Watchscreen: Jay Torres, engineer & former Apple Retailer

Each week, I ask someone to share their watchscreen, examining how they’re using Apple Watch, what apps are useful, and tips or tricks they have. This week, I’ve asked Jay Torres (Twitter, Instagram) to share his screen.

Torres-head

Jay is an engineer by profession, formerly worked at an Apple Retail store, blogs about a wide variety of things at humblenerd.com, and is a craft beer connoisseur.

So, Jay, show us your watchscreen!

What watch/band combination(s) do you use and why?

al42sgwhitesportI have the Apple Watch Sport, 42mm Space Gray Aluminum. It came with a black band but I also purchased a white sport band. I love the way the gray aluminum contrasts with the white band. I wanted my watch to stand out and be different. I plan on getting a leather band for a more formal look.

How is Apple Watch fitting into your life?

I use my watch as a watch, obviously, and as a way to receive important notifications. I’ve worn watches and fitness trackers in the past so wearing a watch is not a huge change. The Watch is fitting well into my life as it provides useful functionality without providing too much of a distraction.

What watch faces & complications are you using and why?

Torres-screenshots

I use the Simple face the most, followed by the Modular face and then the X-Large face. I like the way the Simple face looks. It reminds me that I’m wearing a watch, first and foremost. I like the Modular face because it allows for the greatest number of complications. And I enjoy the X-Large face every once in awhile because it reminds me of an LCD clock, especially when I change the color to red.

The complication I use the most is the weather complication. Whenever I step out, I always need to know if it will be generally warm or cold. I no longer have to pull out my phone. This has saved me so much time. My only gripe is that it doesn’t update to your current location; it stays with your target city. I’m hoping watchOS 2 and 3rd party complications fix this.

[I have a feeling DarkSky will. Actually, this is configureable in the settings in the iPhone app, under Weather. HT @sbono14 for the tip!]

I have the timer because I’m constantly doing things that I need reminders for when they are finished, such as doing laundry, cooking food, etc. I have the time for sunrise/sunset because with a 7 year old, she always wants to play outside and knowing approximately what time the sun goes down is extremely helpful. And finally I have the date because that is always useful.

What Glances do you use and why?

I have, from left to right, Battery, Settings, ETA, Dark Sky, Now Playing, Clear, Fantastical and Heart Rate. I like ETA because it lets me know how much time I need to get to important places such as work, home and my step daughter’s school. I like Dark Sky because it lets me know the weather for my current location, something that the default complication doesn’t allow. But to be honest, those are the two I use the most.

What notifications do you receive on Apple Watch and why?

I receive notifications for text messages and IFTTT. Receiving text messages on my Watch are a game changer. I now always have my phone on silent and rely on my Watch to let me know of any texts. It’s subtle so it doesn’t interrupt anything, and the haptic touch is strong enough to let me know someone has texted me.

I have a few things in IFTTT that I like to get notified of, such as when our WeMo Switch gets activated, so I know when my wife is home. I also receive notifications from Tweetbot, Snapchat and Instagram.

How are you using Apple Watch’s health and fitness features?

I’m not using them as much as I would like. I used to be religious about going to the gym . With a two month old, all of my free time has disappeared. My Move and Standing rings are almost always filled but my Excercise ring leaves much to be desired. Once we adjust to our new one, I will fit a workout routine into my schedule and look forward to using the Watch more.

[I recommend this–it was life-changing for my wife and I with our newborn]

How are you using Apple Watch’s communication features?

I use the communication features a lot with my wife. I will send her my heartbeat randomly and sketches when I’m bored at work. I have a few friends I send inappropriate sketches to. They usually respond by sending me their heartbeat.

How do you organize your apps and why?

Torres-apps2

I don’t have a system for orgainzing my apps other than keeping the apps I launch the most close to the center watch app.

What Apple Watch apps are you using most and why?

I use Messages the most by far. I communicate with my wife mostly through text and receiving notifications on my wrist assures I never miss a text from her. I also use Swarm a lot to check into places. I use the Do Button to turn on/off our living room lamp which is connected to a WeMo Switch. I also use the Remote app because we can never find the Apple TV remote. I use Clear while I’m grocery shopping because it’s much more convenient to tap my Watch instead of taking my phone out of my pocket each time I cross an item off my list.

[Other interested apps on Jay’s watchscreen not mentioned are: Twitterrific, Workflow automator, Overcast podcast, Deliveries package tracking, 1Password manager, Spark email, & Stocard rewards cards]

What apps do you think best leverage the uniqueness of Apple Watch? Why?

I think Apple Pay best leverages the uniqeness of Apple Watch. Reducing the friction to pay for things down to double pressing a button and raising your wrist is a game changer. If Apple is able to get more merchants on board, as well as converting all POS terminals, gas stations, vending machines, etc., we will one day look back at paying with cash and plastic as archaic.

What apps do you have that are unique or that others may not have heard of?

I use Authy for two factor authentication for logging into Google, Dropbox and other sites that support it. Instead of receiving a text with a four digit code, I open up the Authy app on my Watch. The all gives me a code to type in to authorize that it is indeed me who is trying to log in. It makes me feel like a secret agent everytime.

What are your thoughts about Apple Watch informed by your background as a former Apple Retailer?

I worked at an Apple Retail store in 2003-2004 (think iPod mini era) and back then, Apple was not the brand that it is today. People would come into the stores to learn more about iPods and maybe computers. Now, regular people know about the Watch. My coworkers who are far from Apple fans noticed it right away. Friends who are not early adopters bought the Watch on day one. It just shows how far Apple as a brand and company has come.

Anything else you’d like to share?

For anyone on the fence about the Apple Watch, think of it as a watch that does other things. If people frame it against an iPhone, they will be disappointed. We’re not quite there yet, but baby steps first.

Thanks Jay (TwitterInstagram)! If you enjoyed this, check out his blog.

Check back next week for another watchscreen or look now at previous watchscreens. You can subscribe to this site via RSSTumblr or by following MarkDMill on Twitter.

If you enjoyed this, you might also want to check out the weekly reviews of Apple Watch I’ve done:


Recommended App: Due

due2icon@2xIn this section, I recommend an app that I think belongs on anyone’s iPhone or Apple Watch. Today’s is Due, the best reminder app out there & one that has a great app for the Watch. For years I used Apple’s Reminders, but I wish I had gotten Due sooner because it is so much more powerful and customizable.

Read why I recommend it and check it out in the App Store today!

link-badge-appstore_2x

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