The small notable of Apple is back with a more sophisticated design and new features. Is it time to invest in a smart watch? Check out our review of the Apple Watch Series 4.
O Apple Watch Series 4 represents the biggest evolution in the design of smartwatch Apple since its introduction in 2014 and with refinements in the software executed in recent years, the Series 4 it becomes one of the most desired accessories for iPhone owners.
Even so, old questions remain: among those who are still not convinced of the usefulness or need for a Apple Watch, is that the version to persuade them? And for those who have already surrendered, is the update worth it?
Follow our review of Series 4 and draw your own conclusions.
Layout and Finishing
O Apple Watch we analyzed the version with 40mm box, GPS + Cellular and golden aluminum finish. O Series 4 the most attractive watch ever produced by Apple and definitely one of the smartwatches most elegant on the market.
The biggest novelty in terms of aesthetics is the OLED screen curved over the edges of the display creating the feeling that it extends across the entire display of the watch and blends perfectly with metal. The screen display area is 30% higher than the previous generation Apple Watch, which makes the smaller model more practical than in previous generations.
Good news though that the sizes of the Series 4 larger, the old bracelets continue to fit the new Apple Watches. The 38mm bracelets fit on the 40mm model and the 42mm bracelets on the 44mm model.
Although Apple calls the newest color in the Apple Watch Series 4 just “golden“, The tone is more similar to the Golden Rose (Rose Gold) used by the brand on iPhones and MacBooks rather than the most yellow gold available on first generation of Apple Watch. The model in matte aluminum, available in black, silver and gold, elegant and functional, but if you are willing to spend, it is worth checking out the beautiful stainless steel versions.
In the past two years Apple has launched a special edition of Watch in ceramics, but this time chose not to release a version in that material. The models produced in partnership with Nike and the Herms brand, however, have been updated and are available as Series 4.
THE Digital Crown, the wheel used to navigate the clock menus, underwent a reengineering process, but the change is invisible to the user with two exceptions: in 4G models, the face is not completely painted red; there is only a discreet ring around the button and now the crown has a tactile response, small vibrations used as feedback to the user as it is rotated (similar to what Apple already does on iPhones with 3D Touch).
A change from the layout of the Apple Watch Series 3 was the repositioning of the speakers. They were transferred to the left side of the device to facilitate the capture of audio by the microphone, which is on the right side. Although they are powerful and work very well on phone calls, Apple quite limits what can be played over the speakers; Apple Music and Podcasts, for example, only with headphones.
Apple also revamped the bottom of the watch, replacing the old metal finish with ceramic. The models with GPS already used this material, but from the Series 4 all Apple Watches will feature the coating. Appearance part, without a doubt the most impressive novelty was the inclusion of an electric cardiac sensor capable of executing electrocardiograms, in addition to the traditional optical sensor used to measure beats per minute.
The new version of the OS Apple Watch, watchOS 5 brings some interesting news and is much faster, but makes few structural changes in the functioning of the system. WatchOS has gradually gained more independence from the Watch application on the iPhone (and the iPhone in general), but there is still a lot to evolve in this direction.
Perhaps the biggest change in watchOS 5 in terms of interaction with the watch is the ability to trigger the Crab just raising your wrist and reciting the command, without saying "And the, Siri" before, nor hold any buttons. Speaking of buttons, a note: a gesture-based interface, iPhone X, would also be very welcome on watchOS. Few will miss pressing the button on the Digital Crown to return to the display.
Apple does not yet allow the creation of displays by third-party developers, so you will have to use only those made available by Ma itself. This is not a problem for me, as I prefer more minimalist interfaces and I am satisfied with the existing options, but I recognize that it would be a interesting addition.
For those who like to view as much information as possible on a single screen, the company started offering a new type of display called Infographic, which allows up to 8 complications (buttons /widgets that you can add on the screen).
Like iOS 12, watchOS 5 now groups notifications from the same app in the tight notification center of Apple Watch, what welcome. Another interesting addition is the ability to display web pages on the watch itself. It is not the best internet browsing experience you will ever have, but it breaks a branch.
O Apple Watch possibly the accessory manufactured by Apple that depends most on the user's devotion to the company's apps and services ecosystem. As third-party support for watchOS is far inferior to that given to iOS, the richest and most productive experiences occur in the apps of the manufacturer itself, such as Apple Music, Apple Maps, iMessage, etc.
Only eleven apps out of more than fifty installed on my iPhone have versions for watchOS. Of these I installed the ones that I found most useful, but in certain cases the result was a little frustrating.
The Shazam music recognition service, which was recently acquired by Apple, for example, had a harder time identifying music when triggered by Apple Watch and in some cases nothing returned. When asking for a ride through the Uber app, the destination was not informed to the driver, I had to enter it by iPhone. The Alelo card application is very useful for checking balance, but has the habit of asking the user to “authorize” the use by Watch through the iPhone.
Developers' relative lack of enthusiasm for operating systems wearable it is not exclusive to Apple and the company is certainly the best positioned to reverse this scenario. The arrival of apps like Spotify and Telegram are relevant reinforcements for the platform's catalog.
