Personally I don't know that there's any watch that would really get me to start wearing watches at all again -- I never liked them that much to begin with. But this knocks down an awful lot of the criticisms I've had of existing smartwatches. The smaller Apple Watch is 38mm, certainly not small but by no means an irrationally huge behemoth. (Even the larger is only 42mm, I believe.) When you consider the three lines, two sizes, and multiple bands, there's dozens of combinations available. You may personally not like the fashion sense, but other than the Moto 360 this is the first smartwatch that's had a fashion sense to criticize. (And guys, the Moto 360 is 46mm, so let's not pretend it's svelte, either.)
But what's really interesting to me is that Apple has clearly put a lot more thought into how interactions on a device like this should work than anybody else. Yes, I'm sure every single component has an antecedent you can point to, just like the iPhone's interaction model. Except that nobody put it all together like that before the iPhone. And nobody put it all together like this before the Apple Watch.
I'm not so glib as to say that catcalls when Apple introduces a new product are a sure sign of success (I remember the iPod Hifi, thanks). But again, it's hard not to see a few recurring patterns in the responses: oh, look, it doesn't do everything that it could (or that competitors already do!) and it's too expensive. If it sells well, it'll only because of the Apple faithful buying everything.
And, of course, if it sells well, than within a year all smartwatches will adapt its interaction model. Other manufacturers will come out with variants that Apple isn't making, and we can move onto the evergreen phase of dismissing Apple as a company that just copies everybody else.
I strongly disagree.
I think that Apple actually took the easy way out here - they seemed to have approached the problem as "how can we make iOS usable on a smaller screen" and came up with interfaces like the crown and the (albeit pretty) circle-based homescreen UI to access apps to tackle those issues. Which is interesting, because they started off their presentation explicitly saying they didn't want to just scale down iOS.
Google, on the other hand, approached the problem of "how can we make wearables useful as a platform" rather than "how can we scale down Android" and created the intuitive cards interface (which, as a Moto 360 user, is remarkably convenient) and Google Now-based contextual awareness of info you need when you need it. Android Wear doesn't even have an app selector easily accessible, because they don't want you to use the watch that way - it's hard to hunt for apps on a tiny screen, so instead they push contextual information at you as you need it in an easy-to-use way.
I have high hopes for both platforms in the years to come, but I don't find Apple's watch design to be smarter or better thought-out as it is right now (and I'm typing this on a Macbook Air, so I have an appreciation for Apple).
The ironic thing here is that Android Wear seems to be the simpler solution. Android Wear is an extension of your phone - a way to process information on your wrist.
Apple Watch seems to be another way to interact. They mentioned glanceable information as somewhat of a footnone during the presentation (although their implementation seems pretty good). They mostly seemed to focus on additional communication tools, an image viewer, setting up navigation on your watch, having "apps" on your watch. With Apple Watch there is a lot more going on than just contextual information.
Because of that Apple Watch seems to have more features. Those features may make it more useful, but they also might not. Those features do seem to make Apple Watch a more complicated solution. It's hard to see which of these properties make one better over the other, but it's interesting to see the approaches are really quite different.
So I do think Google has the edge when it comes to (contextual) information in general, but of course Glances is only part of what Apple Watch offers.
It's been the same way for every major product- iMac was chastised for lacking a floppy drive, the iPod, iPhone and iPad were all poo-poohed.
In every case someone has said "X is better!" And in every case so far that X has turned out to maybe have some particular features, or better stats for some particular stat, but not to be engineered to the level of the Apple product.
Particularly with the android example- the only way they were able to compete was to change from a blackberry copy to an counterfeit iOS interface. Which they did very quickly. I haven't seen anything innovative from Google since 2001 (unless you count gmail as innovative, which I would so, that's the exception.) Android is still a terrible, clunky piece of junk, even with so many years to copy Apple.
We'll see when the Apple watch is on the market - but really, Samsung and Googles watches so far have appeared to be basically copies of guesses of what apple was going to make (given that the Apple watch has been rumored so long) rather than genuinely well considered and innovative devices.
Kinda the way HP put out a "slate" computer at Comdex the year the iPad was announced, Balmer something to go up on stage and brag about and "beat Apple to market with".
I do really wish, if Google wants to compete with Apple, they did something innovative (Microsoft did with their Metro UI) or if not innovative, something really good.
But it seems that in the way that Apple doesn't quite "get" web services, Google doesn't quite get operating systems.
Edit: Use android regularly, unfortunately. Google maps in JS was pretty innovative, but I think that's part of the Gmail invention- e.g.: web 2.0. I give google credit for inventing Web 2.0. Or at least pushing it forward quite a bit.
