Apple Watch wearers use their iPhones far less than those without Apple Watches

“A majority of the panel members were checking their notifications via the Apple Watch regularly, which by definition means they’re not looking for that information on their phone: ‘I realized I have come to COMPLETELY rely on my watch for all my Notifs/Glances. I don’t even know anymore how I would get by with only my phone,'” Bernard Desarnauts reports for TechCrunch. “‘With every text message, Facebook notification, email notification I get to decide whether it needs my attention without my phone.’ In fact, more than 90 percent of our panel said they use their iPhone less often now that they have Apple Watch: ‘EVERY time I don’t have to fish my phone out, I like my Apple Watch more.'”

“Actual numbers back this up. Over the last month, Wristly collaborated with Kevin Holesh, the creator of the Moment app that tracks iPhone usage,” Desarnauts reports. “Apple Watch owners open/pick up their iPhone at least 20 percent less than non-Apple Watch owners.”

“This quantifies the anecdotal reporting from our panel; wearing an Apple Watch helps reduce the number of notifications and interruptions from your iPhone, and helps users remain focused on what is happening in the moment,” Desarnauts reports. “And as more mainstream consumers start wearing Apple Watch, we can extrapolate that, over time, it will help users spend less time glued to their mobile screens.”

Much more in the full article – recommended – here.

MacDailyNews Take: So, here’s the data that backs up what we predicted would happen four months before Apple Watch even launched:

With iPhone, Apple changed the fabric of our everyday lives: All around the world today, you see people constantly pulling phones from pockets and staring at them. With Apple Watch, Apple will change behavior worldwide once again. A quick glance at your Watch and you’re off. No more smartphone zombies. Watch and see. — MacDailyNews, January 30, 2015

All phones are cumbersome to the same degree. They have to be pulled out, woken up, and poked at. Apple created… a world of iPhone/iPhone knockoff addicts. Apple will change the world again with Apple Watch, replacing iPhone zombies and iPhones on and under dining tables and everywhere else (you know, the stuff the older set complain about: “People nowadays, always looking at their gizmos, nobody can even have a conversation”) with quick glances of the wrist – like in the days of yore. — MacDailyNews, January 31, 2015

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Dan K.” for the heads up.]


  1. What’s the point of having a large iPhone screen if all your interactions are with your Apple Watch? Why not make a screen less iPhone that only works with your Apple Watch?

    1. OR … just put an LTE cell radio in the WATCH, eliminate the iPhone from the equation all together. Something tells me we’re heading that way – when the LTE radios get small enough.

      1. No, that won’t happen. Apple wants customers to buy an iPhone AND an Apple Watch. AND you would need to squeeze NOT ONLY the radio transmitter/receiver into an Apple Watch; you would ALSO need to add the computing power of iPhone (and the battery to power all that for at least one day). iPhone is the brains, Apple Watch is the interface.

        What will happen instead is for Apple Watch to retain its current role (as the interface to iPhone), but become thinner, lighter, and more elegant at performing that role, with longer battery life per charge.

        Also, the statement that Apple Watch wearers “use” their iPhones less is false. Those notifications are still coming through their iPhone. They are using their iPhone, but looking at its screen less often. Apple Watch is the interface for iPhone.

    2. Apple Watch can’t replace what your iPhone does. You won’t be reading books on your Watch, or playing most games, or composing long messages, or taking photos, etc. The Apple Watch is great for activity tracking and receiving notifications, it’ll augment the iPhone but never be a substitute for it.

    3. “Apple Watch owners open/pick up their iPhone at least 20 percent less than non-Apple Watch owners.”

      How did you extrapolate that to “all your interactions”?

  2. I was delighted when using Carplay in my 2015 Subaru Forester my Apple Watch let into the fray and gave me turn by turn instructions as well with haptic feedback along with the CarPlay auto display. It’s Apple, so, of course! These moments bring major smileage.

  3. And in other ‘news’ bears have be found to ……..

    But seriously, the iPhone link therefore needs a 4″ screen option and the direction of travel must be for a watch that can FaceTime/skype via the phone in your pocket

  4. I use my WATCH in Airplane mode 95% of the time. With watchOS 2 there’s rarely a need for communication with the iPhone nor the Internet.😀 Battery life is way longer by using Airplane mode most of the time.😄

  5. Now they should make the iPhone + bigger. It almost is big enough to replace the iPad mini. ALMOST. It’s way too big as a cell phone (fortunately that doesn’t matter for those of us who have the Apple Watch), but is just not quite big enough to be a decent phablet.

    And they should make the regular iPhone smaller for those who don’t have an Apple Watch and don’t have Wilt-Chamberlain hand spans–that or give us a homescreen option that changes the difficult-to-reach top row into an information/notifications row.

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