What is the Cheapest Apple Watch, and is it Worth It?
There is something fascinating about a watch that can do more besides telling time. A good example of such a watch is the Apple Watch. If you are a watch enthusiast, you probably want to own one but feel it may be too expensive for you. After all, you may conclude that Apple watches are expensive like other Apple products. Fortunately, you can get a budget-friendly Apple watch called Apple Watch 3.
Apple Watch 3 Overview
According to Apple Insider, you can the Apple Watch 3 from around $199 for 38mm and $229 for 42mm. It resembles the Apple Watch 2 due to its square OLED Retina display. For the stainless and ceramic models, the display is protected by sapphire crystal. As for the aluminum model, it is protected by Ion-X glass. The device has a Digital Crown and a side button on its right side. Its digital crown allows you to scroll, zoom, view the Home Screen, etc. Meanwhile, the side button can be used to see your recently used apps and even make an emergency phone call. Now that we know what the Apple Watch 3 looks like, it is time to describe its features. By describing its features, we will know whether this watch is worth buying.
1. It is Waterproof Up to a Depth of 50 Meters
This watch’s waterproof level means it can withstand shallow water activities like swimming. Therefore, it cannot be used for water skiing or scuba diving. Technically, you could shower with this watch, but there are some things you should know about showering with it. The watch is able to stay waterproof due to its gaskets. Gaskets are sensitive to soap; hence get easily destroyed. Once destroyed, the watch would cease to be waterproof. The only way for your watch to stay safe as you shower is not to use soap or use less of it.
Additionally, gaskets get destroyed by hot water from showers. That means you need to take cold showers if you must shower with it. If you decide to shower with it, you must turn on the watch’s Water Lock feature. According to Business Insider Africa, the feature locks the screen to avoid accidental taps. To locate the feature, open the Control Center by swiping upwards and then use the Digital Crown to scroll to the Water Lock icon.
2. It Allows You to Track Your Health Status
One of the ways users can track their health is through its barometric altimeter. Its barometric altimeter is ideal for hill climbing workouts since it measures your altitude. Also, this app can be used to approximate the number of stairs you have climbed. Knowing how many hills or stairs you have climbed is important since it guides you on how to conduct your workout. If you need to burn calories, you will be able to estimate the number of stairs or hills you should walk to achieve that. The watch can also be used to view your heart rate via the Heart Rate app.
This watch uses green LED lights paired with light-sensitive photodiodes to detect the level of blood flowing through your wrist. It is able to calculate the number of times the heart beats per minute by flashing the LED lights hundreds of times each second. Not only does this watch measure your heart rate, but also notifies you when you have an increased heart rate when you are inactive. Therefore, you would be able to take action to prevent the onslaught of cardiac arrests or other heart-related issues.
3. It Can Be Used to Locate Your Lost or Misplaced iPhone
If you have misplaced your iPhone before, you know how exhausting it can be to look for it. Typically, you will not even know where to begin searching. Fortunately, you can use the Apple Watch 3 watch to ping your iPhone. You can use the watch to locate your smartphone provided it is on, within a certain Bluetooth range, and has Airplane mode turned off. To ping your iPhone, swipe up to the Control Center. After that, you will see a green iPhone icon at the top of the screen, which indicates that it is connected and within range. If you tap on the icon, your phone will produce a beeping sound. In case your phone gets lost in a dark place, you can press and hold the icon. Not only will your iPhone beep, but it will also flash. Normally, it should take a beep to locate your phone. If that doesn’t happen in your case, you can ping your phone again.
4. You Can Use Siri on This Apple Watch
To use Siri on this watch, you can summon it by saying “Hey Siri” after raising your wrist or tapping the watch’s screen. You can ask the virtual assistant to open an application, send a message, play music, get directions, etc. The inclusion of this virtual assistant in this watch makes it suitable for the visually impaired. Rather than ask someone else to scroll through the contacts, the person would simply need to command Siri to help them search the contacts.
In order to use Siri on the watch, you must set it up. First, you must press the Digital Crown and then head over to the settings. Scroll down, and you should see the “Siri” option. Lastly, you can turn on the toggle that prompts Siri to listen to your “Hey Siri” command. The watch also allows you to command Siri without using your voice. You can activate the virtual assistant by holding the Digital Crown. The watch should indicate a listening indicator, which is a cue for you to ask your question.
