The Only “Failure” of  Watch for Me So Far.

Having used the Apple Watch for a few months now, I love many things. In particular, I love how quickly and easily I can get messages and notifications and how easily I can send quick messages.

But I have one serious issue with the UX experience for sending messages, and it has bitten me in the butt a few times.

When you dictate a message, it typically starts converting voice to text in real-time. Then you tap done and it processes the voice further, then two buttons slide up, one to send the raw audio and one to send the now fully processed text. You tap one to send. However, if you do not tap either button at this point, and ignore the message, it will eventually disappear.

The problem is that by converting the voice into text in real-time, it implies to a user, like me, that the message is in a “sendable” state and “Done” means send. After pressing Done, the user might lower their wrist at this point, never actually sending the message to their wife, letting her know that the user, like me, will be at least 10 minutes late. But the user, like me, will think that his wife now knows that the user will be 10 minutes late and she should go ahead and do the time-sensitive thing without waiting for the user, like me. But the user’s wife will not know this. And that does not benefit anyone.

Contrast this with sending a dictated text from your phone. Even if you are in the middle of dictation mode, when you tap send, it sends whatever text is there immediately. There is no second step.

So, a reasonable way to handle this would be for the watch to tap me to alert me that I have not sent a “fully processed” message that is still sitting on the watch.


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