eXtensions - Friday 21 October 2016
Cassandra: Apple Watch Series 2 Launches in Thailand
By Graham K. Rogers
Functionality has been improved along with performance and their are added features for those who make use of the health and fitness applications on the Watch and the iPhone.
The original Watch used the S chip and the S2 now used in all versions has a dual core and enhanced GPU features, giving twice the speed for graphics. An early complaint had been the slowness, particularly when starting an app, but Apple feels they have dealt with this now. With some 18,000 apps now available for the Apple Watch, the device has far more possibilities.
WatchOS 3 has added to the new feature set, for example with the Dock (the idea was taken from MacOS). This uses the button that had accessed Friends: now found in MessageKit. Several other additions, like SOS. An emergency call is made from the Watch and the number will change if you move country. This also sends a message to 3 friends. A particular value could be for older people who may be subject to falls: the iPhone may not be in reach, but the watch is on the wrist.
As a way to reach out to more users and help them keep fit, a special function for wheelchair users is now available to make sure they stretch and move regularly. I am grateful for the reminders to stand and to breathe that are available to me. Cyclists and swimmers are also recognised and the activities apps can be set up to recognise these different types of exercise.
With 8GB memory the Watch can store local map data so users are able to ascertain their locations quicker than waiting for internet downloads. The route map available for workouts is colour-coded: green, red for slow pace and black dots when GPS is not available, such as when in a tunnel.
Apple has a neat trick connected to the water proof features. To work, speakers need air; but the holes let water in. So a user sets the scene with a settings change - this also makes sure water splashes are not recognised as taps on the screen - and when the immersion is over, a short sound burst clears the water from the speaker housing.
The Apple Watch Series 2
Graham K. Rogers teaches at the Faculty of Engineering, Mahidol University in Thailand. He wrote in the Bangkok Post, Database supplement on IT subjects. For the last seven years of Database he wrote a column on Apple and Macs. He is now continuing that in the Bangkok Post supplement, Life. He can be followed on Twitter (@extensions_th)
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