Apple only accepts complaints by ‘letter’ (update: and by email?)

20th November: I should update this article following a call from Apple Executive Relations today. Apparently you can ask for a complaint to be logged without sending a letter, which I sent this morning as it happens, and the lady who advised me that the Apple Watch was ‘very fragile’ will be spoken to (I feel bad about that). Anyway, I have to send photos of my wife’s Apple Watch and we will see what happens from there. Must say the lady I spoke to today was very professional and allayed some of my concerns, but I remain skeptical about the strength of my wife’s particular series 4 watch.

My word. I have spent many £1,000’s on Apple products over the years and have had the occasional problem with iPhone and Macs, but on the whole the support I have received has been way above what I have experienced from any other company.

A tipping point over the weekend, however, was reached when I was advised that to get a response to a complaint I had to write a letter. Yes, a letter has to be sent to the biggest tech company in the world to achieve any kind of response. For those of you who are unaware of what a letter is it would involve typing or writing some words on a piece of paper, folding up the paper, putting it in an envelope, buying a stamp to stick on the envelope, finding a postbox (that is a red thing that you may see very occasionally) and then putting it through the slot at the top. At this point it will be collected by the Royal Mail, driven to a sorting office and it will then presumably find its way to Apple where someone has to open the envelope, read the letter and then move it to the correct department. The biggest technology company in the world…

My complaint surrounds the problem my wife is having with her series 4 Apple Watch, detailed here, and the fact that to return the watch I have to pay up front (£269). This presumes that the reason the watch has broken is definitely user error and that it could not possibly be a failure of this particular device, or what is in my opinion a design fault.

My anger was not helped by the support agent I spoke to repeatedly telling me that the screen is ‘very fragile’ and that it will break if dropped. I am sure that she was trying to make me feel better, but it had the opposite effect. It should not be fragile and especially as Apple touts the use of Ion-X strengthened glass. No other watch, not one that I have owned and I have owned many, would break in the same circumstance and so I remain perplexed as to what Ion-X strengthening really is. I guess it sounds good in the marketing, but I am seeing little evidence of the benefits.

The end result is that I am returning my stainless steel Apple Watch, scared to wear it now if I am honest and won’t pay AppleCare+ for the privilege, and my wife’s watch will sit on a shelf until it is needed for freelance etc. It’s sad, but my faith in Apple has been knocked in a big way.

Drop your Apple Watch from 2 feet and the screen smashes

As you may know I have owned a lot of watches and one thing that they have all had in common is the ability to survive life. Whether they have been £10 or £1,000 I have never had a watch crystal break from a fall, and I have accidentally dropped a few of them.

My wife, however, made the mistake of dropping her series 4 Apple Watch from 2 feet onto the bathroom floor, onto the little rug around the toilet, and look what happened-

It appears to have landed on its edge and cracked the entire screen from end to end which I would argue is ridiculous. Just look at how the screen is attached to an Apple Watch and you can see where the problem is-

The screen is raised way above the case which makes it prone to damage from a variety of incidences, large and small, and in my opinion is an impractical design which is open to damage.

Add to this the fact that the Apple Watch is not heavy and that Apple touts the screen toughness, I cannot understand how it could break so easily.

Anyway, I started a chat with Apple and-

Alejandro
Thanks for contacting Apple Support. My name is Alejandro. Please give me a moment to look over your information.

Alejandro
Hi Shaun! I hope you are enjoying your day so far. I see that you need help with your Apple Watch?

Shaun McGill
Yes, it’s my wife’s Apple Watch series 4. She dropped it on the floor from about 2 feet and the screen smashed. How much is a repair for an incident like this?

Alejandro
Let me go ahead and help you with that

Alejandro
May I know in which country are you located?

