Friday, April 01, 2016

State of the Apple Watch - Inspired by USAToday's Ed Baig - I would buy one again too!

The "gold standard" in marketing research questions for assessing customer satisfaction has long been something along the lines of "would you recommend to a friend". But I think in the case of the year-old Apple Watch, the question (see above) posed by USAToday's Ed Baig is even more relevant. His March 20th "op-ed" asked, "Would I still buy an Apple Watch?".

Buy again or recommend to a friend - key gauges of customer satisfaction
I have been evaluating my answer to that question since then. Actually it's not that hard for me to answer - YES! (And being less than original, my more complete answer follows Baig's - "On balance, yes"!)

While the watch began to ship a year ago, I held out until early June to buy mine. I was using a Pebble smartwatch when the Apple Watch launched, and I referred to it for a time as my "placebo" - knowing it would hold me off from getting the Apple, at least for awhile. That worked for two months!

As an original iPhone customer, having upgraded and used one ever since 2007, and as a life-long wristwatch wearer, I was an easy target for Apple. (Though as a Baby Boomer, probably outside their ideal demographic.)

As far as how I use the Watch, like Baig, I find the Apple Watch Notifications are closest to making my watch a "must have". Informing me of an incoming call or text when grabbing for my phone is not advisable, for either safety (driving) or courtesy (in a meeting or when around other people in a quiet setting).
The "Stand" meter and reminder -
a life-changer for me

My other basics on the watch include Activity, Weather, and Stocks - they probably consume 80%-90% of my "glances", outside of simply checking the time of day. Speaking of "glances" I think it is interesting how little I see or know about "Glances" (with a capital G) or "Complications" - Apple's categories for watch activities or apps. This part of the Watch marketing effort seems to me to been a miss, by a wide margin.

I have tried a large number of apps, and have mostly set them aside after a few days (which truthfully is true for iPhone and iPad apps). My Fidelity app on the watch was cool in giving me visibility to a few retirement accounts, but it's not like I'm going to be day trading on my wrist. The Shazam app remains on my watch, but I have never quite figured out its ability to do its magic (waving the wrist to ID a song) and how it reacts with the iPhone, so I typically don't try. As mentioned, the basic Activity app is a behavior-changer for me (in a good way), but other fitness and health apps I've tried just haven't done it for me.

And then there are the little surprises. When using my iPhone for driving directions, it's pretty cool to get a little "tap on the wrist" when approaching an upcoming turn. And the notification feature for Instagram, with a "like/reply" capability, is great fun. Also, my Siri-activated Timer action, when parking at a downtown meter, has kept me ticket-free for nearly a year.

The "look" of my Apple Watch,
 entering year two
As far as accessorizing, I vowed to never buy an Apple-brand anything for the watch, which was $350 at the time I bought it. But I caved in and bought one of the new canvas bands, for $50, after they were announced last week. The original bright-blue Sport band had outlived its novelty for me, and a third-party leather band purchased on eBay for $20 was acceptable but had wear issues. So I celebrated the Watch's one-year anniversary by splurging for the blue canvas band and a new look.

So, yes, I would buy again, and am happy to have an Apple Watch. As far as recommending to a friend? I must say I am not always as enthusiastic on this front when given the opportunity. So far, with the Apple Watch, I think it really helps to be an enthusiast.

1 comment:

Jim Lyons said...

Added the parking meter timer thought - 4/1 5pm.