Reviews of the Apple Watch seemed mixed overall. Maybe even a bit more negative than is usual for an Apple release. Business Insider’s clickbait headline, “The Apple Watch reviews are (quietly) brutal,” is a prime example.
But hold on a sec.
Neil Cybart, a former Wall Streeter who writes the email newsletter AAPL Orchard, read (or watched) 21 Apple Watch reviews. His review of Apple Watch reviews is worth a read:
“To my surprise, when you actually read the reviews, and not just random quotes pulled from the pieces, most of them loved Apple Watch,” Cybart writes. “Out of 21 reviews, 14 were pretty much glowing recommendations while 3 were on the fence (more of a discussion about the device than a clear yes/no position), and 4 had more concerns than positives. Even if you took a look at the negative reviews, I wouldn’t necessarily say the tone was any different from other first generation Apple products that these sites published. Said another way, these publications were grading on a curve.”
He adds: “This was a first generation product with lots of ideas still in the labs and 60% of the reviews give pretty glowing recommendations.”
Of the reviews I read, the always reliable (and entertaining) David Pogue of Yahoo Tech wrote one of the most thoughtful. Instead of spending time explaining how things work on the watch, as some reviewers did, he weighed in one way or the other about how the watch performed in a variety of uses. I also like WSJ reviewer Joanna Stern’s review because she focused a lot on something I really care about: Apple Watch’s activity tracking.