Shaun McGill
UK

Alejandro
The out of warranty service fee for your Watch model it’s £286.44

Alejandro
You can double check this here: https://support.apple.com/en-gb/watch/repair/service/pricing

Shaun McGill
wow. Didn’t realise it would be so much and that it can break so easily from a 2 foot drop. OK, thanks for the information

Alejandro
It has been a pleasure Shaun! I really hope you are satisfied with my service and the information provided

Shaun McGill
Not really

£286.44!

How does a watch guy fall for the Apple Watch?

IMG_4895

When I reviewed the series 4 Apple Watch a few weeks ago I was somewhat disparaging about certain aspects. The battery life was a big downside for me, but perhaps more than anything the fact it is not a ‘real’ watch stuck with me more than anything.

I returned the watch to Apple and was happy enough, but something was nagging at me. A sense that something was missing and this was enhanced by continuing disappointment with Fitbit’s latest products. The Fitbit Charge 3 has proved to be as poor as the Fitbit Versa in terms of accuracy and with fitness currently being very important to me it was time to give up on a brand that had helped me get to the weight I was at 21 years old and which made me fitter than I had been since that age.

My experience of Apple Watch fitness has been poor over the years for a number of reasons. I don’t like the rings idea and in particular the ridiculous stand ring which is a novelty at best. However, the hardware is very accurate and I have found much consistency in the step counting, calorie calculations and the heart rate averages. This builds confidence and has given me a platform to build a fitness setup that works for me – more on that in a future article, but it’s safe to say that I have replaced the Fitbit hardware and software with arguably a much better solution.

So, the fitness was covered, after much research, and I took a punt and bought another series 4 Apple Watch. In the first few days of use I realised what had been nagging at me previously.

It’s the little things that build up to create a solution that in time feels necessary. These two examples may feel incredibly pointless, but they exemplify things that the iPhone could not do in certain situations-

I was in a meeting with a senior manager at work and my wife sent me a message asking if I wanted to walk the dog after work or if I was happy for her to do it. Being that it was a cold day I didn’t fancy ending my day getting even colder and the senior manager was sat directly opposite me so I could get my phone out without it seeming too obvious. I caught the message on the Apple Watch and managed to scroll down and send ‘OK’ as a response. The result was an hour saved later in the day and I could stay a little warmer.

The next day my daughter attended her first night at Police Cadets and was very nervous about going. We dropped her off and she had to fill in some forms, but she did not know all of the details required, which would likely have made her even more nervous. I didn’t have my iPhone with me when I saw the panicked message on my watch asking for a list of information so she could complete the forms. I replied, she was happy and the nerves subsided a little for her. This may sound unimportant, but she has had a hard time of late and attending events with groups of people is a big thing for her, and in that instance the watch helped.

So that was some of the use case covered and after wearing the Apple Watch for two weeks straight it kind of became normal. Worryingly I wasn’t missing my Oris watch as much as I expected, but there was one aspect that still bugged me. The Apple Watch felt like a bit of plastic strapped to my wrist and offer zero personality to me which is a problem for those of us who have obsessed over watches as the only bit of jewellery we wear.

I am fortunate in that I could sell a watch which would pay for a stainless steel series 4 Apple Watch and that is what I did. The final part of the experiment was to see if it felt like a real watch on the wrist while offering the functionality that I had become used to.

With the addition of a few straps to play around with I found that I started to enjoy the look of the series 4 and to this day it has remained on my wrist as my main fitness tracker, time teller and assistant which ensure I miss nothing and that my iPhone gets less use than it did before.

My wife also bought a series 4 as she was experiencing the same Fitbit problems as I was and strangely she went for the gold 44mm version. She is tiny and has small wrists, but she felt that the bigger watch looked better proportioned and despite its size it really does look good on her. Big watches on petite women always look good in my view.

The next step for me will be to see how the cellular functionality changes my usage and when my contract is moved over in a couple of days I will write about that experience, but for now I find myself surprised at the fact I am not wearing a real watch anymore and just a little bit sad at the thought of it.

