Game Changed: My Amazing First Week with the Apple Watch

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So my Apple Watch arrived about 10 days ago. I’ve been super busy, so I didn’t even open it. I was actually having buyer’s regret, thinking about sending it back because it’s a bunch of money for a guy who buys $50 Timex Ironman watches and has no time for learning how to set it up. Yes, I was skeptical. A friend talked me off the ledge last Friday, so….I opened it…and the game changed. Here are seven reasons.

1. “Hey Siri..”: Siri is becoming a true personal assistant.

I hate typing on my iPhone – big fingers, small keys. As a creative person, I’m constantly experiencing new things, which makes me want to take lots of notes. No, I’m not talking to myself, bro. I’m telling Siri all my random thoughts. I’m dictating messages and emails right and left. I’m pushing thoughts to Evernote, which I think will become more of a hub in my life. Siri is great. I never expected to say that.

2. I lost two pounds.

That which gets measured…gets done. I now have someone making sure I don’t just sit in my chair and code. I get a reminder once an hour to stand up. I have a report to show me how many calories I’ve burned. When I exercise, there’s a timer, a heart rate monitor and a measure of the calories burned. It just changed my routine enough to get better results.

3. I don’t look at my phone or email all the time.

Through settings, I only get notified on the Apple Watch from my “favorites”, the people who I really want to be able to get my attention with a minute’s notice. I get LOTS of spam on my phone, so now I don’t have to deal with all the false alarms. If I get notified on my Watch, it’s probably something to read.

4. My calendar appointments are easier to manage.

I live by my calendar and to-do list reminders. With the Watch, I don’t have to be in front of my computer or have my phone handy. Notifications come in the form of silent vibrations, so it’s easy to be ready for any appointment right on time.

5. There’s even more fun to be had with the camera.

Apple Watch Camera TricksNot that I have a selfie fetish (far from it), but when I do need to take a photo, I can set the camera up and use it with the remote feature of the Watch. 3-2-1-snap. It’s cool and allows room to be creative. I’ve been shooting lots of video this year, but it doesn’t support that (yet).

6. Where am I?

One of my favorite tricks to show people what’s possible is to ask Siri where I am. It pulls up a map of your location. So now matter how many adult beverages I have (ha!), I will know where I am…

7. Waking up, counting down.

I use LOTS of timers and alarms. Let’s just say this functionality is limitless with Siri and the Watch. “Hey Siri…set a timer for 10 minutes.” Boom. I have set varied wake-up times for different days (couldn’t do that with the Timex!), and I can have a virtually unlimited number of them. Oh, and the sound is gentle, so I’m probably the only one that hears it.

BTW, I’ve heard lots of nonsense about battery life – I use about 60% of the battery in a day, and I charge it on my nightstand at night (so I can wake up to the alarm).

Perhaps the most impressed people I know are my kids. My daughter walked up to a table (of people we didn’t know) at lunch the other day and said “My daddy’s watch can do anything.” I’m not sure she’s too far off. It changed the game that much for me in one week. My life just got hacked.