Home  »  Mobile News   »   Apple Watch Series 8 Review in progress: My Thoughts After Wearing It for a Week So far, it's hard to tell how the Apple Watch Series 8 compares with the Apple Watch Ultra — or upcoming competitors. But I decided against testing the car-crash feature, for obvious reasons.

Apple Watch Series 8 Review in progress: My Thoughts After Wearing It for a Week So far, it's hard to tell how the Apple Watch Series 8 compares with the Apple Watch Ultra — or upcoming competitors. But I decided against testing the car-crash feature, for obvious reasons.

By Orbit Brain

16
Apple Watch Series 8 Review in progress: My Thoughts After Wearing It for a Week So far, it's hard to tell how the Apple Watch Series 8 compares with the Apple Watch Ultra — or upcoming competitors. But I decided against testing the car-crash feature, for obvious reasons.

Apple Watch Series 8 Review in progress: My Thoughts After Wearing It for a Week So far, it's hard to tell how the Apple Watch Series 8 compares with the Apple Watch Ultra — or upcoming competitors. But I decided against testing the car-crash feature, for obvious reasons.

This story is a part of Focal Level iPhone 2022, CNET’s assortment of stories, suggestions and recommendation round Apple’s hottest product.

The Apple Watch Sequence 8, beginning at $399 (£419, AU$629), joins the temperature sensing wearable pack with a brand new temperature sensor of its personal. Temperature-sensing wearables have been a pattern these previous few years, from the Fitbit Sense to the Oura Ring, Amazon’s Halo band and Samsung’s Galaxy Watch 5. A number of weeks in the past, I bought sick and a little ring on my finger let me know my temperature was elevated. So, in my expertise temperature studying is not simply one other check-the-box function. 

Additionally, this is not the one new Apple Watch, although. The lower-cost Apple Watch SE and dearer Apple Watch Extremely make a broad vary, going from $249 as much as $799 and past. 

This yr, with three new Apple Watches, the problem is figuring out which one to get — if any.

After carrying Apple’s newest watch on my wrist for lower than per week, it is laborious to inform. The Sequence Eight appears to be like equivalent to final yr’s Apple Watch Sequence 7 and has a lot of the similar options. New to the Eight is its temperature sensor, together with improved gyroscope and accelerometer movement sensors that are actually in a position to detect automobile crashes and make SOS calls within the occasion of an emergency.

I did not take a look at the car-crash function, for apparent causes. And, as of the time of this text publishing, I’ve solely simply had my nightly temperature information begin to seem. Each options might very nicely find yourself being helpful over time, however how helpful stays to be seen.

The very best a part of the Apple Watch this yr is its software program enhancements. WatchOS 9 provides quite a few extras which might be actually nice: a compass app that now tracks your steps by way of GPS that will help you navigate again house throughout hikes, remedy monitoring, multistage sleep monitoring and a low-power mode that shuts down some capabilities to increase battery life. However you do not want a brand new look ahead to these; a free replace to WatchOS 9 might offer you these upgrades and make you are feeling like you have already got a brand new watch.

Apple’s method to bettering its watch over time has been a gentle accumulation of upgrades — an always-on show one yr, blood oxygen the following, a barely bigger show and now temperature sensing. Skipping a bunch of years between upgrades can find yourself including plenty of new options in a single huge bunch, however anybody who has a Sequence 7 may have a tough time justifying the acquisition.

Temperature sensing

Apple’s temperature sensor measures pores and skin temperature, much like how different wearables work. It additionally measures air or water temperature (water temperature readings can present up in some apps that use the sensor). The sensor appears to be like at relative temperature change, displaying relative will increase or decreases in levels, however not an absolute temperature like a thermometer. 

The measurements are collected at evening whereas sleeping, and it takes 5 days for the watch to gather sufficient information to ascertain a beginning baseline. (In line with Apple, the baseline temperature will hold calibrating over time.) From that time on, the measurements solely present up in Apple’s Well being App on the iPhone, beneath Pores and skin Temperature. I might examine the chart and see what my temperature modifications have been, however Apple’s not presently alerting wearers of modifications on their wrist, or every other method. The measurements additionally aren’t getting used for any type of Readiness or Wellness rating, like corporations equivalent to Fitbit and Oura are already doing. Apple is probably going going to spend the following yr, at the least, attempting to determine learn how to floor that information extra. Within the meantime, perhaps you need to wait earlier than deciding if the sensor performs into the worth of the watch.