Not in the last few years, not even close. Android is pretty amazing right now, I love it.
The response has always been the same; one segment pointing out problems, another pointing out how "visionary" the new thing is.
If you are as old as you claim to be, and still fall foul of corporate machinations - then "sucks to be you". Next you'll tell us what your current corporate master told you to say.
There a many things wrong with what you wrote; the most glaring is: "haven't seen anything innovative from Google since 2001".
Later you go on to say, "unless you count gmail".
1. gmail wasn't released until 2004
2. the whole thing called "ads" wasn't available until 2001.
3. Android copied iOS. Which copied Windows. Which copied MacOS. Which copied GEM. Which copied x/PARC. Someone once said "good artists copy, great artists steal".
4. I guess you keep missing the news about Google's moonshot project (loom, wing, self-driving cars).
If you feel condemmed to define yourself by the applications and services that a particular company makes available (be it Google or Microsoft, or Apple), please understand that you are a shill.
Neither Superman, nor Google, nor Apple will save you.
Save your energy.
Ironically you kind of reinforced his point... Ads was in 2001 - that's his claim of most recent innovation from Google unless you count gmail.
You point out gmail was released in 2004, but he's just said he's not counting gmail.
iOS didn't copy windows at all - it was innovative in that it was by far the best mobile operating system UI. Windows didn't have a mobile operating system at the time
Google's research projects aren't products yet - what happens if they cancel them because they're infeasible in 10 years time?
You could have mentioned chrome/android/chromebook/nexus
Windows didn't have a mobile operating system at the time
> Just because an innovation is only a research project*
To which I will have to vehemently disagree with you. Otherwise we'll have to start celebrating science fiction authors for their "innovation."
The point is that actually shipping a successful product to consumers is the true mark of innovation. Anything else is research.
Also, I don't think that the parent commenter said how visionary the products were. He/she merely highlighted the common responses to Apple's releases.
And before you label me a "shill" (is this Slashdot...?!??!!!!?!??!), I am a happy Windows/Mac/Android developer, and I don't have an iPhone.
You really need to step out of that distortion field for a little while.
Apple has turned out some turkeys in its time, but people only seem to remember the highlights.
I haven't seen anything innovative from Google since 2001
That's some powerfully strong blinders you've willingly put on there. And calling maps part of Gmail? Seriously?
I mean, on a Mac how many people use Launchpad?
I do when I forget the name of an app. Pinching all five fingers together on a trackpad is super easy. But then again, I also use the Dashboard :)
I might start using Launchpad more. The transition is pretty!
That's innovative! Apple certainly doesn't do that! Hah!
(I jest, I jest. GMail and Maps have been going for years, and are pretty great , although I don't like the new UI on maps - things pop up from all over the place and the UI elements are teeny weeny. But yes, I'm a happy Google/Android user thanks).
EDIT: Hey! This was meant as a joke! Don't take it too seriously! Don't downvote me to oblivion! Please! Have mercy and compassion!
EDIT: Again! It's a joke! It's a joke! Such downvoting enthusiasm.
They took the "Microsoft" route.
They refused to make hard decisions about what was right for users and use of this unique platform and it's all pointed in a bad direction for that lack of focus, attention to detail and execution.
Smart Watches -- particularly those that require a smart phone -- have about 2 seconds before you hit the "stylus moment".  But the watch demo was oddly fixated on long interactions (the most difficult way to text emoji to date) and stupid interactions (browsing pictures on a 1" screen?).
The cases where watch-interaction makes more (or primary) sense  were given very little screen time, or mere lip service. And, oddly enough, those cases seem to have been given more thought and have more obvious, natural, direct, and thus better interactions .
Enabling those complex interactions, that are going to be inefficient and annoying, is going to lead to an avalanche of apps that similarly invite users to do things fundamentally ill-suited to a watch. Poorly conceived apps, lazily-ported apps -- The ecosystem as a whole is going to suffer for having that around. 
And then there's the interaction methods. iOS was a boon for computer use because it's so obvious, direct and natural. Many/most people never really got the hang of click vs double-click vs right-click. Many struggled with the core indirection of pushing the pointer around the screen with their mouse and the whole "scroll down to push the page up" mess (that only makes sense if you grew up on keyboard-only interaction and the also-awkwardly-named "page up"/down keys).
Apple sweated the details, stripped away the distractions and non-essentials, and they nailed it.
But what does the watch bring? Quick-tap vs long-tap vs force-tap? Are they kidding? Undiscoverable hidden interaction zones in corner(s?) or off-screen-swipes to execute features with no articulated conceptual logic as to "what goes where" or how the (in)existence of those features is even conveyed? Those demo controls showed more arcane gestures than a Harry Potter movie.
