May 22nd, 2015

The Apple Watch and Email

Last night, I received my Apple Watch. I then went _slightly_ nuts setting it up. I put LastPass on it, and then thought better and removed it. I created a PlayList and synced it onto the Watch, then paired the Watch with my headphones -- then realized the power-saving needs that motivated a network topology choice that is probably going to drive us all slightly bonkers over time (basically, if you pair your headset with your Watch so you can listen to music while away from your phone, you are going to have to unpair from the Watch and re-pair with the phone when you come back to the phone or you won't be able to receive calls on your headset). I realized that if you put your Dunkin' Donuts card in your Passbook, you don't need a Dunkin' Donuts app on the Watch to pay for stuff using your DD card -- it's right there in Passbook. In fact, it's not at all clear why you need that Starbucks app on your Watch, because the same applies to Starbucks payments. I put a credit card into Apple Pay. I did not have to adjust any notifications, because I've been relentless in reducing notifications on the phone anyway, so they are basically right for the Watch (that was an odd discovery). Big takeaways: the Watch App is the new iTunes application on your computer from Back In the Day. I'm sure we'll all do a lot of cursing over time, altho it is great at the moment. Oh, and if you ever wondered what Passbook was for, well, it truly comes into its own on the Watch.

I eventually went to bed (oh, hey, there's a Mickey Mouse watch face!) and, mind racing from the slightly manic interactions with the Watch, I thought you know, first off, this thing is a lot geekier than I really realized (I foolishly thought that the Watch would make me look less nerdy than the FitBit plus Baby G. Ha! Au contraire, mes amis, au contraire.). And second, how the hell are ordinary people going to set this thing up? I've spent a disgusting amount of time picking apps and setting up accounts and managing login credentials and blah blah bleeping blah. It is not easy for even Aw Shucks I'm Not That Big A Nerd, Am I me to believe that this is going to be simple for a typical purchaser.

Apple, apparently, has concluded something similar. They sent me email. Actually, they've sent me a _lot_ of email lately. Your Apple Watch Will Arrive Soon! It's here already, dear. Schedule a Personal Setup Appointment! Hunh, that would have been pretty interesting to know about before I had run through the whole process myself. Learn How to Get Started Using Apple Pay. Look, I haven't been to the store yet. Give me a sec, alright? Oh, wait, you mean how to enter your cc. Ah. Well. Okay then. Receive messages on your wrist and respond right away with an emoji. Yup, my High Priestess has already received an animated emoji in reply to a message she sent me. I've also called my husband from the phone, Dick Tracy style (wow, that made me feel nerdy. Also, not awesome sound quality. I haven't made a call through the headset and Watch yet). Use the Watch as a remote for your phone's camera. Yup.

I even set up the watch with Apple TV today, and experimented with using it as an Apple TV remote.

As gadgets go, I have to say this is probably the single most awesome gadget experience I have ever had. It beats the phone, because the phone is _so_ useful, I've always thought of it more as a networked supercomputer in my pocket, rather than as Just a Gadget. The Watch is still in the realm of Gadget, tho, and setting it up has been ludicrously straightforward (thank you, all you bloggers who took pictures of every damn thing you did, so I could google you and not even have to _think_ about how to swipe to do something because you were there to tell me and show me).

Also, it's a perfectly acceptable Watch. Still testing the activity tracker.