Some quick thoughts about using cellular on Apple Watch for the last week


  1. Fun to just drop iPhone on the Qi-charger at my desk and go about my business, confident that anyone can get ahold of me if needed. Odd feeling of being untethered but not out of contact.
  2. Keeping AirPods in my pocket increases this confidence that I can listen to music, podcasts and take calls if necessary. This really says more about the ubiquity of AirPods usefulness, but the AirPods/Apple Watch combo is an absolute slam-dunk.
  3. Sounds dorky, but leaving my iPhone behind and knowing I can be reached if necessary was an oddly freeing, yet at the same time, unnerving experience. I am so conditioned to check my pocket to make sure my iPhone is there, I panicked the first couple times I unconsciously checked and it wasn’t there, causing a momentary “Where’s my phone?!” response. This subsided after a couple days.
  4. Because my iPhone wasn’t constantly in my pocket, I was forced to live more “in the moment” because I didn’t have the ability to take it out and start surfing the web. I didn’t start fiddling with the watch either, it was like having blinders taken off in a sense to what was going on around me.


  1. Cellular signal not as robust as the iPhone, but to be expected (I’m using a Series 3). Series 4 signal capture should be better because the bottom casing is now ceramic and sapphire crystal
  2. Battery drains much more quickly when not attached to iPhone, particularly if local cellular signal is low/weak, amount of battery available needs to be considered before going iPhone-free, like before workouts, especially if you plan to listen to music via bluetooth.
  3. It can sometimes take the Watch a minute or two to switch over to cellular and acquire a signal, sometimes requiring me to toggle the Cellular On/Off setting on the Watch in order to get cellular to engage.

Overall, I’m sure I’m experiencing a bit of “new toy” bias, so we will see if cellular is something that I continue to use as time goes on, but for now it’s a nice feature to have.


I agree with everything @Aaron_Antcliff listed – both pros and cons. I frequently leave the phone behind, although I use it for conference calls rather than the watch to make sure I don’t have dropped signals, and it is easier to dial conference bridges and enter passcodes on the phone than on the watch. If I am listening to music and walk out the door and away from the house there is often a weird transition zone interrupting the music as as get about 60 feet away from the house.

Occasionally the WiFi to cellular transition does not occur on the watch and I have to reboot it a couple times a month.

But overall for a lot of the time the watch is all the phone I need – especially with music streaming improvements with WatchOS 5. And the watch v3 is a good speaker phone in the car.