And the crown? It zooms the screen, except when it doesn't. It scrolls lists, except when it doesn't. It manipulates input controls, except when it doesn't -- and only if you apply the appropriate tap to successfully shift focus to the desired input. This is a mode-switching UX nightmare.
Stated plainly -- that watch, that demo? -- they blew it.
They've got a few months where they could course-correct. They've got a review step where they could filter out "bad" apps to protect the ecosystem from what they accidentally enabled (and encouraged by focusing the demo on it).
But I am not optimistic that a group who could green-light that demo is capable of discerning the difference. I think Apple's fundamental "taste" is in question. 
 Jobs famously stated "if you see a stylus, they blew it." The key here is that "blew it" doesn't mean "they made a bad tablet". It means "they never understood mobile or touch." They never understood that the use cases and ergonomics require a fundamental re-thinking of interaction. They never understood that you can't just port over things that worked somewhere else and only make sense given prior experience with something else.
 e.g. when the phone itself is less accessible (while exercising, while in-bed, while hands are collecting purchased items), thus giving you longer than 2 seconds before the "I might as well have pulled out my phone" moment.
e.g. when direct use of the phone would defeat the feature (to use the watch as remote viewfinder/shutter release for the phone's camera).
 notification triage; workout/stopwatch/timer start/stop; simple location-based interactions like payments, unlocking a hotel room door, etc. It all looked far more sane/natural/straightforward.
 We all just saw what happened with Microsoft's odd mode-shifting app circus on their Surface tablets. If you enable the "conceptually new, thus more difficult, but right" interaction method and "conceptually familiar, thus easier, and wrong" interaction method, how many devs are really going to put in the work to get it right? Recent experience suggests enough devs will take shortcuts that your users will become frustrated and your ecosystem stained.
 I don't think Apple's taste is definitely gone. But the notion that Apple might be "coasting on momentum" is no longer something I can laugh off. Not on a core design level.
And an alternative explanation to "they're coasting" on momentum, is that the Watch is pushing iphone/ipad interactions where they don't belong because Apple's captured by their own momentum. And that's far, far worse.
What's interesting to me is the extent to which the Apple Watch is designed to be interacted with, which contrasts strongly with Google's vision of wearables (both Android Wear and Glass) as assistants that are there when you need them, but which otherwise disappear so you can stay immersed in life.
In contrast, many of the criticisms of this watch centre on the incoherent design, awkward interaction with a physical scroll-wheel AND touch interface (which Apple are not even allowing people to try out in the demos), and the grab-bag of features added to it, apparently without thought about how they all interact. It looks like it does too much, and none of it well.
They can possibly rescue this mess in the time they have before launch by polishing the software, but I'm hesitant about the concept of this scroll wheel (what they call a digital crown), which they have now committed to for the long term, and sounds like it is going to be very awkward when combined with physical touches and on the wrist, and pointless if you also require users to touch the screen. It would have been far nicer just to keep this simpler and use swipes and taps, and not try to hobble it with a traditional 'watch' shape.
It really does feel as if no-one was in charge of the design here, and lots of different teams worked on different features, which were mashed together at the last minute, without someone to force them all to integrate properly. I do believe Apple is entering a new era now - becoming a larger more stable company, and is now led by an operations person (Cook), not someone obsessed with design and willing to take massive risks in pursuit of perfection (Jobs). That is starting to have an effect on the products they make.
That said, this is a beautiful piece of design. I think they've outdone themselves with this one, it's a truly wonderful device. Unfortunately, I have a horrible feeling that it will only be a matter of time before we see the usual Samsung vs. Apple patent violation claims being thrown around again (despite any possible prior art etc.).
Personally, I still think the tech isn't quite compact enough yet, but we're only one or two generations away from a slim-line, waterproof, and functionally integrated piece of kit that will actually complement the existing tech. The integration with dive computers / cycling computers / sports cameras / personal drones :-) etc. could be incredible!
Hopefully Apple's entry onto the smart-watch scene doesn't end up mired in too many patent battles... I'd like to see these devices progress as fast as possible!
Bravo Apple design team!
The Apple watch looks very common and cheap; the only good thing about its look is that it is highly personalizable.
I don't know which bits look common or cheap to you, I quite like the use of Sapphire (usually only used on high end watches) and stainless steel. I just think the unit itself is still a bit chunky, as I'm a fan of slim watches.
As far as personalization goes, I think if there were an identical unit running Android, it would be inherently more tweakable, and the main reason I won't be buying one of these is that it will invariably be designed to only work well with IOS / OSX devices (of which I own none).
