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April 22, 2016

The Apple Death Watch

Filed under: Main — admin @ 12:01 am

Anyone have an Apple Watch?

I didn’t think so. The product isn’t doing as well as the Big A intended. It’s sexy, yes, but mostly impractical. The public figured that one out real quick. And now, almost one year after its introduction, few are getting excited about the Apple Watch II.

The title of the article at Quartz says it all: A year after its launch, it’s now clear that pretty much no one needs an Apple Watch

My favorite part of the article is a quote from Steve Wozniak. He did a Reddit “Ask Me Anything” post and was asked about the watch. He wrote:

I mean I love my Apple Watch, but – it’s taken us into a jewelry market where you’re going to buy a watch between $500 or $1100 based on how important you think you are as a person. The only difference is the band in all those watches. Twenty watches from $500 to $1100. The band’s the only difference? Well this isn’t the company that Apple was originally, or the company that really changed the world a lot.

I must confess that the device looks sexy. It has a great design. The Apple Watch II will be thinner, which is to be expected. Yet I feel Apple — and the rest of the smartwatch manufacturers — continue to miss the mark.

Back in November of 2013, I wrote about what would make a smartwatch work and what wouldn’t. I suppose I’m half vindicated because the articles I’m reading today reflect much of my commentary.

The key text I wrote still holds true:

My advice would be that the Smartwatch be entirely voice activated, all audio I/O. You talk to it, it talks back. No screen!

I’ve changed my mind just a wee bit in the 2½ years since I wrote that post. I think the smartwatch should have a screen, but not a touchscreen. That way you can mute the thing and still see results, but primary input should be using your voice. That’s the part that the manufacturers don’t understand. They somehow believe that a smartwatch should be a second monitor for a smartphone. If sales reflect the success of that philosophy, then it’s just not working.

And in the Big Picture, Apple is going to need something nifty and desired if it’s to maintain its reputation as one of the coolest companies ever. The Apple Watch was their first new product in 5 years, the first since the passing of Steve Jobs. They need something cool and quick to stay on top.

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