Apple WatchOS 2 Review and Test Report

What Apple Watch Should Have Had From Day 1

WatchOS 2 face with author's favorite photo of Iceland as background

WatchOS 2 face with author's favorite photo of Iceland as background

By Paul Riegler on 22 September 2015
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When the Apple Watch first came out in late April, I lusted after the ones other staffers at Frequent Business Traveler had and soon found myself the proud owner of one. Even though it was a first-generation product, it showed enough promise, and had enough functionality over other smartwatches I had used – including the Pebble and a few Android Wear models – that I had to have it once I read about what Apple would offer a few months hence in WatchOS 2.

The upgrade to WatchOS 2, which was delayed from last week after Apple discovered an undisclosed bug, became available in the Apple Watch app on my iPhone on Monday. The download took far longer than I had expected. I started it around 10 p.m. at which point it said that six hours remained and, by the time I went to sleep, two hours later, it showed that two hours remained and it was less than half downloaded.

The download required having the watch connected to the charging puck.


I awoke to find a message on the watch advising that Activation Lock had been enabled, which prevents anyone from using the watch if it’s lost or stolen, a key feature that had been missing from the original WatchOS.

The biggest change in WatchOS 2 is the addition of native apps. With the original WatchOS, third-party Apple Watch apps ran on the phone, slowing everything as information was exchanged between the two devices. This had the net result of making me – and most users – avoid using many apps except when absolutely necessary. With WatchOS 2, developers can design their apps to run on the watch itself, which will speed things considerably. They also can access the Digital Crown, the watch’s “taptic” feedback, and health tracking tools.

Click here to continue to Page 2Setting Up and Customizing WatchOS 2

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