App developer statistics show increased Apple Watch Series 3 adoption, decline in older mo...

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in Apple Watch
Apple's latest Apple Watch Series 3 device has seen healthy adoption rates since its release last year, while usage rates of older Series 1 and first-generation models are on the decline, according to statistics shared by Pedometer++ developer David Smith.


Source: David Smith


Smith detailed metrics from his app in a blog post on Wednesday, demonstrating usage statistics of all Apple Watch models from August 2017 through to today.

Of note, Apple Watch Series 3 has enjoyed steady adoption rates since its launch in September, including a dramatic spike during the holiday gift-giving season. As of last week, Series 3 overtook the Series 2 to become the most popular Apple Watch model among Pedometer++ users, with the device accounting for 33 percent of Smith's active user base.

The most recent data shows Series 2 sitting at about 30 percent, first-generation Apple Watch at 24 percent and Series 1 holding steady at around 14 percent. As can be expected of a new release, Apple Watch Series 3 upgraders are eating into legacy model share, with Series 2 and first-gen devices exhibiting declines that began when the most recent Apple Watch iteration debuted.

Original Apple Watch devices, often referred to by the unofficial moniker "Series 0," has experienced the steepest drop off. In August of last year, usage of the first-gen wearable was roughly in line with that of its Series 2 successor, but rates have since fallen at more rapid pace.

While Smith fails to provide commentary on the precipitous decline in first-gen device usage, he does say that developing for the original Apple Watch is "slow and honestly a bit painful." On the other hand, Apple Watch Series 3 with its S3 chip and LTE connectivity is a "delight to work with," Smith says.

It is because of these troubles that Smith is keeping close tabs on Watch adoption. His hope is that Apple will abandon support for the first-gen device when it reveals watchOS 5, a next-generation operating system expected for unveiling at WWDC in June.

"The Series 1 & Series 2 watches would be a great baseline going forward," Smith writes. "While not quite so fast as the Series 3, they are a mile ahead of the Series 0."

In addition to overall adoption rates, Smith shared a few tidbits on user predilections, noting the split between 42mm and 38mm Watch versions stands at about 60/40. Further, the split between users with LTE and non-LTE Apple Watch Series 3 devices has been about even since Christmas.

While Pedometer++ users are only a small subsampling of Apple Watch owners, the analytics provides general insight into owner preference.

Whether Apple intends to deprecate first-gen Apple Watch models with watchOS 5 is unknown, but the company typically attempts to keep older hardware operational for as long as possible. Doing so allows owners to enjoy the latest features without upgrading on a yearly basis, fostering higher customer satisfaction and user experience ratings.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 15
    kevin keekevin kee Posts: 1,044member
    I am still using my Gen. 0. I bought stainless steel version and it's still as good as new.
    GeorgeBMacwatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 15
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,303member
    Perhaps upgrading explains the graph... 
     
  • Reply 3 of 15
    larryalarrya Posts: 548member
    “While Pedometer++ users are only a small subsampling of Apple Watch owners, the analytics provides general insight into owner preference. “

      Nope. The insight is only into people who think they need a pedometer app to count steps on a watch that already counts steps. So, maybe representative of “low information” users, which might bias the results in the direction of older models. 
    chasmrandominternetperson
  • Reply 4 of 15
    k2kwk2kw Posts: 1,756member
    I looked at the OLED screen on the iPhoneX and wasn’t that impressed but the screen on my Apple Watch is unbelievablely sharp and beautiful. And the Milanese Loop is incredible.   The first watch band that felt good on my wrist.
    chasm
  • Reply 5 of 15
    chasmchasm Posts: 1,597member
    While I'm well aware of the advantages I would gain in performance even from upgrading to a Series 1 from my "Series 0" Apple Watch -- I prefer the nickname "Watch OG" for mine -- never mind the Series 3, I have kept the Series 0 because I don't use many third-party apps, so it does what my current lifestyle calls for it to do. I keep up with the software updates and await the day when that no longer happens -- then I'll probably jump to either the 1 or the 3 depending on various arbitrary factors, like cash flow at the time. :)

    Kudo to Apple incidentally, for still supporting the Series 0 for just coming up on three years, with no apparent plans to discontinue support until the OS or tech in the newer versions requires an incompatible change. As a watch-hater prior to getting my original one, this level of support and compatibility (all the Apple bands still work with my watch, regular updates that improve performance, etc) is what is going to ensure I actually get an upgraded model when I'm ready to.
    edited March 2018 volganevariverequality72521randominternetpersonStrangeDays
  • Reply 6 of 15
    chasm said:
    While I'm well aware of the advantages I would gain in performance even from upgrading to a Series 1 from my "Series 0" Apple Watch -- I prefer the nickname "Watch OG" for mine -- never mind the Series 3, I have kept the Series 0 because I don't use many third-party apps, so it does what my current lifestyle calls for it to do. I keep up with the software updates and await the day when that no longer happens -- then I'll probably jump to either the 1 or the 3 depending on various arbitrary factors, like cash flow at the time. :)

