Apple, Microsoft, Fitbit, Garmin… everyone wants us to be connected and measured by their device. Why would you want one? Why do I love them?
For those into exercise, the measurement of our workouts and even passive movement is often reason alone. I won’t take the time to justify or debate that here. The benefits seem pretty obvious. What about use outside of working out? Is adding a watch to your productivity arsenal worthwhile?
In my opinion, yes.
Life untethered. Life more present.
Let me explain…
Sad as this “true confession” may be, I used to walk around with my phone always in my pocket. Sure enough, if I put it down, I would miss an important call and so a round of phone tag would begin. The phone was an appendage of me. And, as it traveled with me, I would find myself glancing at it for any beeps, buzzes or blips. A lot. Often. And this can accidentally be very rude to those you are with.
I was asking another Apple Watch owner how he felt about it. He said exactly the same thing. Our experience is likely shared by many others.
So why is the Watch or Band any different than the phone in this regard?
All alerts come to the phone. Yes, they can be turned off. Yet you usually don’t want to do that for a variety of reasons. Many of us spend as much time (or more) on our phones than we do on our computers, so they are primary communication tools and we want to be informed up to the minute.
Enter the wrist…
You can “filter” your alerts on your Watch or Band. Now you have two levels of filter for your digital connected life… You can have just phone calls and text messages come to your Watch or Band. And maybe those important NHL updates. (Yes, I was born in Canada. It is in my blood.) All other alerts can go to the phone. So the simple act of putting down my phone and continuing to be connected by the Watch or Band lets me get the possibly important notifications while everything else is happily waiting for me when I choose to next pick up the phone. And I can easily see and respond to a text message without getting out of the flow of the current activity from the device on my wrist. Nice.
I feel you!
Haptic feedback is awesome. Having your wrist get “tapped” is a lot less intrusive to others than having your phone on vibrate or, worse yet, give audible notifications in a meeting. I can check on the reason for the tap when it is most convenient. And, because the “filter” is being applied via the wrist notifications that I allow, I am more likely to pay attention to the tap than the constant buzzing of the phone’s notifications which make it hard to distinguish between an app’s “breaking news” versus a more important personal text message.
The benefits of a new level of filtering and becoming more attentive to the present moment are unexpected yet welcomed advantages of adding another device to my digital life. I look forward to your thoughts and experiences here in the comments or on social media. If you don’t get an immediate response from me, it probably means I put my phone down. 😉