Apple Watch 2 review: There’s finally a reason to buy a smartwatch

September 18, 2016 - running watch

We tested a Apple Watch Series 2

If we had to collect a new Apple Watch Series 2 out of a lineup of existent Apple Watches, you’d be tough pulpy to do so.

It looks scarcely matching to a initial denote that launched usually 18 months ago. Even after tinkering around with a latest iteration, it’s a plea to brand what’s indeed new.

But there’s some-more to a Apple Watch’s initial vital hardware ascent than meets a eye. To start, a arrangement is dual times brighter, so you’ll be means to review it improved outside. It’s also 50% faster than a prior chronicle and it’s finally waterproof.

It’s also become, perhaps, one of a smartest aptness trackers we can put on your wrist. The new Apple Watch is essentially focused on activity monitoring — an area Apple says early adopters have praised most.

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Apple Watch Series 2

But a smartwatch difficulty in ubiquitous hasn’t taken off a approach it once seemed unfailing to. Impressively, however, Apple has somehow managed to turn a second many renouned watchmaker in a world, even though Apple Watch sales were down 55% this year. That’s second usually to Rolex.

While there’s a plain collection of bells and whistles combined to a latest Apple Watch, are a updates value trade in your existent one? Certainly not.

It does, however, give non-Apple Watch users some-more inducement than ever to buy one.

The look

The Apple Watch Series 2 comes with dual categorical physique options — aluminum or immaculate steel (both $349) — and can be interconnected with a accumulation of sporty, leather or nylon bands.

Although Apple (AAPL, Tech30) recently pulled a $10,000 bullion Edition denote from a lineup, it now has a neat ceramic chronicle ($1,299) to interest to oppulance shoppers. It’s beautiful, though too many of an investment for a product that’s firm to change soon.

Apple Watch Series 2 photo

Apple also forsaken a cost of a Series 1 denote to $269, though it’s now versed with a same absolute dual-core processor as a new watch. You can’t take it for a swim, though a new program creates it a cheaper approach to exam expostulate some of a new features.

Meanwhile, watchOS 3 is all about customization. There are new watch faces (and ways to personalize stream ones), as good as iMessage Stickers integration, some-more notifications and aptness functionality.


Sure, we can get calendar, email and content notifications — and all of those come in accessible — though where a Series 2 succeeds many is a aptness tracking capabilities.

Fitbit has prolonged dominated a aptness tracker industry, though a Apple Watch can now do roughly all that Fitbit’s tip trackers can do, and so many more.

Like a Fitbit Charge 2 ($150), we can take it in a pool, get your heart-rate information in genuine time, channel your respirating with a awareness app and lane your routes around GPS.

Apple Watch Series 2 Activities

The Apple Watch’s GPS formation is a good perk for runners who don’t wish to drag along an iPhone. Unlike other trackers with built-in GPS, a Apple Watch uses locally stored satellite information to quick brand locations. It takes a bit longer to get this underline going on other trackers.

Starting a examination is as easy as it gets — in fact, we can ask Siri to do it for you. You can also confirm that metrics we wish to seem on a display, and examination information can be saved, labeled and sent to friends.

Related: Fitbit unveils dual new aptness trackers — including one we can take in a pool

Where a Apple Watch falls short, however, is that it doesn’t support built-in nap tracking, one of a some-more renouned facilities on customary Fitbits or Jawbones. Sleep information helps paint a full design of your altogether health and can brand because we competence not be as complacent a subsequent day.

Apple Watch Sleep Tracking

It’s bizarre Apple hasn’t nonetheless baked in this functionality, though several third-party apps such as Pillow or Sleep Cycle fill in a gaps. The downside is they’ll empty your battery overnight.

But distinct a Fitbit or other customary trackers, a Apple Watch still lets we make a cooking reservation on OpenTable, check your email and bucket adult your JetBlue boarding pass. Whether or not it’s value splurging $200 some-more for these additions is adult to you.


Although we could technically wear a prior Apple Watch in a shower, a association has left all in on job a latest chronicle waterproof.

Apple Watch casing

We dunked it in and out of H2O several times, and a guarantee hold true. You don’t need to switch on a special mode when it’s firm for water, though there is a H2O close arrangement underline that can be used while you’re swimming, so we don’t incidentally strike a shade and stop a workout.

Apple Watch Series 2 Waterproof

After it’s private from water, a watch will wish to pull out unconnected H2O collected by a dual holes on a surrounding (the opening and a speaker). By dire a H2O idol on a display, it’ll make a array of droplet-like sounds and ban any moisture.


While a device is really removing smarter, there’s still some room for improvement.

In further to no nap tracking, a Apple Watch Series 2 doesn’t come with built-in internet connectivity, that means you’ll need to keep your iPhone nearby. Apple reportedly designed to supplement mobile use to a latest watch though it was canned after using into growth issues.

If the dismissal of a headphone jack on a latest iPhone is any indication, Apple’s pull toward an untethered destiny means we might get mobile connectivity on a Apple Watch Series 3.

So should we buy an Apple Watch?

It depends on what you’re looking for. If you’re only focused on fitness, save your money and go for a Fitbit. But for a one-stop-shop wearable — one that lets we also stay on tip of email, margin calls and lane your activity — a Apple Watch is a approach to go. That said, a Series 1 denote — now $100 cheaper — is twice as quick as it once was and can run watchOS 3. Unless you’re an active swimmer or critical runner, a Series 1 might be your best bet.

Whether we confirm to splurge for a Series or not, one thing is clear: a Apple Watch is finally removing closer to where it should have been all along.

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