Tech Review: Apple Watch Series 3 with GPS + Cellular

I purchased my Apple Watch on the evening of 23 February 2018 after work, so I’ve had it for just over two months now. I went to the actual Apple store in Brisbane City and had the absolute time of my life purchasing something like this after being served by two, yes two, incredible sales assistants.

The lady who sold it to me I found out was a vegan/yogi, so immediately I knew I was in good hands of someone who got me on a personal level too, not that that’s required when buying an Apple Watch, but I’m extremely passionate about good customer service, and that she gave me after spending an entire hour with me, getting to know me and making sure I left with exactly what I wanted. She actually ended up making it feel like an empowerment purchase, because I explained how most of my hard earned money goes to bills, or others, and so she made me feel like I more than deserved this device when I was doubting that I did throughout the experience.

Shall we get into my personal review of the specifications of the version I chose, the pro’s versus the con’s and if I really do love and believe it was worth the investment? Read on..

Specifications

My Apple Watch

  • Apple Watch Series 3
  • 38 mm
  • stainless steel case
  • sapphire crystal glass
  • ceramic back
  • GPS + Cellular (LTE)
  • WR 50 m

Came with

  • soft white sport band
  • magnetic charging cable
  • 5W USB power adapter

Firstly I want to point out that I do not believe that to have a love for the Apple Watch that you need to get the one with all the bells and whistles like I have. The version I bought is currently the top of the range, but for me if I was going to do this, really do something like this, I wanted the best and I wanted it to last.

The stainless steel case and sapphire crystal glass, though two features that make this version more expensive than the standard aluminium and glass, for me where a big must if I were going to get one as I tend to be a little clumsy when it comes to my watches and knocking them about on a daily basis (you’d be surprised how much you knock a watch around in an office environment and of course, when you workout).

The stainless steel case adds durability for a longer life overall of the case, and the sapphire glass is scratch resistant, my glass is still as beautiful, clean and scratch free as it was when I first bought it. Of course, both of these things are also great if you drop things, like phones, Apple Watch’s can absolutely smash if you drop it on a not so friendly surface. In saying that, if you add on Apple Care when you first purchase it, which I did, this covers pretty much anything you can think of when it comes to your watch and will give you peace of mind when investing in such a pricey item like this. Something definitely worth looking into before you purchase (and no, as much as you may be thinking it’s another salesperson move, I don’t believe it’s an add on scam at all when it comes to free glass replacements for the life of your Apple Care). Perhaps research how much replacements are and make a decision from there.

Pro’s

  1. Fitness – My initial reason for purchasing an Apple Watch was to align it with my fitness. I have had another brand of ‘fitness tracker’ in the past, and to be honest it did not last long at all with how often I wanted to wear and use it, but having a quality Apple Watch that will last to keep me on track with my daily goals through their ‘ring closing’ feature and notifications (you have 3 rings to close each day of which you can choose your personal goals for – I absolutely love this as it keeps me motivated all day every day) and to use during all of my different workouts has been an absolute fitness journey changer. I’m really looking forward to looking back over my data over longer periods of time, not just on a daily ‘you made it’ basis, but to see how I progress on a deeper level, and the Apple Watch can do that for me.

    I also love how it gives you little versions of ‘tech pep talks’ when it comes to your goals, like ‘Keep it going today’, ‘Off to a great start’, and my most favourite.. ‘Make it happen today’.

