Apple’s big press conference last week obvious focused on the companies latest and greatest smartphones, the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus. We’ve yet to get our hands on the new models so our review is forthcoming, but early reviews suggest Apple’s new iPhones are far less boring than some tech blogs might have led you to believe ahead of the iPhone 7’s debut. They’re hardly perfect and there’s no question that there are some issues that will bother users, but they’re easily the best iPhones Apple has ever made and they’re the most powerful smartphones on the planet by a wide margin. You can check out an iPhone 7 review roundup right here.
On Wednesday, however, attention is turning to the third new product Apple unveiled on stage last week during its big event: the Apple Watch Series 2. The early reviews are in and, as is the case with every second-generation gadget that has ever existed, reviewers are saying they wish this new version was the device Apple released in the first place. Thankfully there were a few more meaningful things said about the new Apple Watch Series 2, and you’ll find our review roundup below.
The new Apple Watch ticks closer to being the techie timepiece it was always clocked up to be.
You can swim with it now. It has built-in GPS. You can get more done without your phone.
As the first Apple models that you can swim with, down to a depth of 50 meters, I swam a few laps in a friends’ pool. I showered with the watch too. It kept on functioning as advertised.
Apple says you’re good to go in saltwater or a chlorinated pool and there are two types of swim workouts inside the Watch’s Workout app. In the pool swim workout, you first tell the watch the length of the pool. It can then measure laps, your average pace, active calories and other parameters, shown in a companion Activity app on the iPhone. (You can share these and other workouts through the app.)
All this is synced up after your swim, since the presumption is you’re not going to take the phone in the water–even the new iPhone 7. GPS is turned off during a pool swim workout.
The Wall Street Journal
You don’t need an Apple Watch.
Saying you need one is like saying you need lobster for dinner tonight. Unlike the iPhone, the watch isn’t a necessity. It’s a luxury for those who want some freedom from their smartphones. That much we’ve learned in the past two years.
But the new Watch Series 2 finally gives you a better reason to want one: It can help you on your path to becoming a healthier human. In my year-and-1/2 of wearing Apple’s wrist computer, I’ve used it 95% of the time as a workout companion… and as a watch, with a lowercase “w.”
Watch had clear strengths but equally clear weaknesses. Apple identified what was flawed and went back to the drawing board. They identified what people liked best — health and fitness tracking — and made them even better.
Let’s call it what it is: a fitness tracker.
The Apple Watch Series 2 is exactly that. It’s what Apple had resisted calling its wearable for the past year and a half, even declining to categorize it as such when citing industry rankings, opting for the “smartwatch” category instead. It is, definitely, still a smartwatch. But the Watch now has focus, and that’s a good thing.
I can’t help but smile every time I think about how Apple Watch has helped me over the past year. I’m healthier, more aware, and I can communicate easily, all using one device strapped to my wrist.
For me, Apple Watch is about improving our lives and making us more efficient. It has done that for me many times over and Apple Watch Series 2 will continue that journey.
The Apple Watch Series 2 is the first real Apple Watch.
It delivers on the promise of a mostly passive device that can accomplish simple tasks in 1-3 seconds. There is now built-in GPS which allows for exercising without having to lug along a comparatively heavy iPhone just to get accurate tracking. And it’s completely waterproof, as any decent sport watch should be.
The bottom line: There is a lot to love about the new Apple Watch Series 2.
But if you don’t think you’ll swim in the watch and aren’t doing a happy dance about the new GPS, you would be very happy with the Series 1…which is less expensive, has the faster processor, and comes with all of the watchOS 3 updates.
Yes, Apple does know what time it is. It’s time to get serious about smartwatches.
Life is pretty good with the new Apple Watch Series 2. It looks exactly like my old Apple Watch, the wearable Apple unveiled two years ago (and launched about 18 months ago), but has new components and brand-new software. Both have changed the experience with Apple’s smartwatch in largely positive ways.
While little has changed in Apple Watch design, Series 2 and the latest software, called watchOS 3, do represent an important strategic shift. In particular, the new OS moves aside cutesy features like Digital Touch (that’s where you draw on the screen) and sharing your heartbeat in favor of more utility. Those features aren’t gone, but they’ve definitely been demoted.