    Kudo to Apple incidentally, for still supporting the Series 0 for just coming up on three years, with no apparent plans to discontinue support until the OS or tech in the newer versions requires an incompatible change. As a watch-hater prior to getting my original one, this level of support and compatibility (all the Apple bands still work with my watch, regular updates that improve performance, etc) is what is going to ensure I actually get an upgraded model when I'm ready to.
    Hi Chasm. Just wanted to compare Apple Watch Series 0 performance with you since you seem to be happy overall with it while I am honestly frustrated with my zero-gen watch after update to watchOS 4. For example, to open messages app it takes about 10 seconds to open, same with workout app. And generally, the screen even fades out (times out) before any app is loaded. So the experience is just awful. How is it for you?
    StrangeDays
  • Reply 7 of 15
    chasm said:
    While I'm well aware of the advantages I would gain in performance even from upgrading to a Series 1 from my "Series 0" Apple Watch -- I prefer the nickname "Watch OG" for mine -- never mind the Series 3, I have kept the Series 0 because I don't use many third-party apps, so it does what my current lifestyle calls for it to do. I keep up with the software updates and await the day when that no longer happens -- then I'll probably jump to either the 1 or the 3 depending on various arbitrary factors, like cash flow at the time. :)

    Kudo to Apple incidentally, for still supporting the Series 0 for just coming up on three years, with no apparent plans to discontinue support until the OS or tech in the newer versions requires an incompatible change. As a watch-hater prior to getting my original one, this level of support and compatibility (all the Apple bands still work with my watch, regular updates that improve performance, etc) is what is going to ensure I actually get an upgraded model when I'm ready to.
    That’s me in a nutshell. Good post. 
  • Reply 8 of 15
    xbitxbit Posts: 243member
    The battery on my 'Series 0' SS model is struggling a little. I'm unsure whether to get the battery replaced or buy a new model. I definitely couldn't live without it though!
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 15
    my series 0 just quit on me today. won’t charge and won’t turn on even after restart, reset or hard reset. it’s already out of warranty, but apple suggested i bring it to an authorized reseller here in the philippines which, unfortunately will just charge me for a replacement to the device which is nearly the cost of a new series 1. but i love this series 0 since it’s stainless steel and wish apple would just repair it even as just a watch, but alas, they’re mostly just telling me to give up and upgrade to a newer watch model. sigh. 
  • Reply 10 of 15
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 4,705member
    kevin kee said:
    I am still using my Gen. 0. I bought stainless steel version and it's still as good as new.
    The Apple Watch has multiple functions but mainly they are split between everyday stuff versus exercise tracking.

    The everyday functions of my Gen0 did very well even under OS4 with no discernible slow down, lag or problems.  But, exercise tracking was an entirely different matter:  starting an exercise routine got to be very slow and then checking stats while exercising had noticeable and irritating lag.

    So I suspect that much of the reporting here that Gen0 runs fine or Gen0 is horribly slow have to do with what functions the user is measuring.

    Plus:  my Gen0 failed twice inside of two years.   The last time it was replaced with a Series 1 which runs MUCH better.   I even see a difference in the everyday type functions -- which were pretty solid even on the Gen0.


  • Reply 11 of 15
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 4,705member

    While Smith fails to provide commentary on the precipitous decline in first-gen device usage, he does say that developing for the original Apple Watch is "slow and honestly a bit painful." On the other hand, Apple Watch Series 3 with its S3 chip and LTE connectivity is a "delight to work with," Smith says.

    I find this a VERY interesting comment.
    I have noted often that I found the lack of quality third party apps for the Apple Watch to be both irritating and puzzling.  

    Specifically, serious runners (a large part of those who use exercise trackers) mostly spurn the Apple Watch in favor of Garmins.  And, they have good reason:   The software on the Garmins runs circles around that available for the Apple Watch.   And, in addition, even the mid tier level apps mostly run on the iPhone and display on the Apple Watch rather than running natively on the watch.

