Features, fashion and functionality are what the new iWatch are all about. With features previously addressed, today we will delve into the functionality aspect.
Here’s the list of functions that Apple is promoting:
- Stays connected to your iPhone
- Get more texts and emails
- Make and receive phone calls
- Fitness and health tracker
- Music (like an iPod)
- Makes payments via Apple Pay
- Connect to smart-home appliances
- Wi-Fi and Bluetooth
The small, yet bright and legible touch display has a scroll-wheel and a button for additional features and to further access the apps. Touch or swipe to activate, interact, speak on the phone or voice activate an app via the microphone. These are the popular features that Google’s Android Wear and Samsung’s Gear smartwatches have been seeking.
3rd party apps can be developed via a software development kit. The original iPhone didn’t enable 3rd party apps until its second year, so this is another important step for the iWatch. Application development has exploded into a new niche market. Custom apps for businesses can be designed, and placed on the App Store for purchase and download.
The Apple Watch will not connect to older iPhones, only the 5, 5C, 5S, 6 or 6+ versions, so a phone upgrade may be in order for those of us with the 4S and earlier versions. You MUST use an iPhone, the watch will not connect with other smartphone brands. This is an iPhone lover’s device.
Tapping activates the display, while swiping up brings Glances, which are like mini-apps showing everything from weather to stock information. Tap on any app to bring up the full version and begin to use.
The iWatch is similar in many ways to the predecessor’s smartwatches, what sets it apart is Apple Pay. With the Apple Watch, you can swipe to pay at stores, pay online, open doors at hotels, and other cool functions. Apple Pay is the secure and effortlessly (according to Apple) method of digital commerce.
The watch runs the ecosystem of apps, which is another major separation from the competition. It’s tied completely to iOS and your iPhone that was installed through an Apple Watch app with the iOS 8.2 update.
The Sport Watch tracks movement, estimates calories burn, and monitors heart rate. Another app tracks dedicated workouts, activities like cycling or hiking, along with timed sessions and heart-rate measurement during the workouts. Each app syncs back to a hub app on the iPhone, and to Apple Health. It’s also water resistant to a degree. Sweaty workouts and rain will not be a problem, but showering or swimming is definitely not recommended.
The charging cable is magnetic. It’s very easy to use and attaches via a standard USB port.
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