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Apple Watch: Will it be a hit or a miss?

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  Source: Apple
Source: Apple

Monday is Apple Watch Day. Some say it is the most important moment for Apple since the launch of the iPhone in 2007. Some are impressed and speak of massive success; others have already decided the new wrist device will be a monumental flop. I’d like to go on record as a supporter of the concept of the wrist-borne communicator in general and of the Apple Watch in particular. I am a died-in-the-wool wristwatch man, unlike, it seems many younger people, so I am naturally receptive to the idea of a wearable that replaces a traditional and familiar object. In fact, I have been fascinated for a couple of years and have already tried, and found wanting, the Pebble and the Citizen Proximity.

  Google Glass has flopped because it is an idea before its time. The Apple Watch is currently the best way forward in wearable technology (Photo Mike Evans)
Google Glass has flopped because it is an idea before its time. The Apple Watch is currently the best way forward in wearable technology (Photo Mike Evans)

The key to the success of a smartwatch is seamless connectivity and, for iPhone or iPad owners, the Apple watch is likely to prove the most compelling. It has the Apple name and I think it will sell in large quantities to existing users of the company’s devices. I also believe it will attract non-Apple buyers and, to a large extent, will create the same halo effect that the early iPhone demonstrated in relation to Macs. Once hooked on the ease of use of iOS, backed by the Apple eco-system, users found it an easy to decision to buy a Mac when the old PC reached the end of its life. This is one of the most significant factors in the re-emergence of the niche Mac leading to its current dominance among the computer cognoscenti.

Apple has sunk a lot of time, effort and money into developing the Watch, even to the extent of employing experts from the luxury goods market as well as from the established watch industry. It would surprise me greatly, therefore, if all this planning came to naught. I cannot see the Apple Watch being a flop as so many pundits have forecast. Apple has a knack with these things, as it proved with the iPhone, another device which was written off by experts such as John Dvorak.

So I am optimistic and will be one of the first in line for the Apple Watch when it is launched. I tend to agree with John Biggs, writing in TechCrunch:

So here I go with my prediction: the Apple Watch won’t be a flop, it will be a success. It will change multiple industries at once and force entrenched players to rethink every one of their strategies. The watch will grow a fascinating ecosystem of accessories and new industries dedicated to shrinking commerce, mapping, interaction, and dating down to a watch’s smaller real estate will be born. Until VR becomes seamless, the watch is the next notification and interaction frontier and if anyone is going to pierce that envelope it’s Apple. And they will sell millions.

The point John makes about the notification and interaction frontier is valid. Google Glass has failed because we are not yet ready for such a radical step. It is fundamentally a good idea ahead of its time.

For the moment wearable technology has to blend in without being objectionable or embarrassing. A device on the wrist is the obvious solution. It is not seen as nerdy, unlike Google Glass, and can even make a powerful fashion statement. There is talk that the gold version of Apple Watch will sell for up to $10,000 while even the cheaper models will cost $350.  

While you are waiting for the big day, why not visit Mixyourwatch.com to plan which model and colour you will favour?

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Here’s a little something I made earlier using Mixyourwatch.com. This dark steel Apple Watch with matching steel band is currently the one I will…possibly….maybe…. choose. But I reserve the right to change my mind until the minute I walk into the Apple Store