£339 or £12 for an Apple Watch Strap: you decide

I love well made products and will gladly pay for a quality brand that will last me for many years, but there are moments when the price gap is just too much.

Screenshot 2018-11-10 at 16.55.55

£339 and beautifully made

There is little doubt in my mind that the above watch strap, available direct from Apple, is exceptionally well made. There is little doubt that it would look great on the wrist, but for just £90 more you can buy a whole Apple Watch series 4.

Screenshot 2018-11-10 at 16.56.24

I have just received the above strap. It is also very well made.

Having just received the strap above from Amazon for £11.99 I must say that it looks great and is very soft on the wrist. I don’t care what other people think about what is on my wrist, but I do care about saving £327 on something that is in many ways the same product.

The mix of colours struck me when I saw the Hermès offering and I get that with both products. It so happens that I went for the one that I could buy 29 times before I reached the expense of the official one.

As an aside, look at the two product images above. They are identical in almost every way, Not sure how legal this is…

APPLE WATCH SERIES 4 – FINAL THOUGHTS

I feel like a man in 2007 who doesn’t want to give up his basic Nokia phone. I can see the future coming and I don’t want to admit that one day I may need a smartphone.

The future will overtake me and I will own an iPhone or Android phone like everyone else and wonder why I ever thought my Nokia was enough for me.

I kind of feel this way about the Apple Watch. I can see a time when it could be essential, when it could be a product group that is viewed as an oddity if you do not have one strapped to your wrist. With time and the advance of technology it is conceivable that smartwatches will offer so many benefits that they becomes a must have item, and at that point they will also become fashionable and potentially luxurious.

It is hard to imagine at this time, that a device so small can be so essential, but open your mind just a little to consider the advancement of voice control, the miniaturisation of technology and the progression of power management, and it feels possible that the usefulness of such devices will outweigh the pleasure some of us get from mechanical timepieces.

Balancing gaining pleasure from a mechanical object against the sheer utility of a gadget is not easy because it is like comparing oranges and bricks, but with only two wrists and the propensity to cover just one of them at a time, something has to give.

While it is possible that a watch on one wrist and a smart device on the other could become normal, I suspect that will not happen. The inconvenient truth is that the smart one will make the elegant one feel redundant, even for those of us who love mechanical watches, and it will be a no-brainer for the rest of the population (98% minimum) who care little for watches.

There is, however, a difference between watches and phones, and history cannot be a completely accurate guide here. No one had emotional connections, not strong ones, to their basic mobile phones. There is no sense of real history, no passing down through the generations and thus they are automatically replaceable. You will never see a vintage Apple Watch that is valuable or that can even be used in the future, and at no point will one ever be seen as an emotional object which is kind of strange for something you wear.

I suspect that the Apple Watch, and the other smartwatches, have come along at the right time. In a moment when young people tell the time with their phones and when even many older people do not bother with a watch. The time is ripe for a new product category and those of us who love the tradition of mechanical watches are in the most minor of minorities.

Onto the Apple Watch itself.

I was hugely disappointed with the Series 4 at one point because of the battery, but that seems to have settled to the point that 45 minutes of charging per day will likely be enough to keep it running the rest of the time. It still irks me when compared to the likes of Fitbit and Garmin, but it is manageable.

The Series 4 is a huge improvement design-wise over the previous four models and that screen matters more than you may expect for making touch points feel natural and for displaying the information you require without the need to squint. The way it hugs the wrist has been improved a great deal with a flatter sensor at the bottom, the Series 3 sensor lifts the entire watch from the wrist, and a more consistent form throughout.

It is extremely fast, extremely convenient and for a variety of tasks could be considered essential. For runners who want music and podcasts on the move and who do not want to carry a phone with them, the cellular version will be close to perfect.

For those who are new to fitness and who do not realise that Fitbit and Garmin do a ‘much’ better job in this area it could help them become much more healthy. And for those who for whatever reason find the iPhone impractical to use when working, the notifications and basic interactivity will feel more than a little useful.

