The first reviews for the Apple Watch Series 3 are out and it seems as though the device has generally been well-received, although the LTE model may have a few issues.
The LTE model gives users a chance to leave their phone behind while out running or at the gym and this is what is selling it to most users. However, some people are reporting shorter battery life and connectivity issues. Several users of the LTE model reported how it attempts to connect to unknown wifi networks instead of using the cellular connection, making it lose voice and data capabilities. Apple have acknowledged the issue and promised a fix:
We have discovered that when Apple Watch Series 3 joins unauthenticated Wi-Fi networks without connectivity, it may at times prevent the watch from using cellular. We are investigating a fix for a future software release.
Nevertheless, here are (some of) the latest reviews from a number of reputable sources…
Apple Watch Series 3 finally lets you make phone calls without carrying your iPhone thanks to optional LTE, but calling is only a part of what cellular enables for the watch. Apple Watch Series 3 can be your dedicated tour guide on your wrist with Maps, your connection to friends and family with Messages, and your always-present personal assistant with Siri […]
I found myself giving Siri commands with more confidence and less awkwardness and frustration thanks to the new found responsiveness. (I only saw one ‘I’ll tap you when I’m ready’ message from Siri on Apple Watch Series 3, and it processed in a split second.) […]
Apple Watch Series 3 feels like a major leap forward from the original Apple Watch, and both cellular and the dramatically improved Siri experience enables new uses over Series 2. Apple Watch has shifted from its experimental infancy to securing its place as an extremely motivating fitness coach and a practical escape from always being plugged in.
The Good: Cellular connection works well for phone calls, email, Siri and messages. Music now syncs more easily. Improvements in fitness tracking and added watch faces. Adds barometer to GPS and swimproofing. Same overall size as last year’s watch.
The Bad: Battery life takes a major hit when making calls or during GPS workouts. 42mm cellular model is expensive, and that’s before monthly wireless service and Apple Music fees. Still requires an iPhone to set up and pair with.
The Bottom Line: The Apple Watch Series 3 is the best overall smartwatch you can buy, but battery limitations and add-on fees keep it from being a must-have upgrade.
With the addition of cellular networking in Series 3, Apple Watch gains something essential: independence. It’s not just a cool feature. It’s aimed smack dab in the middle of the two things people like best about Apple Watch: notifications and fitness. When are you separated from your iPhone? When you’re exercising. What do you miss most when you’re away from your phone? Messages and phone calls […]
Audio quality for phone calls on the watch is very good [and] Siri sounds great on the watch, too: crisp and clear […]
AT&T and Verizon are both charging $10 a month per watch. I don’t expect it to be free, but $120 a year feels like too much for a device that I’m using instead of the iPhone I’m already paying (a lot) for […]
I don’t get [the red dot]. It’s not that it looks bad in and of itself, but it draws unnecessary attention to itself. I would much prefer this watch if it were black. Also, red doesn’t go with everything, and a huge part of the fun of Apple Watch is swapping bands. Apple sells a lot of watch bands that clash with the red dot.
It’s the arrival of the latest model, Series 3, that suddenly makes the Apple Watch a real contender, I’d say […] It means, at last, that you can use your Watch to make calls, send texts, get directions in Maps, talk to Siri even if your iPhone is nowhere nearby […]
I found making calls was easy and that call quality was much better than I’d experienced on previous Watches where you are dependent on the strength of wireless connection between iPhone and Watch as well as iPhone signal strength […]
Furthermore, for now at least, the Apple Watch only works in the country you bought it in, there’s no roaming possible. This looks like it’s a technical issue – it’s certainly not something the carriers have introduced. And as such it may change in time. For now, though, don’t buy and Apple Watch overseas, even if it’s cheaper, unless you plan to use it there.
The LTE connectivity has changed the functions of the Watch hugely. Now, you can go running with your Watch, without your iPhone weighing you down, and when you’re done, make a phone call to hail a ride to get home. You can send a text, command Siri, navigate using Maps and more, all without your iPhone […]
Call quality has been consistently good – better than making calls before which relied on the strength of the connection to the iPhone nearby. There’s also the simple interface and the freedom of having my hands free which has made this a very good experience, even when I’ve felt self-conscious […]
The processor this time is lightning-fast. Apple claims a 70 per cent speed uptick compared to last year’s processor. Whatever the figures, this is a fast, responsive gadget […]
If you’ve been waiting for the right time to buy one, the addition of cellular connectivity means this may be the right moment.
Almost nobody will ever know you’re wearing the new one, unless they spot the little red button on the side. And yet, this is a completely different device. It now has LTE built in, and connects to the internet without needing your phone or even a Wi-Fi connection. For two years, the Watch was an iPod Touch. Now it’s an iPhone […]
The Apple Watch Series 3 is the first smartwatch I’ve ever used that felt like something more. Paired with a set of Bluetooth headphones (AirPods or otherwise), it becomes an awesome evolution of the iPod. Once you spend a few minutes culling your notifications, it’s a useful way to stay connected without being distracted. It hasn’t made me throw my phone out, but now I walk the dog and run out for coffee without it, because I can even pay from my wrist. I go to the gym without my phone, which means I actually work out now instead of just sitting on the bench staring at Twitter. The Watch finally does free me from my phone, at least sometimes.
That said, it’s still not a perfect device. The battery remains the biggest limitation, and the Watch still needs more and better apps, and a simpler interface. And, for the love of everything holy, Apple needs to make a Watch with a screen that’s always on. But whether you’re a hyper-connected hyper-marathoner, or just looking for a few minutes away from the attention-sucking din of your iPhone, this is the first Watch that really works.
The bottom line seems to be that, despite the hefty price tag, the latest Apple Watch is a great opportunity for independence from the iPhone. The audio quality is great and the speed of the device is good even without LTE but battery life will restrict the amount of calls you can make and users should be wary of connectivity until the bug is fixed.