I’m excited about the new Apple Watch Series 2 which was recently announced and am in the midst of writing the review for it. 4 words; so far so good.
Now before you lambaste me, hear me out. I’ve had experiences with numerous GPS watches and the original Apple Watch. While the latter failed to keep up with the rigours of practical usage, the fact remains that it was a device that lacked focus which diminished consumer interest over time.
Running, water sports, movement, ball games, community, meditation and the occasional smart notifications. After looking at the press video a few times, the health and fitness message resonates with the athlete wannabe in me, as I’m sure thousands if not millions around the world would similarly feel.
The new Apple Watch Series 2 has a focus and intends to battle it out both on the smartwatch front and the fitness tracker market.
I’ve been an Android user for the longest time but I call a promising product when I see one. Here’s eight good reasons why the Apple Watch Series 2 might be the fitness smart watch you’ll need.
Features of the Apple Watch Series 2
- All day activity tracker. Counts steps, distance, calories burnt, sleep
- OLED retina display with Force Touch. (Double the brightness of the original Apple Watch)
- Water resistant 50 metres
- Wi-Fi (802.11b/g/n 2.4GHz) and Bluetooth 4.0
- Heart rate sensor, ambient light sensor, GPS, accelerometer, gyroscope
- Up to 18 hours of battery life.
- Siri activated functions
- Magnetic wireless charging
1. Health and Fitness focused
The inclusion of on board GPS means you can go about your outdoor workouts without the need to bring along your mobile devices. This also means the Apple Watch series 2 is now a full fledged GPS smart watch, just like its Android counterpart Samsung Gear S3 and Samsung Gear Fit 2. Apple has even collaborated with Nike in releasing an Apple Nike + Watch.The focus on fitness will allow Apple to pour resources into one aspect of the watch. The key is in delivering a fitness focused smart watch that is so good people end up using the smart functions.
There’s also a new Breathe app that will guide you through a series of deep breaths for those much needed calming moments in a day or to simply inculcate deep breathing as part of your daily habit.
2. Made for water sports
With 50m water resistant rating, activities such as swimming and rowing are no longer off limits. Save for scuba diving, if you have any intention of getting wet, the Apple Watch Series 2 wants to be there.
Fitbit and Xiaomi fitness tracking device can’t install apps and Garmin has a less than impressive Connect IQ app store compared to Apple’s App Store or Google Play Store. This is what’s going to seperate the Apple Watch Series 2 from the pack.
4. Wrist based heart rate
While there’s been incidences of tattooed skin or hairy arms causing inaccurate heart rate readings, these issues affect most optical heart rate sensors out there and is not unique to Apple.
My experience with the original Apple Watch’s heart rate measuring accuracy was great and I’m looking forward to this new edition.
5. Brighter display and more powerful processor
The Apple Watch Series 2 display boasts of a brightness level that’s twice that of the original Apple Watch. That should go a long way towards visibility under most conditions if not all conditions.
On the hardware front, the new dual-core S2 chip allows the Apple Watch Series 2 to performs up to 50% faster than its predecessor.
6. Full smart watch capability
The Apple Watch Series 2 is a full fledged smart watch. Receive notifications, read emails, answer calls directly on the watch, activate Siri directly from the watch to search or set reminders, receive directions on the watch face, Apple Pay enabled, reply to messages and many more. I could go on and on but you get the drift, Apple Watch is smarty pants.
7. All day activity tracker
The triple rings which monitor your activities throughout the day are by now very much iconic of the Apple Watch.
The three rings refer to the the time the user spends moving, exercising or standing instead of sitting down. Receive timely reminders to stand up and updates towards completing the triple activity rings for the day.
The best part? Easily share your activity rings with your friends and family.
8. Aesthetics and customisation
The Apple Watch has always performed well in the aesthetics department. Top it off with heavily customisable options such as changeable wrist bands and watch faces on the fly, you can be assured the Apple Watch will sit comfortably in the office and during workouts without screaming “fitness!” Apple Watch Hermès anyone?
By the way, the original Apple Watch has also been upgraded with a more powerful processor and OS 3. While not quite Apple Watch Series 2 standard, it does offer some respite for those who see no need to shell out an extra $100 for the full suite of features.
The Apple Watch Series 2 is available for pre-orders now at prices ranging from $369 to $1249 for the ceramic casing version. Shipment is expected to start 16th September.