Apple Watch or similar?

Hey everyone, so I’m a mechanical watch guy, typically rotate between a dozen or so mechanical Seikos, Orients, Sea-Gulls, etc. and have never cared for quartz, let alone a smart “watch”. However looking to take more control of my health and general fitness and the series 4 seems to have some new features which some people love. When riding I wear a HR Strap so not looking to wear the watch unless it would offer me benefits that my strap would not.

In your opinions as users of this tech, what are some compelling reasons to ditch my classy watches and to make an Apple Watch or similar (you suggest) my daily driver?


I had the original Apple Watch (“series 0”) and upgraded to series 4 when it came out. Love it. I’ve done some limited HR testing and its very accurate, just like DCRainmaker noted in his review.

My honest assessment is that while AW is a great smartwatch, I rarely use the health features. Unlike a Garmin Fenix or Forerunner 945 It doesn’t broadcast HR data, so AW doesn’t integrate with bike computer and requires separately recording (using watch app like Strava, maybe Cyclemeter?, or Apple Workout app). I’ve tested sleep tracking but hate wearing anything to bed so not using that.


I’ve found all wrist based heart rate sensors to be attrocious far out, especially when riding my bike, I’m a volent waker (type 1 diabetic and have morning syndrome where I release addrenaline and glucose into the blood) and always find that I have a lower heart rate during the day, than any of the smart watches I have had say (apple 2 * 4, Fitbit, Huewui 4G (which was gun as it was also a phone), and currently Fenix 5)

One thing I would say is that if you are a Garmin user, having all your fitness stuff in one place is nice, and is worth thinking about as part of the purchase

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I have an omega seamaster and an Apple Watch. I tend to wear my omega over my Apple Watch. I have been wearing a Whoop for about 8 months now, and absolutely love it. It’s a subtle band and I wear it on the opposite wrist of my watch. I’ve all but stopped wearing my Apple Watch during the week now that I wear my whoop.

If you still want to wear your watches, Whoop is a great option to track your fitness.

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A bit pricy though IMO, not saying its not worth it, but not convinced I need whatever it offers for $30 a month or whatever it is

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if you have a Garmin bike computer take a look at Fenix or Forerunner 945.

I have a Wahoo BOLT

I’m a tech guy, Apple guy AND mechanical watch guy.

Unless you have a specific use case in mind… you don’t need an Apple Watch.

Compared to a mechanical, the Apple Watch, as a daily driver sucks. An entry level Seiko mechanical will outclass it any day. Apple Watch is well designed and very well made… but it looks goofy to a watch guy.

The Apple Watch isn’t going to do anything for you on the bike that your head unit/power meter/HR strap doesn’t already do.

If you run or swim (in addition to riding)…a Garmin Forerunner 235 is a better choice in everyday.

If you just want activity tracking (step counting, etc) and you have an iPhone…your phone already does that (check Apple health, you’ll see). Or look at smart rings… Oura or Motiv… which you can wear WITH your mechanicals.

If you want more comprehensive general fitness tracking look at Whoop…with does recovery via HRV AND sleep tracking which will round out the analytics you get on the bike very well.

Apple Watch is a great product…but athletes are not the target. The software on it really has been fine tuned to get people moving… people are are not athletes and/or casual exercisers… which are not those people on this forum generally or a cyclist. This is even more the case since most 3rd party apps and the app ecosystem for the watch are going away. It tracks a lot of data but doesn’t play well with our training software ecosystems. Stava support on the Apple Watch has gotten worst and worst to the point its almost not even there anymore. Logging runs or swims using the onboard Apple software… is actually best in class experience and visually… but good luck getting that data into anything else without jumping through hoops and 3rd party apps on your phone to move the files.

Being able to make a call on your wrist is cute once and you’ll never do it again, the watch is not enough to leave the house without your phone (other than emergency needs) and battery life its till an issue. Notifications and alerts on your wrist are honestly annoying and you won’t use them after a few weeks.

(Full disclosure… I have owned every Apple Watch, currently have a Apple Watch 4… that I REALLY tried to make work for what I need and recently gave up on it and gave it to my wife to track her HIIT workouts… I run with a Garmin Forerunner 235 which is light years better for running… and stick to my beloved Seiko or Tissot mechanical for daily wear). My wife and I also both wear Motiv rings as our wedding rings… though I only use it for sleep tracking.)


It has really been optimized as a smart watch (love it), with some fitness features (its ok and getting better). Fitbit is still the best at getting people moving.

Save your money if you were thinking of going the Fitbit Ionic way.


I’ve had an apple watch and wear a garmin forerunner 935. If the reason you want it is health/fitness/activity tracking the forerunner or other watches are far superior at that. If it’s more about the other techy features in an apple watch, then I guess the answer is whether you are compelled by those features.

I like wearing my garmin daily because I get used to having certain information at a glance, I like tracking my waking heart rate, I like being able to see who’s calling and ignore it without pulling my phone out of my pocket, etc.

I don’t think any of these are necessarily all that compelling. The apple watch could do more, like send text messages (as opposed to just read them), answer calls, etc. After playing with them and having fun with the novelty of them, I just never used them.

:+1: The $100 Fitbit trackers are perfect if you need motivation to move. The Ionic is another story, it is a tracker trying to be a smart watch (and falls short).

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But if you are already invested in the Apple ecosystem…Apple Watch is better.

It’s the best-in-class smartwatch. by far… but that’s not saying a lot considering the value of smart watches.


I think you can be wearing nothing but speedos but still be well dressed with a classy watch!! I’m a Seamaster guy, but got an Apple Watch when it was off getting serviced. I now wear the Apple Watch most of the time. It now more of a sense of occasion when I put on the seamaster👌


as they say, beauty is in the eye of the beholder!

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I have a Series 2. It’s not, in my opinion, a sports watch - I use an FR230 to run, and an Edge 520 on the bike. It’s, as @bbarrera wrote, a pretty good smartwatch - which is fine if you want a smartwatch.

I have a couple of Tissot when I want the watch-wearer look, and my Apple when I don’t care how I look.

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If you’re considering one then I’d hold off until next month, they usually announce a new model in September at the same time as the new iPhone.

I’m surprised there’s so many in the thread who don’t rate it, I absolutely love mine but admitedly it’s more for the smart functionality (calendar, map directions, etc) rather than the fitness side of things. But full disclosure, I’ve never really been a ‘watch guy’, more of a tech nerd.

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I do fancy a Garmin 945. Seems to do everything I want at the moment.

I’ve had the Apple Watch and the Garmin Fenix 5. I prefer the Fenix from both the aesthetic and technical standpoint. That being said, my wife could never go a day without her Apple Watch, so like most things it will probably come down to preference and how you integrate the tech into your life.

I have and still use daily an original series 0 Apple Watch. Love it.

I owe a bit to this watch… I was in that “target market” of folks who didn’t get much exercise. The “close your rings” campaign, silly as it sounds, worked for me. I got off the couch and out walking. Which led to cycling. Which led to TR. And now here I am in the best shape of my life, eager for this recovery week to be over so I can get back to challenging workouts.

I agree with most others here: if you have an iPhone, AW is a great smart watch. But for anyone on this forum, you probably won’t use or get much benefit from its fitness features. And new models are likely coming in a month or two… waiting is a good idea.