We’ve already seen how Apple Watch holds up in a gruesome kitchen torture test, so it’s no surprise to hear that the device also performed well during more scientific testing with Consumer Reports, which found it hard to scratch, and good with water.
During phase one of its testing, Consumer Reports looked at how susceptible Apple Watch’s display is to scratches, how well it holds up in 3 feet of water, and how accurate its heart rate monitor is.
Perhaps the most surprising test was the first one — the scratch test. It involved using a series of “picks” on an abrasion tester, each of which is harder than the one used before it. Of course, the harder the pick, the more likely it is to scratch the Apple Watch.
But surprisingly, the Apple Watch Sport with its Ion X glass didn’t scratch at all when Consumer Reports used picks that were as hard as a penknife and a steel nail. In fact, it didn’t pick up any damage until testers used a pick about as hard as a masonry drill bit.
As for the stainless steel Watch, which has a sapphire display, Consumer Reports was unable to scratch it at all with even their hardest pick, which is almost as hard as diamond.
In the water test, both Apple Watch models survived 30 minutes in a tank that simulates 3 feet of water pressure. They continued to work as normal when taken out, confirming previous reports that claimed the device is more water-resistant than we initially anticipated.
The final test for Apple Watch measured the accuracy of its heart rate monitor.
“We pitted the Apple Watch against our highest-rated heart rate monitor here at Consumer Reports,” says electronics editor Glenn Derene. “Wearing both, our testers hit the treadmill — first walking slowly, then a little faster, then a jog back to a walk.”
The test found there “were no significant differences” between Apple Watch and the dedicated heart rate monitor, with both reporting similar readings.
Consumer Reports still has more tests to carry out on Apple Watch — it says other tests take more time — but the device did incredibly well in the first round, which should be reassuring for all early adopters.