  2. Notifications (texts/calls/emails) – I absolutely love getting my texts, calls and email notifications on my watch. I thought before I owned one that this would really annoy me, but when I am pottering around the house, on the go or at work, it’s been a huge convenience for me not having to have my phone with me at all times.
    The benefits of cellular, which is what I have, are that I don’t have to take my phone with me, anywhere. As long as your phone is on wherever you’ve left it for network connection purposes (as they run under the same phone number), I can leave the house for example, on a walk with just my watch and know that I can be contacted or contact someone if need be, or, if you are going for a run you can even play music without taking your phone as well. This is not one of those necessary features of course to enjoy an Apple Watch, but as I said earlier, by choice I went all in with this purchase and cellular at the end of the day for me personally, really does align with my lifestyle.
  3. Music – One of the features I was most looking forward to, was not having to continually reach for my phone when I was listening to music just to skip a song. I catch public transport regularly, and when I am holding my handbag, my lunch bag, and of a morning – my coffee, the last thing I want to be doing is to try to hold my phone as well just so I can change my music.
    I am also able to pause the song from my watch and change the volume. This feature goes for listening to podcasts too, of which I tend to want to pause regularly when I am listening to them so I don’t miss anything if I am interrupted. I have quality wireless headphones as well (Bose) which are by far one of my favourite tech accessories I own, and this feature for me makes my wireless headphones even better (which I didn’t think was possible – but the experience of using my Bose now is definitely better).
  4. Personalise – This is a feature that all Apple Watch’s have, and I really, really dig it. Not only can you personalise so many tech parts of the watch and what it can do, you can change your band to suit you, your personality and your outfit. There are so many bands already out there and new ones continually being released.
    This is one of the simplest features, but seriously one of my favourites. It really is great when you can go from your gym workout with your durable sports band onto work or out to dinner with your beautiful leather band just from a little release and snap. So far I have the one this version came with, the Soft White sport band, and then I made the extra investment in the Saddle Brown Classic Buckle leather band as I’ve always loved my leather band watches.
  5. Anxiety – This by far for me was one of the biggest pro’s of the Apple Watch that has blown me away, a pro I had no idea was a pro of having one, until I did. I suffer from anxiety daily, and I didn’t realise the affect having (or wanting) to continually check my phone had on triggering my anxiety. Since having my Apple Watch I rarely ever check my phone, it’s completely stopped that regular urge to do it every time I have down time,  it’s stopped that “has someone tried to contact me?”, or do I dare say.. ‘FOMO’ feeling almost immediately.
    Owning an Apple Watch has revolutionised my anxiety around checking my phone. I wish I knew it would have had this profound affect on my mental health as I would have invested in one sooner. It’s literally changed my entire outlook on tech and how it can actually benefit your emotional wellbeing within your day to day, not make it worse.

Con’s

  1. Learn – It does take a little while to get your head around all of the features of the watch, to be honest I am still learning what it is capable of, though this can be a little draining to some, after a few Google searches and YouTube video’s, you can definitely turn this con around, and if you are already an Apple lover like myself, it won’t take you long at all to get use to it.
    I purchased mine the day before my first personal training session this year, which was one of the specific reasons I wanted it in the first place, and by my PT session in the morning I still hadn’t worked out the fitness tracking yet, so I went rogue, but numerous sessions on and I am all over my fitness tracking and find using it for my workouts now a breeze.
  2. Charge – I thought it might have better battery power, but I do have to charge mine on a daily basis, well nearly every day, specifically the days I use it to track a workout and use it as the device to remotely control my music or maps. Again though, you can definitely turn this con around, such as if you charge your phone each night, it’s not that hard to charge your watch at the same time right beside it.
    I’ve heard you can get some really great dual chargers which can charge your phone and your Apple Watch at the same time on what looks kind of like a ‘dock’, which is definitely something I might look at investing in in the future for less cords on the go on my bedside table.
  3. Music – At this stage the watch works the best with Apple Music, which is a shame if you are a dedicated Spotify user like me as the Spotify app isn’t Apple Watch compatible (yet), though I do have a lot of music on my Apple account from over the years before Spotify was a thing, so for me not all is lost.
    Depending on if the calibration gets better and Spotify make their app Apple Watch friendly or not, I might eventually end up switching to Apple Music in the long run. Time will tell (pun I just had to use in this blog post – for obvious reasons).
  4. Cost – Look, like anything Apple, Apple Watches are pricey (especially the version I bought), and I’m not going to pretend they aren’t for what they are at the end of the day. Perhaps they will come down in price eventually, perhaps they won’t before the next version is released.
    I will happily admit that owning one is definitely a luxury and not a necessity for your personal journey, but if you can work it into your budget, I guess the price being a con for you for a device like this, is entirely up to you.

Verdict

I would not trade my Apple Watch for anything, it has really opened my eyes to how beneficial being close to your tech can be. Before I owned an Apple Watch I use to think that it would really affect me in the sense of being too switched on all the time and not being able to ‘log off’ because you always had your watch on, but it has been the total opposite experience for me.

My Apple Watch has been and still is one of the best quality investments I have ever made for myself and my personal journey so far.

I hope you enjoyed my very first tech review on SPARKLE on darling. If you have an Apple Watch or invest in one in the future I would love to know your thoughts about it in the comments below. Make sure to subscribe to SPARKLE on darling back on the home page to ensure you don’t miss the next one.

All my love,