6 days ago, I mounted my high-horse and slaughtered the iWatch, the immediate rumors surrounding its release, and the wider, intrinsic concept of an iWatch. You can read the full article here, which I would highly recommend if you haven’t done so already. If not, you may misunderstand some of my points in this piece. To summarise however, I slated the name “iWatch”, laid out the problem of innovation, and criticized the social stigma attached to wearing such a device. It was quite the bloodbath, and needless to say, it ruffled a couple of feathers. Since then, I’ve been turning over the idea in my mind, and I’ve decided to lay out my thoughts on paper… well, WordPress.
It has come to my attention that I may have jumped the gun slightly, and now I don’t have a leg to stand on. Now it’s time for me to bow my head, and accept that the iWatch is probably a viable concept, and a potential product that might soon wear the Apple logo. Reformed and renewed, let’s do this.
The most obvious pointer to a potential iWatch is the success of smart watches that already exist. The Kickstarter projects TikTok and Pebble are doing really well. Having racked up tremendous financial support in their opening days of publicity, both are now solid performers in the market. Alongside these, is the Sony Smart Watch, a purpose built smart watch which offers the functionality of the TikTok (which uses Apple’s iPod nano) inside a permanent wristwatch design similar to the Pebble. The pinnacle of smart watch technology is the i’m Watch, which has its own fully fledged operating system and app store.
All of these devices bring notifications, reminders, alarms, diaries, messages, and the time directly to your wrist. The success of these products makes one thing incredibly clear. The demand for these products is real, and it is substantial. With a market well established, you can bet your bottom dollar that Apple has at least sniffed this market. The success of TikTok is also a very promising statistic, because the TikTok functions around iOS, which proves that Apple’s operating system works on the wrist. iOS on the nano also works incredibly well, providing excellent functionality cloaked in a sleek design. With some added functionality I’m sure that iOS would make for a fantastic smart watch operating system. The must-have features are obviously Bluetooth and Siri, which would provide the watch with its wireless capability and Smartphone compatibility. There is no doubt that an “iWatch” would be a marvel of mobile wrist-wear.
The other certain feature of a potential iWatch would be its design. As I mentioned in my previous article, Apple’s design is second to none, there’s really no reason to believe that an iWatch wouldn’t be a really nice piece of kit to wear. Design is an Apple speciality.
So there’s a good product, but why would you buy one? I’ve considered a couple of reasons, but I suppose the one of the biggest markets would be the tech user with a hectic lifestyle. When you’re on the go in a whirlwind job, or you need to keep your eyes on the road, a smart watch would come in really handy. A smart watch would also fit well into an athletic lifestyle, giving you control of music and messages during a workout or recreation.
Those are two of the most obvious uses I can think of, and its safe to say that there are certainly more uses out there. The most obvious benefit a smart watch brings is convenience, and Apple can give you convenience like no one else can.
This is the most thought I’ve given to the iWatch for a while now, but I still have a couple of issues. First off, the name “iWatch” still hits me like nails on a chalkboard. I am quite certain such a device wouldn’t carry the name “iWatch”, it sounds too cheesy, too obvious, I just can’t see it.
There’s also the price to consider, the i’m watch currently retails for stupid amounts of money. The cheapest versions cost around the same price as most mid-range smartphones, and we all know that Apple’s products don’t price well. I think its safe to say, that if a potential iWatch was priced similarly to its competitors, then it would need to be absolutely incredible to merit a purchase.
And as for social stigma, maybe its just a personal thing. I don’t think I’ll ever buy a “smart-watch”, because I wasn’t born in the 80s, and space travel isn’t as cool as it used to be, neither is Star Trek. That being said, I know that our very own Cam Bunton, is chomping at the bit to get his hand on one of these, and I don’t doubt there are countless others who share his sympathies.
Are you one of them? What are your thoughts on the iWatch? Would you buy one? What features should it have? Leave your comments below, and be sure to follow me on Twitter @TiP_Stephen