“The first Apple Watch was a traditional first-gen Apple product: elegant in its design, but lacking key components; a more intuitive interface than a lot of its competitors had to offer, but glitchy and with slow-to-load apps,” Lauren Goode writes for The Verge. “But Apple is rich and influential enough that it can miss once and still get a do-over, something not every tech company gets. Apple can afford to iterate. And it has.”

“The Apple Watch is now both more and less of the things it was trying to be. The addition of GPS and better water resistance make it more of a fitness tracker,” Goode writes. “There are small differences in the new Watch’s appearance. The OLED display on the new Watch is brighter — in fact Apple says it’s the brightest display it has ever made. And if you look closely enough, you can see that the new Watch is just a tad thicker (0.9mm, to be exact). But again, it’s kind of like it just ate a big meal; you might be aware of it, but no one else will notice. Also, imagine that big meal was a bigger battery.”

Apple Watch Nike+

Apple Watch Nike+

 
“While the waterproofing is useful, the addition of GPS is a much bigger deal. It was easy to knock the first Apple Watch as a fitness device; I know because I often knocked it for this. A $349 sport watch without GPS was like an expensive sports car without turbo. Do you absolutely need it? No. But does it make the thing more legitimate? Yes,” Goode writes. “The Apple Watch is also part of a picture of modern tech — one that is slowly coming into focus, but might still be fuzzy for a lot of people. It’s a scene where the phone is basically a pocket computer that acts as the central processing hub, but our interactions occur through other things… There’s something effortlessly cool (and yes, expensive and even ridiculous) about having your phone ring across the room or in your bag, looking down and accepting the call on your wrist, and knowing the wire-free AirPods in your ears are going to pick up the call. We’re entering an era where technology hardware might eventually disappear into the background, as touch and voice and gesture become our more frequent interactions…”

Tons more in the full review – highly recommendedhere.

MacDailyNews Take: This is an excellent review with far too much information to excerpt here. If you’re in the market for your next Apple Watch, or your first, start with Goode’s review.

Here’s the thing: With the first Apple Watch units, our iPhones batteries magically gained some 20-30 percentage points of leftover battery per day because they stayed in our pockets more often. With Apple Watch Series 2, we expect our iPhones to gain even more battery life (perhaps enough to charge every other day) as they’ll be pulled from our pockets even less. (We have to wait until late October for our Apple watch Nike + units to arrive – ugh!)

Apple Watch Series 2 ticks off our four most important boxes, in order of importance: GPS, performance (significantly improved CPU and GPU), waterproofing, display brightness.

SEE ALSO:
Apple Watch Series 2: Apple refocuses its smartwatch – September 12, 2016