10 Cool Things to Do With Your Apple Watch

By Marc Saltzman

If you’re like most people, you won’t have time to go over everything Apple Watch has to offer. It’s estimated people only use about 10 percent of what their gadgets can do — until someone shows you what you’re missing. Check out these cool Apple Watch features.

Activity

The innovative Activity app and its three rings — for Move, Exercise, and Stand — does a stellar job of giving you an idea of your overall physical activity.

Press the Digital Crown button or lift your wrist and say “Hey, Siri, Activity”:

  • The reddish-pink Move ring shows how many calories you’ve burned by moving around during the day.

  • The lime-green Exercise ring is for minutes of brisk or intense activity you’ve completed that day.

  • The baby-blue Stand ring gives you a visual indication of how often you’ve stood up after sitting or reclining.

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Apple Pay

To buy something using Apple Pay on your Apple Watch, follow these steps:

  1. Double-tap the Side button on the Apple Watch, which brings up Apple Pay.

    It uses your default card in the Passbook app, but you can change it to something else if you like.

  2. Hold the watch up to the contactless terminal and you should hear a tone and feel a slight vibration — both of which confirm the payment has been made.

    That’s all there is to it. Apple Pay uses near field communication (NFC) technology inside of Apple Watch to make the digital handshake with the retailer’s contactless terminal.

Hotel key

Free apps like Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) let you tap your watch on your hotel door to gain entrance. If you’ve got the free app installed, tell someone at the check-in desk at a Sheraton, Westin, W Hotel, Meridien, St. Regis, Element, or Aloft. Keep in mind that support for Apple Watch likely won’t be available at all Starwood hotels and resorts or rolled out at the same time.

Glances

Swipe up from the bottom of the watch face to access your Glances. These are simple one-screen (nonscrollable) notifications that give you quick information.

Examples of Glances include:

  • Music

  • Heart Rate

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  • Battery

  • Activity

  • Calendar

  • Weather

  • Stocks

  • Map

  • World Clock

Music playback

Apple lets you sync some music to Apple Watch — up to 2 gigabytes or about 500 songs.

To sync music to your Apple Watch, follow these steps:

  1. Connect your Apple Watch to your PC or Mac via its USB charger.

  2. On your iPhone, open the Apple Watch app.

  3. Under My Watch, scroll down and tap Music, followed by Synced Playlist.

    Decide what you’ like to transfer over to your watch.

  4. Tap to select one of these options.

    Unplug the Apple Watch from the computer once the sync is complete.

Once you have songs stored on your Apple Watch, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Music app and press and hold the screen (Force Touch) to launch a couple options.

  2. Tap Device and then select Apple Watch instead of iPhone.

    You should be prompted to pair a Bluetooth-enabled headset or headphones to hear the music.

Maps

Because Apple Watch is always on your wrist, it’s a conveniently placed screen for getting directions. To use the Maps app on your Apple Watch, follow these steps:

  1. Press the Digital Crown button to go to the Home screen.

  2. Tap the Maps app.

    You can also raise your wrist and say “Hey, Siri, Maps.”

  3. Press and hold the screen and then speak an address or business name.

  4. Tap Start to begin the turn-by-turn directions.

Digital Touch

Apple Watch offers three unique watch-to-watch communication options — collectively referred to as Digital Touch:

  • Sketch

  • Tap

  • Heartbeat

To send a sketch with your Apple Watch, follow these steps:

  1. Press the Side button, which brings up your Friends ring.

  2. Twist the Digital Crown button to select someone.

  3. Tap that icon to send a Digital Touch.

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Siri

You can use Siri in two ways on Apple Watch:

  • Digital Crown: Press the Digital Crown button and wait to see the little bars jumping up and down near the bottom of your screen.

  • Voice activation: Raise your wrist and say “Hey, Siri,” followed by your command or question.

Siri can help you with virtually any task which are tied to various apps and online content:

Watches and watch faces

Apple Watch is available in two sizes (38 mm and 42 mm), three different materials (aluminum, stainless steel, and 18-karat gold), in multiple case colors, and with various band colors, materials, and styles to choose from.

The following is a quick summary of the three collections:

  • Apple Sport Watch: Ideal for those who want something light and durable, Apple Watch Sport is made from anodized aluminum and with sweat-resistant “fluoroelastomer” (synthesized rubber) in five sporty colors: white, black, blue, green, and pink.

  • Apple Watch: A bump up in price, Apple Watch comes in highly polished stainless steel or matted black stainless steel and with a variety of bands: leather, fluoroelastomer, Milanese loop, and link bracelet.

  • Apple Watch Edition: Available in rose or yellow 18-karat gold, Apple Watch Edition is more of a luxury timepiece. The retina display, which is protected by polished sapphire crystal, works with a number of unique straps and bands with 18-karat gold clasps, buckles, or pins.

You’ve got ten watch faces to choose from — all of which can be personalized to your liking:

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  • Astronomy

  • Chronograph

  • Color

  • Mickey Mouse

  • Modular

  • Motion

  • Simple

  • Solar

  • Utility

  • X-Large

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Gaming

It’s a huge understatement to say Apple Watch is an unproven video game platform. But given Apple’s track record with iOS devices — not to mention the passionate app development community eager to take advantage of this new real estate on the wrist — gaming might be the secret “killer app” of Apple Watch.

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