The Case for the Apple Smart Watch
I had a interesting conversation with a co-worker this past week following the announcement of Apple’s new smart watch. I often forget not everyone has my obsession with tech gadgets and needs to try out every new thing as they come out. Many people have asked me over the past week if I will be ordering the new watch, which one I am getting and why I would want it. Well we all know that I will be awake at 3am on April 10, waiting for the Apple Store to start taking pre-orders. But the other two questions take a little more explaining.
I have learned something from Apple as an early adopter of many of their products, the second generation is almost always a big step up from the first. I stood in line for the first iPad and then a year later for the second, wanted that camera. Retina MacBook Pros drastically improved in their second generation as did the AppleTV. I imagine the watch will be no different. The second generation will sure to be the “thinnest watch ever made” and probably be twice as powerful. While many people will wait for the second generation to begin with I will be online in the middle of the night to get my hands on the cheaper sport model. One thing very odd about this line of Apple products is the internals of each level seems to be the exact same. You buy a $399 watch or a $17,000 watch you get the exact same functionality. One may look a lot better but it will still do the same thing. As an early adopter who knows I will most likely purchase the second generation model I am opting for the lower end to start out.
The far more frequent question, especially from non-techies is why would you purchase a smartwatch. I currently don’t wear a watch and haven’t really since I had a smartphone. When I need to know the time I usually just pull my phone out of my pocket and there you go. It works but isn’t always convenient.
I am very excited about the possibilities of convenience and ease that an Apple watch can provide. I am a daily commuter, my trip consists of buses, metro trains and walking. I often have my headphones in or my Kindle in my hand throughout my commute. When I get a message on my phone it often involves juggling devices, bags and wires to get my phone out of my pocket. Enter the watch!
With an Apple Watch my phone will stay in my bag for the entire commute, it will rarely need to emerge to display information. If I get a message or a phone call I can quickly look at my wrist to see who it is from and determine what action needs to be taken. If it is a call I need to answer I can use my bluetooth headphones and answer the call, if it is a message I can quickly respond via voice or using short pre-preprogrammed messages until I am in a place to send a longer message.
A complete unknown right in the Apple watch universe is what functionality third-party apps will bring. I am currently working on an app that will assist in my daily commute. The app will allow me to quickly glance down at my watch to see how long until the next bus or train arrives and notify me with a simple buzz when I need to walk out of my house to catch the next bus. The ability to not be dependent on your phone for this type of information is what makes the watch a valuable tool.
There will be a lot to learn when these watches hit the market. We have seen Apple numerous times now completely change the way we think about a product line and I am confident that will be the case here with the watch. I will be sure to share my insights as we get closer to launch and even more once I have the watch in my hand.