Sheila's Take on the Apple Watch and Apps
by Sheila Jamison
From the time that Apple updated my iPhone with the “Apple Watch” icon, I knew I had to have it. And I couldn’t help admire the Milanese loop band. It was too classy to pass up.
So I ordered one. Then I watched all the videos about the watch to be prepared to set-up my watch when it arrived. I was even more excited about the watch after watching the videos! I admit, it took a while to setup all the new apps I wanted for my watch. But after I got it set-up and running, I didn’t know how I lived without it!
What Can It Do?
Here are some key points that I found made my watch fun and enjoyable.
Mail is heaven for me. At least 90% of the emails I get are garbage. But, I really wouldn’t want to miss the important ones! That’s why I keep my “Favorites” contacts on my watch. That’s a limited group of people that I converse with on a regular basis. You can still keep all of your favorite contacts on your phone, and they can be two different lists! It’s just easier to manage with a smaller number on your watch. This method works great for text and phone messages too!
I find it very convenient that the watch can control your music on your phone. When I’m in the car playing music via Bluetooth, I appreciate not having to unlock my phone to find out the title or artist for what’s playing! More than just telling me that, my watch lets me go backward or forward to a new song.
Siri is amazing on the watch. Have her search for you. She will even tell you whether to view the info on the watch or your phone with “handoff”.
Handoff is a great feature. You use your watch to search the web and retrieve the info from a compass that appears on the lower left of your locked phone. Push the compass up and it will take you directly to the webpage you requested.
I love using my watch to make phone calls. I’ve never had anyone that couldn’t hear me or even suspected I was talking to them on my watch! It really made me feel like Dick Tracy.
Always remember that the watch is dependent on your phone for anything that requires access to the internet or data from apps installed on your phone.
Forgot Your Phone?
So what can the watch do without the phone being present?
- Watch (intuitively obvious, wasn’t it?)
- Fitness and exercise movements – even your heart beat!
- You can sync music to your watch. That will put it on the watch’s hard drive.
- Same is true with pictures. Space is limited. Think of it as an iPod shuffle. Of course this requires a wireless headset to listen to music.
HOWEVER, if you have a Wi-Fi connect you can do the following:
o Send and receive texts
o Send and receive drawings to your Favorite contacts that have an Apple watch. This won’t work on a phone. You’ll know this because the middle option (icon of a right hand with index finger and thumb pointing upward). This means you can send a drawing.
How to send drawings:
By using the Digital Crown, browse through your contacts and select who you want to send a drawing to.
Touch the hand and then begin to draw. Once you’re finished, you’ll be prompted to choose a color. Then it will send the message. Or you can simply tap the screen to start your drawing.
How to send your heartbeat to someone:
You want to be really selective about to whom you send this. It will be your actual heartbeat shown as a beating heart. It will be (rightly) perceived as a ‘Love’ message. You can thrill your “sweetie” (after you’ve made them a present of their own Apple Watch) with just a couple motions and by holding your first two fingers on the screen. (Did you catch the hint that an Apple Watch is required to received this?)
The Ones I Use Often
Here are some apps I’ve found very useful on the watch:
- Hello Heart: Allows you to record and track your blood pressure measurements (using any BP measuring device) by speaking the measurements into your phone. It also encourages you to take your blood pressure.
- My watch also lets me know when it’s time to stand. Prolonged sitting has been linked with a risk of diabetes, heart disease and some forms of cancer. So please, stand up at least every hour.
- You can remotely control your phone’s camera with your watch. This is especially good for videos, slo-mo and time-lapse.
- Calendar: I find it helpful to use one of the many watch face choices that will show me my next activity on my calendar. The same is true for using a timer and stopwatch. I have to admit that on my free time I love Mickey!
Watch Over Phone?
My watch is much more user friendly than my phone with these apps:
- Apple Pay - is my favorite!
- Shazam - is great on the watch. I often hear a song on the radio and want to buy it - can do it all on the watch.
- Request Uber
- Some banks like Barclaycard & Citi Mobile Lite give you current balances & recent transactions.
- Starbucks app pays through Apple Pay.
- Amaze people by showing them your photos on the watch.
Other Useful Apps
My favorite finance apps:
- Calc Watch
My favorite weather apps:
- The Weather
- NOAA Radar Pro
- Dark Sky – Will alert when precipitation is about to begin and end.
- DoublePost: Allows you to post to both Twitter and Facebook.
My favorite things about this app are – Altitude, Barometer, and how many “GB used/free” on your watch. There are more available. These are the ones I like.
- Elly: Beautiful online music shuffling application that plays music based on your selected genre from iTunes.
Flight & Airline Apps:
- American Airlines
- United Airlines
- British Airways
- Qantas Airways
- Air Canada
- Japan Airlines
with more to come. Click the link below to see what these look like:
Just as your phone needs rebooting, so will your Watch. So when it starts to act squirrely, reboot!
Remember … your phone and watch are only as smart as you make them!
Have fun and call me if you have any questions! Please let me know what great things you like or dislike about your watch.
The data above were taken from sources deemed reliable. However no guarantee can be made as to their completeness and accuracy.
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