that’s why the novelty has worn off faster simply because I’m not messing with my wrist as much due to reduction of notifications?

*Rubs chin*

Once I had my watch dialed in…That was it. Since the screen is small and notifications are at a minimum, most interactions with Apple Watch were natural and intentional — I only used it when I needed to. There was no frequent messing with the watch to check social media feeds, play games, triage email…or randomly find things to do like on my iPhone, iPad, or MacBook. That in an of itself reduced the amount of distractions. If an important notification came through, I dealt with it right on my watch, and continued about my business, versus getting distracted by other things when I pulled my iPhone out of my pocket.

Another side effect to the lack to random interaction was the battery life. Apple claims “up to 18 hours” with Apple Watch. I can say that not a day has gone by where I’ve been worried that my watch would die. From a full change at 8 a.m., to when I was ready to hit the sack around 11:30pm-ish, my watch was always above 40%. So for me, myself, personally, Apple Watch battery live has not been an issue.

When I had to intentionally interact with my Apple Watch was where its usefulness shines. Here are some features that I’ve used the most.

Activity and Workout Apps

I sit in my chair and stare at computer screens most of the day. I’m not a heavy “monitor my activity” person, so I don’t pay attention to most of the Activity features and functionality. But, I do know that I need to be more active throughout the day. Activity notifications remind me every 50 minutes or so that I need to “stand up”. So during those times, it get up, get on the ground, and do some pushups – Yes, I’m trying to get my “guns” back, and being reminded every hour to do a set of 20 push-ups, I should be set in about a month.

One of the main things I was interested in with Apple Watch was can I play music and can I track my runs without being tethered to my iPhone. Apple Watch has up to 2GB of built-in storage so I can save playlists directly to my watch. All I needed was a pair of Bluetooth headphones, and I was set on the tunes.

Without getting too techie, Using the Workout app, Apple Watch can learn more about your stride after a couple of runs. Without my phone’s GPS, it can’t track my location, but can offer indoor and outdoor time, distance, and pace readings. I did a couple runs this week using the Workout app, and compared then with the readings of those same runs using the Nike+ Running app, and they were similar within a couple of seconds of each other. I don’t care about where I run, as long as I can track time/distance/pace (and heart rate), I’m good.

Apple Watch unboxing via brothatech


apple watch maps
I don’t know why people hate on Apple’s version of Google Maps. It works fine for me. Using Maps on Apple Watch especially comes in handy when I’m walking, or even driving. When I need to make a turn, it taps my wrist and displays the next directions. Since I drive with my left hand, all I have to do is twist my wrist for navigation instructions when notified. I can also use Siri to dictate locations or addresses, so technically, I never have to pull out my iPhone for directions.


apple watch siri
I’ve really noticed that I’ve been using Siri to interact with my watch way more than using Siri on my iPhone. I just seems more natural to verbally interact with my smartwatch versus my smartphone. Maybe because the screen is smaller, my mind is forced to talking to my wrist to respond to text messages and emails, check my calendar, the weather, and take notes, instead of touching and twisting. I can dictate all Apple Watch commands, but I’m using Siri whenever I can to interact with Apple Watch. I even do it in public.

Those are just a few of the features/functionality I’ve used the most during my 1st week. I’m positive that when more and more watch apps that offer seamless interactions with Apple Watch, I will find even more reasons to keep my iPhone in my pocket, or on the charger.

While “I’m over it” is the phrase that comes to mind when thinking about my lack of hype-ness, over Apple’s first smartwatch after only a week, the idea that I will be constantly uncovering new ways to streamline my frequent daily activities in my wrist is pretty exciting.

Any Apple Watch owners who read my site? What are your 1st week Apple Watch Impressions?

No affiliate links were harmed in the making of this post

Mac Heads

The Lowdown on Apple Watch

The latest Apple live event has come and gone. We all had time to pick through all the Apple watch details and share their $0.02. So I might as well jump on the bandwagon and give you my take on the first smartwatch from Apple.

Via the “Spring Forward” Apple live event that we either attended in-person or via the live stream (shout to to Apple for getting the streaming right this go ’round), we finally have all the launch details for the Apple Watch. There was a ton of information that was announced (I’ll get to that later). Just in case you haven’t been paying attention (or the slightest bit interested), here is a rundown of the important information you should know.

Apple Watch Sport (Low-end)

38mm – $349

42mm – $399

Apple Watch Sport via BrothaTech
Space Gray Aluminum Case
Black Sport Band

The Apple Watch Sport case is made of a custom aluminium alloy and has a special Ion-X Glass Retina Display created to better protect from every day wear and tear. Sport comes in two case colors: Silver and Space Gray, and you have a choice of a 5 colored sport bands (White, Blue, Green, Pink, Black) that are made of (you guessed it) “special” rubber.

