Richardson GMP

A Report from the Cutting Edge of Technology

By Brenda

I am not normally a gimmick joiner, but ever since I received my first iPhone for my 40th birthday five years ago, I now confess to being a shameless iPhile.

I hesitated to order an Apple Watch, though. As much as I strain against it, the kids do see my face turned towards the computer/iPhone/iPad more than I’d like. That’s just life in a busy family these days, and so much of that organizational screen time is unavoidable. 

But I said BUY NOW because:

  • I needed a new activity tracker and thought "why not get the latest tech?" with the heart rate monitor (not sure why, just because they do it now!). Fitbit/Garmin/Jawbone all cost about $250, so was the extra $200 worth going for? I decided yes, because the functionality for health is going to EXPLODE over the next short while, and I want to be a part of it. My husband is diabetic, and they are working very hard on developing ways to test for lows using these sensors. I want to be on the cutting edge of that tech.
  • I was hoping the "knocking" alarm could allow me to sleep in with my youngest son at night without fear that I would oversleep for work the next day. I have been testing the alarm set for 4:10am wake up and so far it's woken me up every time, without sound!
  • I needed a watch. Weak, I know, but it’s true!
  • I like to keep on top of technology, and I like my kids to think I am up on technology. As they get older, they will be less likely to think that they can sneak past me because I will have a firm base in what tech can do, and while I may not know "what the kids are doin' these days," I will have a basis to understand snippets when I hear them.

Two weeks into my Apple Watch World, I have found:


  • The alarm is great! Effective and subtle;
  • The notification “nudges” are helpful so that you don’t have to have your phone out all of the time. Do make sure you only have notifications on for things that you care a LOT about or you will get annoyed fast. That said, the gentle tap on the wrist does get my attention every time.
  • Siri works fabulously well--even better than on my phone. I can actually text via Siri from my watch with ease, which is the only way to reply to a text on the Apple Watch other than with emoticons or pre-programmed set responses;
  • The Activity Tracker takes a bit of getting used to, but I really like the quick glance to know how I’m doing on my daily goals. Once you have it set up correctly, I think it's pretty handy;
  • The battery lasts far longer than expected and charges faster than expected, about 90 minutes for a full charge (predictions had been upwards of 2.5 hours);
  • It feels tough; I actually don’t worry about banging it or getting it wet, and user reviews agree.


  • It is still at its core, another screen for the kids to want and to see me using;
  • You could be overwhelmed with notifications if you don't set them thoughtfully;
  • I am unsure how reliable or useful the heart rate monitoring is;
  • You do still have to have the phone nearby for most functions--I don't mind but don’t make the mistake of thinking that the watch stands alone;
  • You do have to raise your hand or tap the watch face to see the time—you can't just glance down at it subtly;
  • You do have to manage the recharge time—it will last all day, but not two days, so it’s another device to remember to charge (and the charger is unique). I have also found my phone drains battery power a bit faster, but not a lot faster.

Think of it at this point as almost a remote for your iPhone, and in that context, do you really want that? In an era when "unplugging" is becoming a life balance goal, perhaps it's not the greatest use of $450. That said, I have the sport version, in black, and it's very comfortable and easy to wear. I've worn it almost non-stop!




Dwight Jefferson, CIMA®
Senior Vice President
Portfolio Manager
Tel.: 604.640.0555 • Email

Tyler Steele, CFA
Senior Vice President
Portfolio Manager
Tel.: 604.640.0554 • Email

Paul Rietkerk, CIM, FMA
Associate Portfolio Manager
Tel.: 604.640.0562 • Email

Neil Kumar
Associate Investment Advisor
Tel.: 604.640.0406 • Email

Wendy Lloyd
Tel.: 604.640.0556 • Email

Jessica Dewey
Tel.: 604.640.0405 • Email

Brenda Geib, BA
Tel.: 604.640.0559 • Email

Richardson GMP Limited
500 – 550 Burrard Street
Vancouver, BC V6C 2B5

Toll Free: 1.866.640.0400
Fax: 604.640.0300

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The opinions expressed in this report are the opinions of the author and readers should not assume they reflect the opinions or recommendations of Richardson GMP Limited or its affiliates. Assumptions, opinions and estimates constitute the author's judgment as of the date of this material and are subject to change without notice. We do not warrant the completeness or accuracy of this material, and it should not be relied upon as such. Before acting on any recommendation, you should consider whether it is suitable for your particular circumstances and, if necessary, seek professional advice. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The comments contained herein are general in nature and are not intended to be, nor should be construed to be, legal or tax advice to any particular individual. Accordingly, individuals should consult their own legal or tax advisors for advice with respect to the tax consequences to them, having regard to their own particular circumstances. Insurance services are offered through Richardson GMP Insurance Services Limited in BC, AB, SK, MB, NWT, ON, QC, NS and PEI. Additional administrative support and policy management are provided by PPI Partners. Richardson GMP Limited is a member of Canadian Investor Protection Fund. Richardson is a trade-mark of James Richardson & Sons Limited. GMP is a registered trade-mark of GMP Securities L.P. Both used under license by Richardson GMP Limited.