Another instantly helpful space for temperature-sensing information is ovulation monitoring, one other new watch function. Just like how Fitbit and Oura already work, the temperature shifts are used to trace fertility cycles, in addition to attainable interruptions. CNET will take a look at this over the following few months, a lot as we now have with different trackers. And a phrase about privateness for one of these information: Apple says its Well being information stays encrypted on the person’s account and in iCloud, and if two-factor authentication is turned on, nobody else can entry it.

Automotive-crash detection

Apple’s improved movement sensors on the Watch Eight are being put to make use of for crash detection, which the iPhone (and different units) can already do in some situations. Very similar to Apple’s fall detection function on its watches, it is doubtlessly a life-saving function if it might sense a crash and make an emergency name whereas somebody is debilitated. Sadly, figuring out how dependable this function may be is one thing we simply cannot decide but. I really like the thought of watches as safety-monitoring instruments, although, however Apple additionally consists of car-crash detection on the cheaper Apple Watch SE.

On a facet observe, I am curious what else the extra correct gyroscope and accelerometer may very well be used for. Would these sensors be capable to extra precisely monitor different physique actions or actions over time when new algorithms are refined? Or might they be used to enhance gesture monitoring? Or, as Apple approaches the discharge of its anticipated AR/VR headset, would improved movement controls be a doorway to controls for blended actuality? I am heading down a street of pure hypothesis, however I might be shocked if car-crash detection was all they have been able to.

Battery life

One huge lacking piece to the midrange Apple Watch is its battery. There may be an Apple Watch that may final an estimated 36 hours or extra on a cost, however that watch prices $799. The Apple Watch Extremely is huge and rugged, and we have not even reviewed it but.

With sleep monitoring now a full-featured a part of WatchOS and temperature monitoring needing an evening’s sleep to measure, the Apple Watch is now designed to be worn to mattress. That is an issue when the Apple Watch’s battery life remains to be solely a few day and a half. The watch fees up absolutely in about an hour and a half, or as much as 80% in 45 minutes or so, however when will you cost it? Earlier than mattress? Within the morning whereas showering? At your desk?

I wore the Sequence Eight to mattress one evening after being absolutely charged, wore it the entire subsequent day, to mattress once more, and it was at 34% battery the following morning. You might make it by a day or extra with out charging, however for the reason that Apple Watch has its personal proprietary charger, you may need to be sure to’re not caught someplace with it working low.

I are usually a charge-at-night individual, or with longer-battery wearables just like the Oura Ring or the Fitbit Sense, I put on them for days earlier than needing to fret. It feels just like the Apple Watch Sequence Eight is caught within the center proper now. That low-power mode will not assist, both, as a result of it turns off temperature monitoring and coronary heart fee with a purpose to get these longer-life battery positive aspects. Perhaps you might flip backwards and forwards between modes, maybe? Nonetheless, I might place “larger battery” on the prime of my Apple Watch Sequence 9 want checklist.

I have not lived with low-power mode a lot this previous week, since I used to be busy monitoring temperature information — however I am curious to see the way it impacts battery life over the following few weeks.

Apple Watch Sequence Eight vs. SE and Extremely: Or do you improve in any respect?

The Apple Watch Extremely has a extra sturdy design, longer battery and higher water resistance. Is it the higher selection? The SE, which lacks blood oxygen, ECG, an always-on show and temperature sensing, is perhaps a great choose for somebody who would not want as a lot (however the lack of an always-on show is not superb). And can temperature monitoring really feel helpful over time, together with ovulation monitoring?

There’s little cause to improve to the Sequence Eight when you have a Sequence 7, or perhaps a Sequence 6. However, the Apple Watch Sequence Eight is probably the most full well being watch in Apple’s lineup that does not want an improve to the Extremely.

The excellent news about Apple’s new and improved watch lineup is the processors ought to all be equally quick, however the design and options scale up. Shopping for final yr’s Sequence 7 if it is on sale is a wonderful various, however the 8’s greatest draw over the SE proper now’s its always-on show, barely larger display and its further ECG, blood oxygen and temperature sensors.

Examine again right here in a month or two, and we’ll reply this extra clearly. For now, the Apple Watch Sequence Eight stays a superb piece of watch {hardware} with improved software program and a well being sensor that may very well be an element down the street. However first, examine your wrist: You might have already got an Apple Watch that is ok.


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