So, maybe a failure as a product, because it stimulated competition that, if it hadn't come about would have left Apple with a %100 share of iPod docks.
But given how many iPod docks have sold, I'm sure that market would have been viable, even if only Apple were making them.
What?? The Bose SoundDock was product of the year in 2004 -- 2 years before the iPod HiFi came out. Apple was behind the times and completely missed the mark with the HiFi.
How are we measuring "more thought" now? Mega-Turings?
I think this statement is very unfair to Android Wear. A non-biased look shows some pretty innovative aspects at work and a usable design. Its also really unfair to claim that you know all about the Apple Watch when no one has one yet people have been using AW for months.
The idea that Apple is putting out a vision where you can communicate with people nearby in non-verbal ways is really powerful.
You have a company that has managed to deliver an awesome mobile experience on for consumer and enterprise shipping a device that can do everything from payments to health monitoring to door access. That's a ridiculously powerful thing.
What android can or can't do technically doesn't matter. Google, samsung, etc can't make the relationships that Apple can right now.
In other words, can a merchant reasonably accept Apple Pay without accepting Google Wallet? I'd be surprised if they could, but I don't really know -- I'm legitimately asking.
A quick bit of Google indicates ISO14443 and EMV as the relevant protocols, but I'm not 100% sure there's not some incompatible extension thing going on that would preclude treating different companies' implementations the same.
Somehow this has taken off as a talking point, yet all NFC secure element payment solutions qualify as "card present". Google Wallet, for example, is card present. The NFC on my card is card present.
It isn't about negotiations, but indicates the security of the presentation. NFC secure elements are considered card equivalent.
(Also where do you live? lol)
Here in Vancouver, BC I would say these sales terminals are becoming quite common place.
I'll take this opportunity to also say that Apple Maps still don't work here. By which I mean, they don't work at all. They have no data. The entire app is little more than a graphic of a map and a UIAlertView that says "No results found".
You should also remember that he was hardly in the majority with those comments. Further he was technically correct, and the iPod succeeded because of a synergy with other parts of Apple's empire (notably iTunes).
But what's really interesting to me is that Apple has clearly put a lot more thought into how interactions on a device like this should work than anybody else.
How so? Google put, it seems, enormous thought and effort into Android Wear. It is a whole interaction and ecosystem built specifically for smart watches. Because Tim Cook gives some trite speech about not using a smartphone OS on a watch (this was, it is worth noting, not long after celebrating how xcode now supports dynamic layouts...you know, the thing that Android did a half a decade ago, and was widely deridden as "running smartphone apps on a tablet")?
You've tried to cover every possible Apple defense, so you seem pretty committed, but you have to understand that a lot of people are derisive because we've been hearing the Apple faithful railing about these same attributes of competitor devices for months. Announcing before availability, large and bulky, needs to be tethered to a device, square, and so on...I have to imagine all of those once liabilities will suddenly turn into strengths.
I love my Apple products, but there is absolutely no doubt that there is a distortion field, and it really is hard to stomach.
I was actually quite disturbed with the Apple unveiling of the watch, I know it has been expected and what not. But a device that is literally monitoring my heart rate constantly all day, guiding me down a street with "gentle taps like a person" to tell me which direction to go. I feel like a small part of humanity is being optimised away. It's an incredibly scary thought.
At the same time, it's enabling exciting new possibilities. I can meet people with shared interests in a huge multitude of ways. I can talk to practically anyone I've ever met within a minute. I can learn how to do almost anything at a basic level given some modest interest and an Internet connection.
I think people are only beginning to realize the all-encompassing nature of how technology is affecting how we live, because it has become so incredibly pervasive and is moving so quickly. The human experience is most definitely changing, but it's not all for the worse. It's easy to be sentimental about the past, but the possibilities are often too enticing to hold onto those relics in favor of new things.
Here's a link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Visual_prosthesis
I have an hour commute in the bay area twice a day, I used waze(now owned by Google) every trip. It's rare that it routes me in the same route twice in a row, there are all sorts of dynamic conditions that affect traffic conditions, and this is just the tip of the iceberg. Waze also alerts my departure time and accurate ETA to my wife, which is also pretty cool.
Google now is also really cool, if creepy. It sees the airplane ticket confirmation in my email, or a concert ticket, it computes realtime traffic information, then gives me a heads up that I may want to start thinking about leaving, without any input from me.
This seems like a much better system them relying on myself to set some sort of calendar event which is not at all reactive to any dynamic conditions and is predicated on me to remember to do so. It also does this without any input from myself. I see it as an actual step in the direction of "Personal Digital Assistant" that was promised to us so long ago and services like google now are just in their infancy.