Apple Watch (Mid-Range)

38mm – Starts at $349

42mm – Starts at $399

Apple Watch
Space Black Stainless Steel Case
Space Black Link Bracelet

The Apple Watch case is made of customized Steel and uses Sapphire Crystal Retina Display. Watch also comes in two case colors: Stainless Steel and Space Black.

Now here’s where things get interesting. Out of the box, Watch comes in the Stainless Steel color with a choice of a White or Black sport band. From there you can choose to upgrade (read: pay extra) for the Space Black case, and different bands made from special metals, leathers, colors, and clasps. The top-end price for Watch is $1099 when max out the options.

Apple Edition (Ballers)

Starts at $10,000 “If you had to ask…”

Apple Watch Edition
38mm 18-Karay Yellow Gold
Bright Red Modern Buckle

Apple Watch Edition case is made with either a “special” 18-Karat Yellow or Rose Gold and uses the same Sapphire Crystal Retina Display as the Watch. The 38mm entry-level version has a Rose Gold case and White sport band (with 18-Karat Gold clasp). If you got it like that, you can choose the 42mm 18-Karat Yellow Gold case with Midnight Blue Classic band with 18-Karat Gold clasp for $15,000.


Before I give my opinion, here are the essential features for Apple Watch

  • Companion device tethered to your iPhone 5 and up phone for network connectivity
  • Bluetooth as well as WiFi iPhone tethering for greater range
  • Connect to other Apple Watches for special communication
  • Haptic (vibration) notification feedback with speaker and mic to answer calls and make voice notes
  • Measures heart rate via Infrared and LED technology
  • Download and manage Watch apps from iPhone
  • Water resistant (not waterproof)
  • Connects to Apple TV (remote) and other HomeKit-enabled devices for control
  • Can Download songs and playlists to watch (no word on storage space amount)
  • “All Day” 18-hour battery life

Additionally, Apple Watch introduces a new mobile OS and user interface that combines touch interaction with the use of a “digital” crown to scroll and click through screens. During the event, Apple showed off several launch apps that can do everything from integrate with vehicles, check into and unlock hotel doors, monitor home systems, check scores, weather, and social media feeds, among integrating with Apple-specific apps that let you check messages, calendar events, and pay for things via Apple Pay. Of course Apple has baked in HealthKit so the Apple Watch adds a wealth of health and fitness functionality that can measure heart rate, track your exercise and activity.

Apple Watch Features via BrothaTech

My Beef

I’m not trying to get into anybody’s pockets and tell them what they should or should not buy. “It ain’t trickin’ if you got it”. Personally, I plan on getting the Sport version with the Silver case and Black band. I know people who like watches, and they like technology, so I would not be surprised if they opt for a more expensive version. More power to them.

Now I know Apple has created all these “special” metals that set it apart from all other smartwatches and even fine timepieces. when you add the tech into the mix, and the cache that goes along with supporting the Apple brand, you have a wining combination.

My beef with Apple Watch is two-fold

1) Outside of the different materials used in the design, the technology is the same…They all do the same thing. The $400 Apple Watch Sport I plan on buying can do the same thing as the guy who plans on spending 5-figures for their Apple Watch Edition. I’m not a watch guy (yet), but I’m pretty sure I can’t buy a $400 dollar Rolex that does the same thing as a $10,000 Rolex. Hell, a $400 Rolex doesn’t even exist.

If I spend $10k for the higher-end Apple Watch, I’m going to need more separation function-wise from the person who spends $400. For instance, I’m going to need my watch to do more than show me the weather and my Instagram feed, or send my heartbeat and a goofy drawing to Mrs. Tech. For $10k, I’m going to need my Apple Watch to come with J.A.R.V.I.S., not Siri (sorry Siri).

2) Apple came out with too many versions for its first time in the smartwatch category. They were not first to market in the wearables category, so I personally think Apple higher-ups felt they needed to one-up all the current smartwatches. So they went the opulence route and worked with all these precious metals and materials to put some distance between its watch and competitions.

The issue with that is people were already going to buy the crap out of this watch even if it only had two sizes, two different metal cases, and three different bands. Apple didn’t have to come out with soo many versions the first go ’round. Even though folks were gonna love the Apple Watch regardless (I do), the reception of the Apple Watch hasn’t been as overwhelming as when the iPhone or iPad dropped. In my opinion, all that effort to create those beautiful expensive versions may just fall on death ears, as folks without investment portfolios who can move around enough dividends to pay for a watch, will overwhelmingly opt for the entry-level version.

All that to say, Apple Watch is dope, and the functionality is what I would expect from a smartwatch made by Apple. But maybe (just maybe) Apple kind of overdid itself right out of the gate?

Apple should have saved all that class for Apple Watch S that will drop next year…Which is a whole ‘nother problem in and of itself.

Apple Watch

Mac Heads

Apple Watch To Be Announced on March 9th

You didn’t think Apple was going to let the Pebble Time announcement success last for too long did you?