Apple has moved the Apple Watch up a huge notch with the Series 4 and it feels like the iPhone 4 to me. The sudden design change and extra usability will make it more appealing to more people, just like the iPhone 4 did, and look what followed. If the Apple Watch Series 4 is the iPhone 4 equivalent, I am very curious to see what the Apple Watch Series 10 will be.

For the moment, however, it is still not for me and for two reasons. Firstly my love for mechanical watches which may be on borrowed time and secondly the fact that the Fitbit Versa, Ionic and various Garmin smartwatches are more practical on a day to day level, mainly because of the battery life. They most certainly have their faults, of that there is no doubt, but they have been designed to give the user what they need without the requirement to charge it too often and to mess about making it work how they need it to.

I have moments of clarity where I just sit and think. Moments when I don’t want to be interrupted and just need to consider what happens next, and as silly as it sounds in those moments I like to look at my watch, play around with it and just enjoy it. The Apple Watch is not for those moments and it is not for people who want a zero hassle experience, and if they did want a smartwatch I would still have to recommend one that does not require a daily charge to get through the day.

Apple Watch Series 4 – Day 4. The battery

Yesterday the Series 4 was charged to 100% when I left home for work at 6:05am.

At precisely 3:07pm it had dropped down to 65% with one outdoor walk monitored using GPS – this walk was approx.. 35 minutes. The rest of the usage was standard notifications and just telling the time.

It took until 3:57pm to get back to 100% which may not sound like a bad time, but take that to charging from 0% and you get 114 minutes. That, in my opinion, is a lot of time to have to charge a smartwatch each day, and it is time that gets in the way of what you may have bought it for in the first place.

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Now, I get that most people will plonk their Apple Watch on the charger overnight and that they will start the day at 100%, which should get it through the whole day, but what about sleep tracking?

I realise that this is not a standard feature of the Apple Watch, but boy does Apple bang on about the fitness and health benefits of the product, and it cannot monitor one of the most important health areas? Using a third party app such as AutoSleep does this very well, but it means that you have to wear the watch all night and then you need to find time in the day to charge it. You need to find approx.. 2 hours.

Anyway, forget all of that because it is not just about sleep tracking.

Firstly, it is about the hassle and having to remember to charge it every day. This is an annoyance and one which should not be there in 2018, and especially not in a watch. There is no excuse for it if you ask me and especially when I look at what the competition can do.

Take the Fitbit Versa, the Ionic, the Garmin smartwatches and many others. Five days of continuous battery life with GPS, sleep tracking, heart rate sensors, workout tracking and in some cases an always on screen. How can they do that when Apple can barely manage one day?

There is a very good argument surrounding the quality of the display and the completeness of WatchOS, but why would you push the limits of battery performance on a device that you wear? It is a huge downside for anyone who really does want to use the Apple Watch all of the time, and especially so because Series 4 is otherwise quite brilliant.

I find the Apple Watch to be a device that could potentially offer many advantages that collectively build to create a new type of device that can take you away from your phone for extended periods. It needs to be seamless in operation though and for this to happen you don’t want to be worrying about where the power is coming from.

As good as the Series 4 is, until Apple realises that sometimes you have to accept the technical limitations of the time to create a truly positive user experience the product may feel like a struggle to some users. With such potential a product like this needs to be extremely easy to leverage in terms of the capability it offers, but for me personally that means looking at the fundamental issue of power.


I will return to this subject in a few days because the today I was at 68% by 6pm. Go figure? Maybe it is taking time for the battery to charge up fully – we shall see.

Apple Watch Series 4 – Day 3. Oooh, aaah.

This is getting tricky now.