Now saying all that, I have no plays of going to Apple, I don't like their close-ecosystem, and have little faith that the iwatch will be the cash cow that the iphone/ipad was for Apple. I have for quite a long time and still do feel that Apple pulled a one/two hit wonder by being in the right place at the right time with the right team.
That is absolute crap. iTunes had no foothold to speak of in the marketplace. The notion of Apple having an "empire" at the time of the iPod’s release (or even at the time of the iPod’s mainstream success) was laughable.
iTunes did not have a foothold in the marketplace until after the success of the iPod was evident.
As far as you "success of the ipod was evident" comment, that seems like solid case of hindsight on your part.
The iPod did not work on Windows (which was, what, 99% market-share in those days?) and required this insane thing called Firewire. Firewire. Even the name was funny to me.
I was a Linux fan-boy, patiently waiting for The Year Of The Linux Desktop, and was quite dismissive of that bulky little device, much like everyone else who was a techie. The Rio or whatever is what people were sporting.
And yet it basically destroyed the entire Taiwanese MP3 player market in the US in what, 2 years? Nokia should have seen it coming 7 years later...
* While the first MacBook Air was crazy expensive and nearly universally panned for lack of a DVD-ROM drive, the MBA was repositioned in 2011 as the ultraportable replacement for the MacBook and is now the best-selling Mac.
* The first iPhone was blasted for its absurd price (due in part to lack of carrier subsidization), lack of 3G, lack of copy and paste (remember how upset people got about this? lol) and no third party apps. By the time the 3G rolled around, most of the software concerns were addressed and the price drop made sales jump $10m from 2007 to 2008.
* The first iPad (also known as the iTampon if you were following Twitter on the day it was announced) was criticized as being a giant iPhone, having a low pixel density (merely 1024x768), and lacking any ability to get "real work" done on it. Each iteration of the iPad has gotten more and more positive reviews due to the incremental changes (mostly in processor and pixel density) made over the years.
It more or less goes without saying, then, that I'm not really surprised that people expected more from the Apple Watch. Apple's really fortunate to have such a great community of rabid early adopters who are more than happy to put its products through the ringer and hold Apple to a higher standard.
"Failure" is not determined by "lots of complaints", but by "very few sales"
And as a counter-point, the Surface RT has a second generation and may have a third. Does this imply success, or that MS went "all in"?
iTunes is still the same trainwreck that it was 10 years ago.
Apple seems to work hard to keep it the same sluggish nightmare, no matter how fast the hardware becomes that it runs on.
I don't use it on Windows anymore - and I only installed it on there out of interest! Same went for Safari on Windows.
(Winamp was very popular on Windows, it had no UI guidelines whatsoever)
I use Floola to shove songs on my iPod. Might be worth a look? (Mine is a 6th-gen classic).
We know that it took off, but that was wholly on the back of iTunes - 0.99 tracks and much easier use than competitors sold the iPod, not some fundamental excellence of the device.
People forget now but while we revile iTunes generally now, at the time it was the killer feature of the iPod, and the initial iPhone success.
iTunes was such a monumental hit that it carried iPods with it - there's even a business case on the matter:
I've learned that this works with women as well.
Yes, Android had dynamic layout before iOS. And? Qt had it before everyone. As a general rule, everything everyone ever gets enthusiastic about can be safely dismissed as having first appeared in a Nokia product that all 27 Finns who bought it are still fanatical about. Also, it was probably implemented in Lisp.
The fact that you believe what Apple says about Google rather than taking the two minutes to actually look at how Android Wear works and see that that statement is completely false shows that the distortion field is in full effect.
Still, when they were talking about the digital crown, they did make it sound like they were trying to claim they invented the optical rotary encoder.
Citation needed. As GP said, the Android Wear team has considered the UX for wearables from the ground up.
If you ignore the LG Prada.
Actually, I'd say that the best iPhone-before-iPhone was the Danger Hiptop (a/k/a T-Mobile Sidekick). Much more data capability than almost anything else, a reasonably good browser, and even an app store. It'd be interesting to see where that evolutionary line would have been in 2014 if it hadn't been killed by iOS and Android. (And by Microsoft buying Danger and mangling it to hell, of course.)
As you say, others had app stores first. If Android had launched without the ability to install apps then some Apple blogs would still be talking about how it was fundemantally not designed for the current smartphone era and would never be as good as the iPhone, as they currently do based on misinterpretation of whether touchscreens were intended to be supported from the start.
