“The latest trend in mobile devices is, of course, the rage for immersive screens, such as Apple’s iPhone X,” Tiernan Ray writes for Barron’s. “In an attempt to buck the trend, I spent the past month and a half using Apple’s smartwatch, the Apple Watch, on a daily basis, and I’ve spent the past two weeks using it exclusively, leaving my current iPhone at home.”

“I tested the Apple Watch “Series 3,” which went on sale in September, and which is the first to include its own cellular modem,” Ray writes. “I was able to send and receive phone calls, thanks to number forwarding from the iPhone via AT&T’s ‘Number Sync.’ Other carriers make possible the same capability. I used the wireless AirPod headphones to hear the sound from the watch.”

“The watch has battery life of as much as 48 hours when used with the phone, which is a substantial improvement, in my experience, from the previous two models. It means you can go on a long overseas flight and not worry that the battery will be gone when you land,” Ray writes. “But used on its own, it was a different story. Calls of even a few minute could cause the battery level to drop by 10%. And without the phone nearby, the watch kept contacting the network for texts and emails and alerts. The result is that most days, after starting in the morning with a full charge, the battery would be down to ten percent late in the evening, or would empty completely.”

Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular). The freedom to go with just your Apple Watch.

Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular). The freedom to go with just your Apple Watch.

“Other than those two issues, the functionality was mostly very good. The watch became my window into email and texts, without having to carry around a phone. I was able to listen to playlists and streaming music from Apple Music… If I wanted to read documents or do anything more ambitious, I used my iPad Mini, which I carry with me almost all the time,” Ray writes. “My verdict is it’s a fine update to the Apple Watch, and a good start with cellular. Until battery life and connectivity are improved, however, it’s not yet something that can replace the smartphone as the full-time communications device.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: An interesting test an a window into the future where we can imagine an Apple Watch, AirPods, and Apple Glasses easily replacing iPhone.

Even today, an Apple Watch Smart Band that provides additional battery life for Apple’s increasingly important wearable would be very welcome indeed!