For lovers of wearable tech, the introduction of the Apple smart watch, version 2 was a much anticipated event. While the new watch looks much the same as the old one there are some subtle differences – it’s a few noticeable millimetres thicker than the old watch but it still carries that same Apple style and sophistication that you either love or hate.
More Sports Watch
Probably the biggest difference you’ll notice with the Series 2 is that it is more sports orientated. Apple has added GPS to track walks, runs and cycles into the wild and the casing is actually waterproof so you can even use it for swims or in the shower.
Measuring of distances and, more importantly, heart rate has been an issue with most wearable sports tech though the Apple Series 2 is notably more accurate than its predecessor even when in the pool. While the readings shouldn’t be taken as complete gospel, they do give you a ball park figure on how your performance is improving.
This is one area that will no doubt improve with developments in technology over the coming years but, for now, we can say that performance is okay and better than many other wearable sports tech out there. One thing the fitness app doesn’t have is sleep tracking which is a little strange considering that competitors such as FitBit now include it as standard.
Performance and Operating System
There’s quite a hefty jump in performance for the Series 2 compared to the Series 1 and it’s noticeable. This one uses the watchOS 3 and built in and 3rd party apps are much quicker to jump start, in some cases 7 times as fast as on watchOS 2. The preinstalled apps are much the same as before and you can automatically add the ones from your iPhone. Better communication with your other devices such as iPhone or iPad also makes a difference.
One of the main issues with the Series 1 was the battery life and, though it’s better on the Series 2, there’s still work to be done. Rather than barely getting through the day you can manage to have a battery that lasts well into day two as long as you don’t overuse it. All in all, though, things are moving in the right direction but there’s still plenty of room for improvement.
With better notification support and plenty of apps to choose from, there’s a lot to be said for this latest incarnation of the smartwatch. One problem that is still apparent with the watch is the difficulty in using the app drawer – mainly because of the size of the display. This can be a little fiddly but shouldn’t deter you from upgrading to the new watch. It’s still better than the Series 1.
The Apple Watch Series 2 is certainly as step forward, though owners of the Series 1 may wonder why they should invest in this model. It’s a sign that the company is beginning to get to grips with what consumers actually want from a product such as this. Expect much more from future upgrades.