I disagree with that definition: For example all cheapest Nokia phones since a long time ago supported (roughly when they got color screens, some even before that) installing J2ME applications. Same for cheap Samsungs and LGs of the same time.
And these are definitely not smart phones.
""Downloadable personal applications via Java technology""
You've soundly beaten down notions that I certainly didn't state. Nor have I seen everyone else. However the narrative among the Apple camp was that competitors were desperately rushing to deliver vapour, and that their stodgy square mega watches were non-starters.
Yes, Android had dynamic layout before iOS. And? Qt had it before everyone.
Again, you've firmly argued against something not being discussed. No one ever claimed that Android was first, however Android was quite specifically criticized by Apple (as were, tellingly, larger smartphones, and smaller tablets, and people eat it up). Because it turns out that Apple just says today whatever benefits their contemporary product line, much like just about every other company. And that's fine, but somehow it turns into higher meaning.
It wasn't to create a "one app, run many" type system that Android has. It was merely to help developers support the different screen sizes within each category (iPhone, iPad). Apple still encourages developers to have UIs that are specifically tailored to the iPhone or iPad experience.
iOS 8 introduces a concept called Size Classes, and the tl;dr is that the iPhone 6+ in landscape is considered a tablet.
You mean exactly like Android.
Pretty remarkable having clueless people telling me that I don't know what I'm talking about: I develop in both Android and iOS. But please, inform me.
Apple baked into the SDK what it tells developers: iPhones and iPads are different devices that need different UIs. Android doesn't have this clear delineation.
Edit: Because I am being downvoted so heavily for this let me be clear. I don't agree with what Apple did only trying to explain it. I would imagine that Apple never expected to be releasing phones and tablets that are so close in physical size to each other.
Furthermore if the phone is as large as the tablet maybe your tablet is your phone or viceversa. There are tablets that can make phone calls with regular phone SIM cards. Example: the Galaxy Tab 3 which starts at 7". I've seen people doing that without a earpiece. An odd sight.
Its... it's a consumer electronics brand. I'll truly never understand how this stuff gets people so riled up. I mean, I used to get all hot and bothered when I followed smartphones (2006 represent!), but nowadays we're at a point where every gadget is just a riff on another gadget, and that's fine. Now no matter what brand I'm using, things just work they way I want them too, and that makes me happy.
My personal preference is apple. I have other apple devices, I'm used to apple devices, and they are comfortable to me. But if you like Samsung, that's cool too.
And I don't like the meme that says I, as an apple device owner, criticise everything else "the competition" does yet celebrate it when apple do it. I'm not that person, and most people I know aren't that person.
Of extraordinary social and technological importance. I work in technology, and shifts in mobile technology have significant impacts on my life.
I can understand if this were a knitting board and someone made a comment like yours. In technology, however, it is extremely pertinent to what we do.
I think the thing that many commenters miss is their perspective, and it is a sad missing factor. It also makes these discussions appear trivial and very petty; look at old Slashdot archives discussing new products and it is pretty sad.
Just a thought. Keep me in the loop with your knitting board.... :-)
I think that's a very weak argument, as iTunes wasn't available for the PC market for years. The Mac market at that point was nascent and lots of people were buying iPods w/o the ability to use iTunes.
The iPod was supported on Windows before iTunes was available through Musicmatch Jukebox, which Apple bundled with Windows iPods. I don't think there were many people buying iPods before then just to look at. :)
Very few bought the iPod in the first two years, and it was a commercial failure. It was iTunes on Windows that brought it mainstream.
The way Xcode (and iOS8) support dynamic layouts is nothing like Android.
Xcode 6 allows you to have multiple designs/constaints within the same UI file, for different screen sizes.
Dynamic layout a'la Android is "one size fits all", which is no way similar to what's Apple doing.
Since I'm getting heavily downvoted, I'd like at least a chance to clarify.
I'm perfectly aware that it is technically possible to create universal tablet/phone Android app, with separate layouts for each. However, that's not what's usually being done.
I believe reasons for this for two-fold:
1. Google's initial message after introducing tablets didn't push hard enough for separate UI (or didn't at all)
2. Developers mentality
@2: I think it's just a different way that the two ecosystem operates.
When Apple tells developers to jump, devs ask how high.
When Google tells developers to jump, they go "yeah, well, that's just, like, your opinion, man".
Aside from CSS-type "responsive" design, Android layouts have always had resource tags, which means that you can set different layouts for screen sizes, orientations, pixel densities, cultures, text direction, and so on.
Apps that didn't demonstrate this on tablets were as they were because the developers were lazy or simply didn't care, not because of a limitation of the platform.
I haven't picked up my Android tablet in like half a year now, does Twitter and Facebook have a proper tablet android app by now?