I have decided to not go into too much detail about all of the features and the myriad things you can do with the Series 4. Those things have been covered by people with more time than me, better video cameras and so much knowledge of every aspect of the device. These people look at the Series 4 from the angle of someone already embedded in the world of mobile technology whereas I prefer to look at it from the perspective of someone considering if a smartwatch will benefit me and if it is worth giving up other things for. In short, the 98% of people not obsessed with technology.

It is getting tricky because I am really liking the Series 4.

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The novelty factor is always at the back of mind, but I have owned a lot of Apple Watches in the past and this is the first one that feels truly useful and worthy of being a watch. It’s super fast, easy to navigate and looks great on the wrist. The battery is a big problem for me in that a day of usage is just about feasible, just about, and so I would need to be regimented in how I charge it.

I am going to stop the review here for a few days and will be back with my final thoughts at the end of the week. It’s Oris vs Apple Watch time and there is no option of using both. If the Apple Watch is to be my fitness tracker it would be a daily wear and in my view is not something you wear occasionally. It would also need to replace my Fitbit and that may be even harder to manage. Time will tell I guess.

Apple Watch Series 4 – Day 2. Still limited, but less so

Any Apple product is an exercise in control and this brings with it good and bad experiences for the user.

On an iPhone you can only run iOS approved apps, you cannot use game emulators and you are limited in terms of what you can do with regards to even changing icons for apps. It is all commonly complained about by Android users, and I see the point, but I am also happy to sit back and have a phone that works 24 hours a day, 365 days a year as a trade off. I can live without some customisation if it means I get a more consistent overall experience.

It is less limited on the Mac of course and no one could persuade me that a Windows PC is worth the money compared to a Mac. The initial cost is easily retrieved over extended use and potentially much lower running costs (virus protection, software upgrades etc).

On the Apple Watch, however, I find very specific limitations that make little sense to me. They are choice driven and do nothing to make watchOS more stable. Some examples included-

Photo 22-09-2018, 19 43 25

The stand ring is completely pointless, in my humble opinion.

No steps complication which is crazy. Putting your steps on a watch face is such a simple thing to do because the data is already there and it would make the Apple Watch feel more like a fitness tracker to those using competing products from the likes of Fitbit and Garmin. You can achieve this using an app like Pedometer++, but the complication is slow to update and I remain confused by the mix of data coming from the iPhone motion processor and the Apple Watch. The data goes to the Health app on the iPhone and can also be found by having to scroll (too far) in the Activity app on the watch or iPhone.

The new watch faces are a definite improvement and I particularly like Infograph. The fact that you cannot adjust the colours of any widgets, however, means that you end up with either a bizarre mix of colours that are too busy or a very nice looking watch face that cannot include the widgets you want to see. The clamour for Apple to allow third party watch faces continues, it would be a huge business after all, but at this time the ability to build a consistent theme on the watch faces through colour choices would be an improvement.

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It takes work to avoid an overly colourful clock face.

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This one looks great, but lacks the complications I need.

The workouts are laid out in a specific order which will apparently change as the watch learns what you like to do. This is useful, but not allowing the user to choice the order in which these appear seems arrogant and verging on mean spirited. It is perhaps the most obvious ‘We are Apple, we know best’ software feature in watchOS 5.

None of the above is a deal breaker for me apart from maybe the steps complication purely on the basis that it would be so incredibly useful to my fitness regime.

On the subject of fitness I am seeing much improved performance when working out with GPS not killing the battery half as fast as it used to. Overall, I am seeing approximately 50-60% battery left by the start of the next day. This is not too bad and is suggestive of 2 days per charge, but it still lacks in comparison to the smartwatch offerings from Garmin and Fitbit.

Batteries are something that Apple seems to think about differently to everything else. My iPhone X struggles to get through a whole day at least twice a week and charging a watch every two days feels like a chore because when you are doing this you are not tracking your heart rate, your activity or seeing the benefits the device is supposed to offer. ‘Just enough’ appears to be the motto for Apple and the watch, and this applies to the iPhone as well. It is the one area that I would like to see Apple concentrate the most on solving for the long term, but I don’t expect it to anytime soon.

