As I round the final corners of releasing the Cloud Sync feature of Watch Kast I have been doing tons of testing with and without the subscription feature enabled. In that testing I have noticed that the traditional background transfer method has become quite good with recent updates to iOS and Watch OS.
First of all, if you are needing to get a large audio file (more than 100Mb) you are probably better off using a background transfer. Large files will take time to sync on the watch and with larger files you will run the danger of being timed out before the sync is complete. Not a big problem because syncing just picks up where it timed out downloading only the remaining portion of the file on the next run, but it is kind of a hassle. Also, synced files are going to exist in two places, doubling the size, for about 24 hours unless you delete the synced file from an iOS device. That may have you pushing the limits of storage on the Apple Watch, so in general big audio files are best served by background transfer.
For really fast background transfer times I have found the following formula works best.
- Phone connected to power.
- Phone outside Bluetooth range of watch and connected to WiFi
- Watch connected to power.
- Watch connected to common WiFi.
Also, and this is important, you have to actually use the app! The more you use the app, as with any app, the higher priority it will have in doing background tasks.
Using this method I am seeing transfer of 110Mb files in about 5 minutes. That’s pretty good.
You can download your own Watch Kast app at the link below.