Have you ever tried android wear? I read/watched some reviews (even with the 360) and seems to me far to be a completed thing.
Don't get me wrong, I have an android phone (and the only one) however, I really don't get it. Seems to me that the only intent of google is avoid an Apple monopoly without trying to bring something on the table.
Android itself is barely okay, however if you add custom OEM modifications + carrier modifications (really carriers allowed to write software???) to me the matter become just about "flag".
Yes, quite a lot. Have you?
Additionally, apple's device won't even be out for a minimum of 3 months (assuming it came out in january).
Which is the not completed thing again?
Truthfully, seeing what I saw, Apple's watch is just not a leap forward in any interesting way i can think of over android wear.
Maybe it'll win because of better marketing or whatever.
But it's interface did not look appreciably better to me, nor did it have anything that i would consider "a killer app" that android wear does not.
(I mainly use my wear device to track my running and biking paces, display notes like shopping lists, and display texts so that i know whether i should pull out my phone to respond to the person)
They could have chosen some axis to improve upon - waterproofness (i can scuba dive with my pebble but not my wear device), battery life, screen, whatever.
They are trying "software". Sometimes this is good, sometimes it's not (again though, I also don't find the ipad interface so much better than the android one. For the things i do on these devices, the ipad is a slim win, but has a shittier software keyboard by far).
 Sapphire is not interesting to me. My watch does not sit in my pocket with things likely to scratch it. I woodwork, and have worn wear devices for 6+ months now, and while i've scratched phones from chisels, saw blades, etc, i've never scratched my watch.
A higher res display or something would have been cooler.
High end watches have it for the same reason - people expect them to last forever.
If people are expecting a smartwatch (apple's or anyones) to last them 10 years, sapphire is going to be the least of their problems :)
FWIW: The reason they likely didn't put it on phones is because they haven't solved the brittleness problem that nobody else has really solved that well. If you drop sapphire, it tends to shatter. If you drop gorilla glass, it tends to bounce.
It makes sense on watches because nobody really drops watches that often, since they are normally held on your wrists by bands.
Isn't this the whole point?
When iPod, iPhone and iPad were first announced, it wasn't immediately obvious (to everyone) that they were a huge leap forward. It's not until people actually use them and we have the luxury of hindsight that we can say how groundbreaking they might have been.
"It's not until people actually use them and we have the luxury of hindsight that we can say how groundbreaking they might have been."
I'm not even sure what to make of this statement.
There have been a lot of history rewrites on why the iPhone succeeded.
If you want to say "we should wait and see", i'm fine with that. If you are saying "i'm sure they are amazing, and we are all just dumb for second guessing apple", this sounds a lot like the emperors new clothes. Past performance does not guarantee future results.
Apple had plenty of failures in the past that get glossed over and disappear (remember their social network?). This is true even of hardware (remember the cube? whee) and other major features.
While I doubt they'd get called out over it in the media, it may just disappear the same way a lot of other things did that didn't work out.
So assuming it will be one of the revolutionary devices, despite it seeming like it won't be, is a little too much for me. Happy to be wrong of course (i'd love to buy one if it's truly better), but not going to put faith in them :)
Apple Watch is not available yet, so I don't see the point. I rather prefer to buy something within few months than a "prototype" at retail price.
Can I ask you what is the android "wear", the only one I read some good things is the 360 (also announced 3/4 months before selling it) but it's not 6 months old.
Uh, what makes you think it also won't be essentially a prototype, like the iphone's first software basically was (web apps only), etc?
"Can I ask you what is the android "wear", the only one I read some good things is the 360 (also announced 3/4 months before selling it) but it's not 6 months old.
Android wear is the name of the device operating system for the android watches.
As for hardware, I've actually tried literally all of them. Right now, a samsung gear live happens to sit on my wrist most of the time.
The retail 360 is not 6 months old, that is certainly correct.
I can assure you i have worn wear devices for > 6 months :)
As for "what you read good things about", i don't know what to tell you. I actually tend to try things out more than just believing whatever the internet happens to think on a given day, which is heavily influenced (in all directions).
It's germane to this discussion, because even though I'm as baffled as you are by the thought of the Apple Watch as a fashion accessory, there's some evidence that if Apple can nail the basics of the device and has the market targeted right, this will be looked at years from now as a successful product iteration. Not the Apple Watch in general as a product line, but this particular version of it.
Compared to gorilla glass, on a watch that lasts 3-5 years?
What do you think sapphire buys you?
Have you ever done tests (I know for a fact that at least one of the very high end watchmakers didn't)?
In any case, high end watches last 30 years. Sapphire makes sense on that.
