The 5 Stupid Tasks You’ll Actually Use Your Smart Watch For

April 15, 2015 Ben Myers

Apple watch

Getting our increasingly large phones out of our increasingly skinny jeans is a problem that has incapacitated the planet and reduced productivity by 89%. Luckily, smart watches are here to take notifications from out of our pockets and on to our wrists.

With my phone in my pocket, I use a complex mental formula to determine whether each alert might be worth the effort of undoing my belt to fit my hand in my right front pocket. (I joke… but seriously.)

Android and Apple watches might have a long list of features, but they primarily exist to address the fact that phone users get a hundred notifications a day, and some are more important than others.

“Quickly texting back ‘okay’ is still the only way to make sure that a loved one knows that you cared enough to unlock your phone.”

With people refusing to call one another these days, you need to quickly check whether that message is a reminder about a meeting tomorrow (snooze) or a text from your roommate or significant other saying ‘HOUSE FIRE. PLZ CALL FIRE DEPT LOL. (helicopter emoji) (hospital emoji).

These days, most notifications don’t require a response. They just bring information to your attention. For most real tasks, you’re going to use your phone anyway. It’s still going to be in your hand or in front of your face 75% of the time anyway. So whether you get your hands on an Android watch today or wait and see what the Apple Watch has in store, the question remains: What are you actually going to use it for?

Android watches have been around a bit longer than the Apple Watch, but they have (arguably) many of the same features. Dx3 organized the android-developer conference AndroidTO for the past few years. Lucky us: we got to try out a few Android Wear watches.

Based on this experience, if you buy a smart watch, here are the five things you’ll actually use it for, other than generally being reminded that you’re wearing a watch that vibrates for some reason.

  1. Checking the time. The #1 use for your phone is coming to your wrist! You paid $200 – $500 for a piece of metal and plastic that is so painfully 2014-15 that you might go back to wearing a regular watch in 6 months just for fashion’s sake.

  2. Conversation piece. Have your one-sentence explanation down pat because you’re going to be repeating it a lot. Incisive questions include “Is that an Apple Watch?” and “Why did you buy it?”

  3. Quickly texting back ‘okay’. Read receipts are great but quickly texting back ‘okay’ is still the only way to make sure that a loved one knows that you cared enough to unlock your phone. Smart watches make it easy with just a few taps. So… meet you at Jamba Juice in 15?

  4. Controlling and identifying music (ie: skipping songs). You’ve got your phone in your pocket or purse and your headphones in your ears. In-line controls are, in my opinions, one of the best inventions of the mid-2000s but occasionally something will pop into your ears and you’ll have no idea what it is. What? Oh yeah. Kanye West did an all-autotune album. AND IT’S AMAZING.

  5. Being told how much you walk whether that’s something you care about or not – 3,400 steps so far today… Huh. Hey Siri… how do I turn this off?

Are you excited to begin wearing a redundant watch again? Leave a comment!

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