I am literally forcing myself to wear the Apple Watch and I do not like doing so. I like to wear a real watch and the Series 4 feels like an imposter, another computer that is attached to me and one that I do not need. The problem, however, is that it is growing on me.

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Even news articles can be read easily now. Well, as easily as anything about Brexit can be read…

The larger display means a huge amount and makes so many tasks easier than they were before. I used to continually feel as though I was doing things on the watch for no good reason, but now it feels a lot more natural. Visually retrieving information now feels logical and with so many complications on offer at one time it quickly becomes a normal way of working. My iPhone can sit on the shelf for longer periods which is a bonus for its battery and the process of using the watch has stopped me using my iPhone so much for no other reason than to just use it, for browsing, gaming etc.

This is a process for me and one that I am fighting against, but something is building the more I use the Series 4. A sense that it now offers a range of benefits that I had previously missed is growing all of the time. That worries me…

Apple Watch Series 4 – day 1. What is it exactly?

Well, I have one and it cost £429. A sum that many people say is too high and an example of the way Apple overprices its products. This particular model is the 44mm GPS version and you can go slightly lower by opting for the 40mm version at £399. Or, you can go much higher and choose the 44mm Stainless Steel Case with Milanese Loop for £849 which also offers cellular functionality, if your mobile provider is supported of course.

So, we shall ignore the Apple Watch Hermès Stainless Steel Case with Fauve Barenia Leather Single Tour Deployment Buckle at £1,499 and consider that one for those who have more than enough money to spare, people who will make up a tiny proportion of Apple Watch users. What people fail to see, however, is that the Series 4 is actually very competitively priced in the wider watch world. You get a sapphire crystal, seriously good finishing and a ceramic back which are unheard of in any watch that retails for £400. Take a look around at watches in that price bracket and only a handful will offer these materials or attention to detail, and at first thought I cannot think of one that offers both.

UPDATE: You don’t get a sapphire crystal on the front, you get one on the back only with the GPS model and so you need the stainless steel model for a sapphire front crystal, which kind of kills some of what I said above.

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As an object described as a ‘watch’ the Series 4 is exceptional value with only one aspect drilling a hole in this theory – the temporary nature of its existence. In three years time it may be that your Series 4 is slowing down and that it cannot use the latest watchOS features, and it is likely that the latest Apple Watch will force you to change on an emotional level alone. For £400 this is a big expense, but if you are prepared to not think of it as a watch it may feel acceptable. If I am honest it doesn’t to me because I am a watch guy. I wear a £1,600 Oris which some will see as extravagant, but it could be on my wrist for 25 years and keep me informed of the time every day without me ever needing to charge it or interact with it in any way apart from changing the date and adjusting the time every month.

My Oris will grow more special over time as I experience new things with it and it will never become outdated on a technical level. It is mine for as long as I want to enjoy it and to me that makes the price feel more acceptable. I recognise that the majority will feel that a watch should not cost this much and I get that, but I also cannot quite grasp the notion of spending £100’s on a watch that will last only a few years. The more I think about it, the more confused I get trying to compare and rationalise these products; £100’s on a smartphone feels fine because we are used to that, £100’s on a watch is OK because we are used to that, but a smartwatch falls somewhere in between and it may take a few more years for it to find a comfortable home in the minds of the masses, just like the smartphone did.

One thing I can admit though, as someone who really does love traditional mechanical watches, is that the smartwatch is going to do serious damage to the retail watch industry and that the below £500 watch market is in for a tough time very soon. Luxury mechanical watches will continue as they are now, but a little bit of me sees them as potentially being akin to carrying around a record player to listen to music, hipster style. None of us know the future, but it would be more than foolish to suggest that the smartwatch industry is going to do anything other than grow exponentially.

