My Experience Using Apple Watch for 5 Years and Apple’s Gamification Strategies

In the year 2019, I bought myself an Apple iPhone 11 Pro 256GB and Apple Watch 5.

I use to use an Apple iPhone 5s with 16GB since 2016. But I was dissatisfied with the storage that it allowed me to use. Out of 16GB, 10GB was operating system 2GB was for Apps that were able to fit it 2GB was for Photos that I captured then I have to delete to make space for the next ones and 2GB was for other apps’ data.

It was total dissatisfaction with the Apple iPhone 5s.

In the year 2016, I was having sciatica. So I use to walk for 2 hours in the morning and 2 hours in the evening or night. I just completed walking 850 kilometres in a month to get rid of sciatica pain. I use to maintain my walking approx kilometre completed and days walk in week/month and a year. But I was out of sync with my blood pressure, heart rate, calories burned etc.

When Apple iPhone 11 Pro and Apple Watch 5 got released impressed with features like ECG, Fitness app, and Health app capabilities. And I choose 256 GB storage for my iPhone as that’s what I require to sustain all photographs, music, videos and other data for a year or two without deleting it.

I used Apple Watch daily for three years for tracking my outdoor walking exercises, ECG, Heart Rate Monitoring, Calory burning, Exercise hours tracking, Standup Hours tracking, receiving notifications, receiving a phone calls on my watch, reading SMS/Messages on my watch itself etc.

I was totally happy.

But one day I broke my Apple Watch’s Crown or Wheel. I was devastated. I contacted Apple Service Centre they said Apple Watch is unrepairable. And you are out of warranty too.

I tried walking and doing daily mundane tasks for a week or two. But I was out of luck and I was missing Apple Watch existence in my life if you want to say so. As I was using Apple Watch on my wrist for 22hrs a day. Only 2 hrs for charging was the time that I was not wrapping it around my wrist.

So in that two weeks UX (User Experience Designer) / User Interaction Designer / App Gamification/Engagement Strategist got awakened in my head.

Points that I jotted down on my notepad were something like this:

  1. Reminder: Apple Watch’s Constant use forced me to use it as an extension of my body something Steve Jobs claims in his early interviews. My empty wrist’s skin etches to remind me to check my watch but there was absolutely nothing then on my wrist. I have to take my iPhone out of my pocket to check the time. Even Apple iPhone has location data, Accelerometer, Gyroscope, Radios and all other sensory data but iPhone doesn’t have an exercise app. So I was bound to use Apple Watch to track my excises.
  2. Engagement: Receiving email, messages and other app notifications and calls on your wrist was the biggest advantage to the user and also the biggest disadvantage as it may disorient and distract the user from his task at hand at a given particular time. As I mentioned above I was using a watch for 22 hours a day on my wrist.
  3. Use: As we discussed above Reminders and Engagement will increase the amount of time users will spend on their watches. It will also increase the attachment of the user to the device. They both will be inseparable. And something like that happened to me and what I did was I bought the latest released Apple Watch 8 to replace my old Apple Watch. Even Syncing, Updating, Setting up, and Managing Apple Watch on the watch itself and Apple iPhone is very buttery. Even Apple Watch Backups to Apple iPhone are Automatic, Seamless and simple. So Apple has well-thought user interactions, system interactions, user interactions, hardware and software coupling beforehand that it is just ignorance to the user as the user doesn’t have to think about it. The user just uses the watch, and app as he/she wants without caring about system errors or bugs.

So now I am using Apple Watch 8 with updated faster more seamless features. And one feature that COVID-19 made us require the most was Oximeter.

So now I know why Apple is a successful 2 Trillion Dollar going to be 3 Trillion Dollar Modern Technology Company.

So you know what I am thinking If I want to be successful I have to keep in mind what I observe and wrote above for the next decade or so.

I hope you find my observations helpful.

Thanks & Regards
Mandar Apte

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