    Technically developers were able to develop native apps for the watch but, for the most part, that didn't happen.   Perhaps this is the reason why:  "developing for the original Apple Watch is "slow and honestly a bit painful." "

    If that is the case, I am hoping that Apple then does drop support for the Gen0 if it will free up third party developers to develop native apps -- and that will become increasingly important for the Series 3 LTE which does not need to have a phone present anymore for any reason.
  • Reply 12 of 15
    kevin kee said:
    I am still using my Gen. 0. I bought stainless steel version and it's still as good as new.
    Same here.  The screen on mine fell off once, but luckily I had a month of AppleCare left so they gave me a new one.  That was over a year ago, and the replacement still works great.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 15
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 7,999member
    kevin kee said:
    I am still using my Gen. 0. I bought stainless steel version and it's still as good as new.
    I have the same and love it’s case, look, and build....But I can’t say it’s as good as the day i got it (day 1). It’s slooow. I got a sport 3 for christmas and wear that daily now, since everything is near instant. Especially Home scenes and Workouts. 

    My battery is also expired now, hardly gets thru the day. My 3 lasts a couple days. 
    edited March 2018 GeorgeBMacwatto_cobra
  • Reply 14 of 15
    canukstormcanukstorm Posts: 1,953member

    While Smith fails to provide commentary on the precipitous decline in first-gen device usage, he does say that developing for the original Apple Watch is "slow and honestly a bit painful." On the other hand, Apple Watch Series 3 with its S3 chip and LTE connectivity is a "delight to work with," Smith says.

    I find this a VERY interesting comment.
    I have noted often that I found the lack of quality third party apps for the Apple Watch to be both irritating and puzzling.  

    Specifically, serious runners (a large part of those who use exercise trackers) mostly spurn the Apple Watch in favor of Garmins.  And, they have good reason:   The software on the Garmins runs circles around that available for the Apple Watch.   And, in addition, even the mid tier level apps mostly run on the iPhone and display on the Apple Watch rather than running natively on the watch.

    Technically developers were able to develop native apps for the watch but, for the most part, that didn't happen.   Perhaps this is the reason why:  "developing for the original Apple Watch is "slow and honestly a bit painful." "

    If that is the case, I am hoping that Apple then does drop support for the Gen0 if it will free up third party developers to develop native apps -- and that will become increasingly important for the Series 3 LTE which does not need to have a phone present anymore for any reason.
    That's definitely one reason.  This is another:

    "Developing Apple Watch apps is extremely frustrating and limited for one big reason: unlike on iOS, Apple doesn’t give app developers access to the same watchOS frameworks that they use on Apple Watch."

    https://marco.org/2018/02/26/watchkit-baby-apps
    GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 15 of 15
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 4,705member

    While Smith fails to provide commentary on the precipitous decline in first-gen device usage, he does say that developing for the original Apple Watch is "slow and honestly a bit painful." On the other hand, Apple Watch Series 3 with its S3 chip and LTE connectivity is a "delight to work with," Smith says.

    I find this a VERY interesting comment.
    I have noted often that I found the lack of quality third party apps for the Apple Watch to be both irritating and puzzling.  

    Specifically, serious runners (a large part of those who use exercise trackers) mostly spurn the Apple Watch in favor of Garmins.  And, they have good reason:   The software on the Garmins runs circles around that available for the Apple Watch.   And, in addition, even the mid tier level apps mostly run on the iPhone and display on the Apple Watch rather than running natively on the watch.

    Technically developers were able to develop native apps for the watch but, for the most part, that didn't happen.   Perhaps this is the reason why:  "developing for the original Apple Watch is "slow and honestly a bit painful." "

    If that is the case, I am hoping that Apple then does drop support for the Gen0 if it will free up third party developers to develop native apps -- and that will become increasingly important for the Series 3 LTE which does not need to have a phone present anymore for any reason.
    That's definitely one reason.  This is another:

    "Developing Apple Watch apps is extremely frustrating and limited for one big reason: unlike on iOS, Apple doesn’t give app developers access to the same watchOS frameworks that they use on Apple Watch."

    https://marco.org/2018/02/26/watchkit-baby-apps
    Thanks...  That's both interesting and informative....
    But, while I do not doubt the truth in it, I also have to wonder how much is stemming from emotional frustration from not having full, unrestricted access to the internals.  That is:  I suspect what he says is true, but only only one side of the whole truth.  I would very much like to hear Apple's response to those accusations....

    But, that said, the fact remains that third party development on the Apple Watch remains limited.

    Could the two explanations be in fact just one?  That the reason Watchkit is so tied down is not due to negligence on Apple's part; but because they have to protect Apple Watch Gen0 owners from third party developers and apps who would cripple their device?
    ... Truly, without technical limitations, there is no advantage to Apple in artificially restricting 3rd party apps.  Apple is more likely to lose money than to make money with such a policy.
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