Problems with the Air Quality Index on the Apple Watch in the UK

Last week, Dave Mark posted an article about Apple Maps and the air quality index on The Loop. I had chatted with Dave before he had published this, pointing out that the system used in the UK is different from that in the US. In the US, the scale used goes from 1 – 500, and the UK uses a scale from 1-10.

Here in the UK, I do see the current AQI on Apple Maps, with the appropriate number, and a color that gives a visual idea of where it is on the scale. As you can see here, the AQI is quite poor, because there is very high pollen (death to rapeseed!), and Maps shows that with an orange background.

Aqi maps

My Apple Watch, however, gives different information. It shows that the AQI is indeed 8, but if you look at the AQI complication, you can see that the little dot is down at the green end of the scale. When I tap the complication, it says that the AQI is Good, which is clearly wrong.

Aqi watch2     Aqi watch1

It seems that, while the weather app on the Apple Watch is getting the right number, it’s not using the appropriate scale. It thinks that this is the US scale, so no matter what the AQI is in the UK, this will show as Good, because it’s matching it to a scale that goes up to 500.

This is a minor problem of localization: the Apple Watch knows where I am, and should provide the correct information. But it’s a pretty dumb one, that is easy to fix.

The Most Lamentable Tragedie of Sirius Unresponsivus

Siri and I have never gotten along. Whether it’s asking Siri to play music, or using Siri to control Apple Maps, this gizmo has never been in any way useful to me. I do use Siri occasionally: to perform simple math calculations on my iPhone, when I want to add something to my shopping list, or, when I’m in the kitchen, and want to set a timer.

However, unless my iPhone is just a few feet away – and this is with a cellular Apple Watch Series 4, on the same wi-fi network, the usual response is this:

Siri

I wait for that tap, and it usually never comes.

Apple Sued Over Swollen Batteries in Apple Watches – MacRumors

New Jersey resident Gina Priano-Keyser has filed a proposed class action lawsuit against Apple this week in U.S. district court, accusing the company of fraudulent business practices and breach of warranty related to the Apple Watch, according to court documents accessed by MacRumors.

Priano-Keyser alleges that all Apple Watches up to and including Series 4 models are prone to a defect that results in the lithium-ion battery swelling and causing the screen to “crack, shatter, or detach from the body” of the watch “through no fault of the wearer, oftentimes only days or weeks after purchase.”

The plaintiff believes that Apple either knew or should have known that the Apple Watch models were defective before selling them, adding that they pose “a significant safety hazard to consumers” — a “number” of which have suffered “cuts and burns” as a result of the scratched, shattered, or detached screens.

Apple has acknowledged the possibility of swollen batteries in select Apple Watch models in the past, and offered free repairs up to three years after purchase. However, the complaint alleges that the company often attributes the issue to “accidental damage” and thus “refuses to cover repairs” under warranty.

Priano-Keyser states that she purchased an Apple Watch Series 3 in October 2017. In July 2018, while charging, she alleges that the screen “unexpectedly detached” from the watch’s body and cracked. Her daughter “pushed the screen back into place,” but the Apple Watch has been “unusable” ever since.

The plaintiff booked a Genius Bar appointment in August 2018, but upon inspection, she alleges that Apple denied to repair the Apple Watch free of charge under warranty and instead quoted her an out-of-warranty fee of $229 for service.

I follow an Apple Watch group on Facebook, and have long been surprised at how many people have this problem. Members of the group regularly post photos of their watches like this – see the MacRumors article for a photo – and many have said that Apple wouldn’t fix them. (Those with AppleCare are covered, if it’s within the two-year period.)

This is the kind of thing that looks rare, but when I see as many photos of this happening in a group with 17,000 members, it’s clearly not that rare.

Source: Apple Sued Over Swollen Batteries in Apple Watches – MacRumors

How to Sync, View, and Use Photos on the Apple Watch

With the arrival of the Series 4 Apple Watch, and its larger display, viewing photos on your wrist is a lot more interesting. You can sync photos from your iPhone to your watch; you can view them and show them to others using your wrist computer; and you can use them to create personalized watch faces. In this article, I’m going to tell you everything you can do with photos and the Apple Watch.

Read the rest of the article (and see the bonus cat photos) on The Mac Security Blog.

Apple Watch Series 4 Review: Bigger, Bolder, Better

It has been interesting following the Apple Watch over the last three and a half years. From a device that seemed like it was looking for a reason to exist, the Apple Watch has now become, as Tim Cook has said, the most personal device that Apple has ever made. With steady evolution through its iterations – adding such features as GPS and LTE – the Series 4 marks the first change in the form factor of the device.

Compared to last year’s model, the Series 4 is larger (from 38mm and 42mm the device has moved to 40mm and 44mm), and a tad thinner (.7mm). That tiny difference in size masks a huge difference in the size of the display. By shaving off the edges of the bezels around the screen, Apple has been able to increase the display sizes by 32% and 35% respectively for the 40mm and 44mm models. (Don’t worry if you have any existing bands: the 38mm bands will fit the 40mm watch and the 42mm bands fit the new 44mm model.)

Read the rest of the review on The Mac Security Blog.

Apple Watch: Hello New Faces, Goodbye Old Faces

With the Apple Watch Series 4, Apple has introduced two new information-rich faces that take advantage of the new device’s larger display. The Infograph and Infograph Modular faces offer lots of complications, in an attractive multi-color layout.

As Jason Snell wrote recently on Macworld, Apple Watch faces are a mess. None of the older faces have been updated for watchOS 5 and the new watches, and the new faces are missing some key complications, as I wrote last week. It really surprises me that you can’t add the Phone, Messages, or Home complications to the new faces. And I’m even more surprised that the old faces have been completely ignored.

One point that Jason makes, which I’ve been thinking about last year, is that the Explorer face is still the only one that shows your cellular connection, with a complication that shows from one to four dots.

Why not build that feature as a complication? Why not let other faces display that information? A year later, the Explorer face remains unchanged, and remains the only place you can view connection status on a watch face.

It seems important to have the possibility to see your signal strength if you have a cellular Apple Watch, and this omission is puzzling.

I’ve settled on the following three faces on my watch for now: two “analog” Infograph faces, and one Infograph Modular.

Face1 Face2 Face3

I would really like to use the Home complication on at least one of these faces, and I’m surprised that it’s not available. I’m also surprised by some of the complications that are offered, which are nothing more than eye candy. Here’s the Infograph Modular face with the Earth, Moon, and Solar complications at the bottom.

Face4

I think these are available simply as filler, since many people want to use all the complications inside the dial of the Infograph face. I don’t see how the Earth complication is very useful; I do understand that a moon phase complication is something found on many watches, but in a more stylized manner; and the Solar System complication is probably only useful for people on the International Space Station, and, perhaps, Elon Musk.

I’m also surprised that many popular third-party apps have not been updated for these new complications. For example, I use the Dark Sky app for weather, and it’s complication hasn’t been updated, even though the app itself has been updated since the release of watchOS 5. I don’t know what’s taking developers so long.

(I’m sure some of you will ask about some of the complications above, which are not in watchOS. The orange one on each of the faces is the Pedometer app, which is a step counter; and the one with the date on the face on the right above is Fantastical, the calendar app I use on all my devices.)