Tech Review: iPhone X and the Apple Watch 3 Series

Big changes to our favorite devices… how do they stack up to their predecessors, and how easy are they to use?Those who know me well will not be surprised that I have both the iPhone X and the Apple Watch 3 series… but they were surprised as to why.

Initially, I was opposed to the iPhone X. And I verbalize it as “X” versus “ten” because I want to 😉 I was not remotely interested in the facial recognition feature. I loved the fingerprint home button and how easy it was to use covertly. Quick glances down, while in meetings or traveling, was a great way to check something while not interrupting others. But the facial ID feature is just as easy, and just as covert. A quick glance down with a swipe up and I can do anything on the phone.

Speaking of that swipe up, I thought I’d miss the home button. It was a quick and easy way to get out of an app, close apps, etc. Now I’ve got to say that closing apps are a bigger pain (it takes far too many steps now… swipe and hold, long press, then get rid of an app), the overall use of the up-swipe to exit apps is easy and effortless. Even games have a built-in anti-accident bar so that you don’t close the game while battling Thanos in Marvel Future Fight.

I absolutely love the size. I’m addicted to the larger screen size, but missed the smaller footprint. The X has both… the screen size of a current Plus model, with a handset size of the regular one.

The animated emojis are far more fun than they should be. And your text-compatible friends will kinda hate you when you first get the phone and spam them with bunnies, cats, and unicorns. Another really fun app that’s only available with the X is Clips. I have barely used it, and don’t understand all of its features, but the initial fun I’ve had is amazing. Again, your friends might not appreciate the dozens of mini-videos you’ll send, but you will get a kick out of it. All of my videos, and emojis, have me giggling. They’re too much of a distraction not to enjoy their goofiness.

This puppy comes with not only one, but two fully glass surfaces. It’s been deemed the “most breakable” iPhone ever. So before you even buy this gorgeous creature, buy its case. And no, some thin-skinned “please don’t scratch me” case isn’t going to do if you’ve ever dropped your phone. I hate bulky cases, but I’ve had to suck-it-up and get something that actually protects this baby.

Lastly, if you haven’t already, consider the Apple Upgrade program… especially if you get a new phone yearly. It’s a free loan, meaning they don’t charge you interest. They do charge for Apple Care, so it’s an extra cost. For the iPhone X, that Apple Care might save you. I’ve never bought Apple Care before but considered it a needed “accessory” for the X.

What I love:

  • Smaller size for the same screen size
  • No home button (use gestures)
  • Facial ID (facial recognition)
  • Face ID based apps (a lot!)
  • Typical upgraded equipment stuff like the OLED screen and faster processor
  • The camera

What I don’t:

  • The notch and how app developers cannot hide it, so it’s obvious in all your apps, including games
  • It’s fragility

What I recommend you get with it:

What pairs nicely with your new iPhone? The Apple 3 series watch, with LTE. I’ve had Apple watches before, and have always loved the connectivity on my wrist. The LTE addition has been a godsend. Now I don’t have to take my phone everywhere in order to stay connected. True, it’s not nearly as fully-functional as the iPhone itself, but it can do everything I need it to when I want to be sans-phone.

Texts, scanning emails, and calls are the easiest and most productive use of the watch… well, other than knowing the time! I like the calendar reminders too. Uber and Maps are helpful while traveling. I don’t like having to charge a watch daily, but it’s the price of convenience.

Set up can be awkward, and any change to the phone can disrupt the LTE connectivity (this isn’t as simple as I’m making it… message me if you need further clarification)… so do ensure you have connectivity before you need it. Both Apple and your service provider, T-Mobile for me, are ready and willing to help ensure everything works well… but they each have very different areas of expertize. You need the plan set up and attached your phone. This is your service provider’s area. Turning it on or off, and how the watch itself works, is Apple’s area. Unfortunately, some issues may look to be one, and may be the other. Have patience if you’re trying to troubleshoot. Getting a new phone, restoring a phone, unpairing an old watch, etc, can cause a hiccup. Patience 😉

Swiping up gives you a general menu for state-of-service and some common functions. This is a great menu to become familiar with.

I’m still in-love with the silicone bands. They’re the most comfortable for long-term wear. I have a few other bands for “nights out” and such.

There are plenty of tech gadgets I like, but my phone and watch (and iPad) are the most used. I had to go two weeks without internet recently, and my iPhone kept me sane. Its large screen and unspeakable amount of apps, gave me plenty to do to keep my mind busy. I don’t think I could watch streaming videos via such a small device, and although I kept up on my gaming, I’d never purposefully play on a phone.  But in a pinch, it saved me!

So iPhone X and the Apple Watch 3 series are five-star devices. Have any great tips? Or sites that should be shared? Contact me and I’ll add your information.


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