Good things come to those who wait, especially with the Apple Watch Nike+. While it was announced back in September along with the Series 2 watch, it hit the market last week.
The pricing is the same as the other aluminum Series 2 watches – $369 for the 38mm version and $399 for the 42mm option. And the watch also sports the S2 dual-core chip, built-in GPS, and water resistance of up to 50 meters. But there are also a number of features geared toward athletes and more importantly runners.
A great band
The unique band is lightweight and very comfortable to wear.
One of the biggest exclusives is obvious – the unique bands. With the space gray watch, you can snag either a black/volt or black/cool gray band. If you’re looking for something with a lighter color, the regular aluminum watch can be purchased with either a silver/volt or silver/white band.
Based on the usual Sport Band, the Nike+ edition adds a number of perforated holes that are designed to improve ventilation and make it feel even lighter on your wrist.
After going on a few runs with the watch, I can definitely report that the band does live up to its billing. I can barely feel it on my wrist, and the holes do let air in and sweat exit.
Just to note, Apple has confirmed that the bands won’t be offered as standalone products. While there are a few replicas starting to appear on Amazon.com, if you want an Apple official mode, you’ll need to purchase the watch.
Two Nike watch faces
Thanks to the volt color, the digital face definitely stands out.
Watch users can also take advantage of two exclusive watch faces – Nike+ Digital and Nike+ Analog.
The digital version has become my favorite and features the time in a large font on the right side of the face. There are three small complications on the the left side along with a larger complication at the bottom. The top complication can’t be changed and will automatically launch the Nike+ Run Club app.
You can customize the style of the time with an outlined or filled hour and minutes. There are three different colors to select from the match the included bands – Volt, a lighter green/yellow, white, or a combination of white and volt.
The analog version can also be customized.
On the analog face, the time can be customized from simple dots all the way to a large 12/3/6/9 configuration. There is room for three different complications – one at the bottom and two on top. Unlike the digital face, the Nike+ Run Club complication is built into the analog face.
Thanks to the volt color and the brighter screen on the Series 2 watch, both faces are very easy to read, especially outside during the day.
As a nice touch, the great volt color can also be used in other non-Nike watch faces.
Special Siri commands
Along with special Siri commands, the watch offers great integration with the Nike+ Run Club app.
Speaking of Nike’s running app, its well designed and looks great on both the Apple Watch and iPhone. The easiest way to start the app is to select the complication. On the first screen you can quickly start a run, select a run for distance, duration, or speed, customize other settings, and even select a music playlist.
Swipe to the right and you can even schedule a run. You’ll receive a notification on the watch when it’s time to start. The last screen will show your number of runs and miles for the month.
Even if you want to leave your phone at home, the app does support the built-in GPS on all Series 2 watches.
And even Siri is getting in on the fun during every part of your run with the app. Using the virtual assistant on the Apple Watch, you can start a run with a number of different command including start a run/workout, a start a run of a certain length or minutes, and even an indoor or outdoor run.
During the run, a Siri command can pause and restart the workout. When you’re done, just tell Siri.
You can view the complete list of commands here.
Unfortunately, you can’t use those Siri commands on any other Apple Watch, but they are still available through the Run Club app on your iPhone.
The Apple Watch Nike+ is a winner.
If you’re still in the market for a Series 2 watch, it’s very difficult to go wrong with the Nike+ version.
The exclusive band is one of my all-time favorites and the additional watch faces are a great plus. Throw in integration with Nike’s run-centric app and budding social network, and you’ve got a winner.
At least for me, I’ve enjoyed my Nike+ watch so much that I’m seriously considering keeping it along with my space black stainless steel Series 2 version. I’m planning on using the stainless steel version for my day-to-day use while the Nike+ can be reserved for a run or other exercise.