Apple’s higher-end bands put most Swiss watch companies to shame. Apple’s link bracelet is extremely nice, and features a way to add and remove links to adjust the size that requires nothing more than your thumbnail. No one else has a link bracelet like this. The whole idea of easily swappable bands and straps — using nothing more than your thumbnail — is an astounding innovation. It’s a key driver of Apple Watch’s success as a watch. People have been wearing wristwatches for over 100 years, but until Apple entered the market no company had ever thought to design a connector system that would allow for seasonal new straps and bands. It helps make Apple Watch fun for owners and helps make money for Apple.

Apple didn’t start with one band and slowly grow its lineup over time. They entered on day one with an incredible strap lineup. No one would say Apple Watch debuted as the nicest watch in the world. But you can argue it debuted with the nicest lineup of straps.

John Gruber, above, came up with an argument that makes perfect sense. Apple changed how we think of watch bands overnight because it has the power to do so, but he misses the point somewhat by confusing an Apple Watch with a mechanical watch. The latter uses traditional strap pins because that is what we have used for decades previous. They fit the ethos of a mechanical watch which is to not necessarily be the best, but which is designed to be more organic, more personal and to be more than it is in terms of its history and feel. Adding a new mechanism-based strap to a classic mechanical watch would feel like installing a Tesla dashboard screen in a Jaguar E-Type.

This is something many tech and watch reviewers do. They choose when the Apple Watch is actually a watch based on if it suits the argument or puts their preferred product in a better light.

The first 10 minutes

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One thing Apple does very well is to make that first few seconds feel good. No one makes unboxing a gadget feel better than Apple in the tech sector, and coincidentally the only companies that do match Apple are the higher end watch brands. The difference is that Apple does it at a much lower price point and this should be applauded.

With Series 4 the unboxing experience is more friendly and somewhat different than before. It would actually take some time to explain the required steps to open everything, but the fact that it all makes sense immediately is a bonus. The watch and strap come in different boxes now and there is a lovely cloth protector surrounding the watch itself when you open it.

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Everything is perfectly proportioned and it feels great throughout with only a minute passing before you are ready to plonk it on the charger and start the setup process. Scrap that, 89% battery charge already on the watch is another positive so I didn’t bother charging it. I simply pointed my iPhone at the watch face and let it do its things which thankfully only took a couple of minutes. It would appear that on launch day the latest software is already installed because otherwise I would have expected many many more minutes of setup, which has been painfully slow in the past.

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On the wrist

The Series 4 feels different than previous Apple Watches with the tiny physical changes making a big difference to how the form works. Series 4 feels more consistent and as if the footprint and depth have been designed with each in mind. Series 3 did not feel this way. It felt far too high, too small on the diagonal and that red dot on the crown was hideous- overall Series 3 was a rare misstep from the Apple design team who appear to have learned some lessons with Series 4.

It is very hard to explain what makes a watch feel right and what tiny design flaw can through it off, but this one works much better than models 0 to 3 and that is despite the fact it is square(ish). The corner curves are more prominent than before which seems to add to the sense that this is a watch, and this is enhanced further by the fuller use of the available screen dimensions.

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I am not seeing the ‘huge’ screen that some reviewers have already raved about because this does still feel like an Apple Watch, but I am sensing that it feels more practical, easier to use and that the possibilities are more wide-ranging now than they have been in the past.

Give me a couple more days and I will be back with more…

Before I come back, I should add that it does appear that the software designers are having some issues working out when too much colour in a watch face is too much.

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Apple Watch Series 4: disposable luxury

The above video highlights just how impressive the Apple Watch Series 4 looks in stainless steel, especially in the tone of gold Apple has chosen.

For the price it is an impressive collection of components; sapphire, stainless steel, a really good bracelet and the general level of finish which puts it on a par and possibly ahead of many other watchmakers in terms of quality for the price.

However, this is not a watch for life whereas you could potentially spend £900 on a watch and wear it for decades. Tricky to balance.