5. You Can Use the Maps Feature in the Watch
These days, people use Maps on their iPhones to find their way, rather than ask a stranger for directions. As convenient as the iPhone is in giving directions, there are places you may not feel comfortable using it. One instance is if you are new in a certain area. If you take it out to look for directions, someone could rob you. According to an FCC report, 1 in 10 Americans are victims of smartphone theft, and this watch, therefore, prevents you from becoming a victim.
Typically, when you use the feature on phones, you will hear a voiceover telling you where to turn. It is, however, a different case with this watch. Rather than use a voiceover, the Apple Watch uses sounds and taps to let you know where to turn. For instance, if it wants you to turn right, it will use a low tone followed by a high tone. A high tone followed by a low tone means you should turn left. Once you arrive at your destination, the watch will vibrate.
6. The Apple Watch Allows You to Customize Emojis
Are you tired of being restricted to using the default yellow emojis? Thankfully, this watch allows you to customize emojis via the Memoji app. You can also create an emoji that you feel represents you. When creating an emoji, you will be allowed to choose features like skin color, headwear, glasses, hairstyles, etc. When you open Memoji on the watch, it will ask you whether or not you know how to use it. If you are unfamiliar with the app, you can select the “Get Started” option. To customize an emoji, tap on a feature you want. You will access these features by scrolling with the Digital Crown. Once you are done creating an emoji, you can send it in messages or use it as your avatar in a FaceTime video.
7. You Can Use Apple Pay in the Watch
Apple Pay is a mobile payment system that allows users to make payments in person. You can think of it as an alternative to a credit card. When you use the payment application on the iPhone, you will be prompted to confirm your identity, e.g., through Face ID or TouchID. That means you will have to take the phone out of your pocket. It will even be inconvenient if the phone is too deep in your coat’s pockets. On the other hand, Apple Pay is more convenient for the Apple Watch.
To use Apple Pay, tap twice on the side button, and your card will be displayed. Once you identify your card, you will point it at the store’s card reader. Bear in mind that you have paid without requiring any authentication. This watch became handy during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic. Unlike credit cards, Apple Pay on the watch does not require contact. When you use a credit card, the storekeeper has to touch it and give it to you. Another advantage of the app on your watch is that it is faster than credit cards. That means you do not have to wait in line longer waiting for a transaction to be approved from your credit card.
8. You Can Also Use it to Track Your Sleep
Thanks to the watch’s Sleep app, you can create schedules to help you meet your sleep goals. As long as you wear the watch in bed, it begins to track your sleeping durations. After you have woken up, you can open the Sleep app to find out how long you slept. The application can also give you your sleep trends over the past two weeks. If you go to bed with it and its power is less than 30%, the watch will remind you to charge it. That means you need to organize yourself to avoid such an inconvenience. The app allows you to create multiple schedules. For each schedule, you can set up:
- The time you want to go to bed and wake up
- Sleep Tracking, which uses your motion to detect sleep when you wear the watch to bed
- An alarm to wake you up
- A sleep goal, e.g., how many hours of sleep you want to get per day
9. You Can Make Emergency Calls From This Watch
There are two ways of making emergency calls. First, you can press and hold the side button until the sliders appear. The emergency SOS will be displayed in the third row for you to slide. This watch can call the emergency services that are available in your region, e.g., 911. In other regions, you may be required to press a keypad to complete the call. After you complete your call, the watch automatically informs your emergency contacts that you made a call and even sends them your location. The other way of making a call is by pressing and holding the side button until the watch beeps and starts a countdown. Once the countdown ends, the watch calls emergency services. Even in silent mode, the watch still continues to beep. So, if your emergency situation doesn’t require you to make noise, you should instead opt for the sliders option.
10. The Watch Has Interchangeable Bands
If you want to substitute your Apple Watch 3 model, you can use bands designed for Apple Watch Series 4 and later versions. To change your band, place the watch face down over a clean surface, e.g., a soft, padded mat. Next, hold down the band release button and slide the band to remove it. If the band doesn’t slide out, try pressing the button again while still holding it down. If you are looking for an attractive material, you could choose Marge Plus Genuine Leather for a leather band or Apple Milanese Loop if you prefer stainless steel bands. The Spigen Rugged Armor Pro is the best band if you prioritize safety. It can protect the watch’s screen from cracks and scratches.
After carefully analyzing the Apple Watch 3, do we think it is worth it? For a cheap watch, the watch is highly recommendable. This is a watch you would consider flexible. For instance, if you dislike a particular band that came with the watch, you can replace it. Also, it provides you with two ways of making emergency calls, so you choose your preferred one. So, if you want a cheap Apple Watch that is still efficient, consider getting the Apple Watch 3.