That said, there are quite positive experiences. An interesting one is the Microsoft Authenticator. The configuration of the app is somewhat confusing, but the process of authorizing access to Outlook by watch is very practical. The same goes for the Step Two app, which allows you to view verification tokens in two steps right on Apple Watch.
Another highlight is PackageVcio to track the status of package deliveries (thank you, Black Friday) and the numbers apps focused on sports and fitness, like Runkeeper, Swim and Strava.
But really in the integration with the Apple world that the Watch really shines. The ability to control Apple Music on Apple TV and iPhone from Watch, increase or decrease the volume on AirPods, viewing exercise, breathing and heart rate data in the Sade app, synchronizing reminders, calendars, photos and first-rate integration with iMessage demonstrate the full potential of the watch for those who completely surrender to the ecosystem.
Leave your cell phone at home and go for a run or walk wearing only your headphones and the watch is one of the most liberating experiences provided by the combination of Apple Watch and AirPods and in my opinion, one of the best reasons to invest in a Watch. The launch of the app Podcasts on watchOS 5 it was also an important gain in this regard.
Monitoring of physical activities and exercises is the flagship of the Apple Watch; just look at the advertising materials of the product, always showing people playing sports and sweating their shirts.
The application Activity the central fitness of Watch. it is where the user tracks his / her goals (the famous colored circles) of movement / calories, exercise and standing.
The watch keeps the owner informed of progress, sending reminders and motivational messages so that the circles are closed by the end of the day. In particular, I find this type of monitoring much more relevant than the old goal of 10,000 steps a day employed by others wearables with fitness features.
For sports players, the app Exercises already includes a series of pre-configured workouts such as walking, running, elliptical, rowing, swimming (the Series 4 waterproof to 50 meters) and two new features: yoga and trail. Just select the desired activity and start moving.
The “athlete” can set goals such as distance, calories and time and follow them by the clock during the training, as well as heart rate.
If you forget to start training manually, the Series 4 it can identify when one of these exercises has started or ended and issues a notification asking whether the activity should be recorded.
If you practice running, the Watch it has new types of progress monitoring for this exercise, such as pace alerts, steps per minute and performance comparison in relation to the previous kilometer.
The search for a healthier and less sedentary life is one of the greatest strengths today in the device market wearable it's the Apple Watch Series 4 has successfully positioned itself as an option both for those who are just starting to move and want to get up a bit off the couch and for more intense and experienced practitioners.
The user's physical and mental health is one of the biggest Apple Watch Series 4 and new features introduced in this model take this mission to an even higher level.
An interesting addition to fall detection. This function recognizes that the user has taken a strong fall and automatically triggers the emergency services and selected contacts if the person does not move for more than a minute. The resource has great potential in the care of elderly patients and is activated by default for individuals over 65 years of age.
O heart rate monitor embedded in the device, in addition to recording beats, it is able to detect very high or very low frequencies. If you notice a change in heart rate, Watch notifies the user so he can seek medical help.
As I mentioned at the beginning of review, O Series 4 it has an electrical cardiac sensor for performing electrocardiograms, but unfortunately the feature is not yet available in Brazil. Apple released it through a software update (watchOS 5.1.2) in the USA only. The American agency responsible for the inspection of medical devices (FDA) has already approved the use of the device for this purpose, but Apple has not given details about the progress of the approval in other countries. It is worth noting that the FDA does not consider the Apple Watch a replacement for traditional methods of diagnosis.
An area in which the Apple Watch continues to owe sleep monitoring. There is still no standard app for measuring sleep quality in Series 4 and although there is no shortage of options in the App Store, the best apps of this type are paid. In 2017 Apple acquired a startup called Beddit, whose main product is a sensor placed under the sheet to analyze sleep, breathing, environment, snoring, etc. therefore it is possible that the company will have news soon in this sense.
Apple promises 18 hours battery life, which is very close to the result we had in the days we spent with the Series 4. The 4G connection of the Watch it was not used in these tests and as the notorious cellular signal consuming the battery, the caveat is.
On days where the use of Apple Watch Series 4 it was smaller, the clock came to be close to 36 hours away from the plug, but during periods of more intense use (exercises, GPS, Bluetooth audio), it was necessary to charge it on the same date, night. The screen brightness was kept low or medium.
O Apple Watch Series 4 starts costing R $ 3,999. For that price you get the 40mm version with aluminum finish, GPS and sports bracelet (standard model or Nike +). Sport bracelets are affordable and comfortable to wear, but in my opinion they leave the watch with a somewhat “cheap” aspect, as it does not value the case design so much.
From then on, prices vary according to cellular connection (none or 4G), material (aluminum / stainless steel), case size (40mm / 44mm) and chosen bracelet (sports / leather / steel); the most fashionistas can prepare the pocket: the Herms models with 44mm steel case and leather bracelet cost stratosfricos R $ 13,999.
And one more detail: to use the 4G connection in Apple Watch It is mandatory to hire a specific data plan that in Brazil is offered only by Claro and costs R $ 29.99 per month.