It's nice, don't get me wrong, but i don't see it as a prerequisite to having a good smartwatch that lasts 3-5 years.
I think the v1 will only look fashionable for at most two years.
every single non-sapphire watch i own has scratches on the glass. i've broken the screen on every single generation of phone to date. however, none of my sapphire automatics have a single flaw - the glass is still perfect after years of very frequent use, dropping, hitting against things, etc.
you just sound like a person who hasn't worn a watch for very long, or don't have a range of watches to compare against each other.
and i disagree with your fundamental point, which is that sapphire has no value on a device that lasts only a few years. of course it does - it's extremely strong material that withstands impact.
So is "crack resistance". Do you mean when someone tries to indent it? DO you mean when flexed in some other specific way? Do you specifically mean when dropped?
Materials have very different properties depending on what you are asking.
You can't just combine these very different things into some measure without some actual methodology for doing so.
"you just sound like a person who hasn't worn a watch for very long, or don't have a range of watches to compare against each other.
I have done both.
"and i disagree with your fundamental point, which is that sapphire has no value on a device that lasts only a few years. of course it does - it's extremely strong material that withstands impact.
This is just fundamentally false.
Sapphire does not withstand impact compared to gorilla glass (or almost any glass).
Sapphire is also very well known to be brittle.
But you don't have to take my word for it, it's been tested:
Sapphire cracks at 3ft drop, gorilla glass doesn't.
Additionally, my little materials science book on moh's hardness actually says:
"Brittleness basically indicates how resistant the material is to plastic deformation. A very brittle material will, when placed under stress, break/fracture rather than bend. In the case of a sapphire crystal versus a glass crystal, the sapphire is considerably more brittle. As a result, a sapphire crystal is more likely to chip or crack than is glass counterpart if both are subjected to an equally hostile stress (banging, etc.)."
You can find plenty of research on both if you want unbiased sources. I'm a bit lazy to go look it all up for you, but start here for sapphire:
Sapphire is brittle. It fractures and chips when dropped or deformed in that manner.
Most ion strengthened glasses are less brittle. Relative to sapphire, they tend not to fracture or chip when dropped or deformed in that manner
There are of course, materials that are even better for drops, but worse for abrasion resistance, like polycarbonate.
Additionally, once cracked or seriously scratched, the game changes for both, of course, as it's a matter of crack propagation, etc.
also, it's not good hn form to downvote someone you disagree with. i don't mind though, i have the points to spare.
clearly i'm not that cool, with two entire downvotes
I absolutely love the always on epaper screen on my Steel, plus how classy the whole device looks and feels - and the functionality it offers me. None of the new smartwatches have any appeal to me as having to charge them daily doesn't float my boat. If I need more functionality I'll just whip out my Samsung S5.
That said, it seems like Apple has taken each category of wearable, advanced it in some meaningful way, and merged all of them, for a device more than a sum of the others. Really depends how it feels as to whether that's true.
I'm guessing these could get derided as "fondle-wear" because the interactions seem intended to be touchy-feely. Reaching out to "tap" someone, or "sketching" instead of texting your S.O., these offer a human/device bond of some kind. Clever.
To be frank, for what i was using it for at the time, my Pebble worked wonderfully. It showed my running pace and my text messages, and when i was about to miss a meeting. That was pretty much what it was good for (I know it theoretically has an app ecosystem, but i gave up on things like evernote for pebble within about 3 minutes).
Once I got the wear, i expected to just use it as a color version of that. But i don't. While I do all those same things, I actually find myself using it to look at notes, to navigate with walking directions, and when nobody is around, I ask it to do stuff for me when my hands are busy or my phone is not around. I often leave my phone on the counter when in the shop or outside, and if i wanted to respond on the pebble, I had to run back to grab it. If i want to respond on my watch, i can just talk to it for the most part. I basically use it as a companion device like i used to use my phone. It fulfills most of the basic purposes.
So, all that said, if you are happy with the iphone + pebble steel, and there isn't anything you are hankering for, i personally doubt i'd change ecosystems just on a lark. But, certainly, i've found myself doing a lot more with my watch since i moved away from my Pebble.
(I guess i should point out i just don't give a crap about some things, like charging daily or not. I have to charge my phone anyway. So when i go to bed, and put my phone on it's charger, i put my watch on it's charger. At least for me, it's not the deal-killer others seem to find it. Certainly, not worrying about charging the pebble as often was nice, but i have to charge other stuff anyway, so it's not a big deal)
That's pretty much the summary of what I wanted to say. If they were quite good you didn't more than one within 6 months.
Anyway, tried a little the samsung (a joke) and the lg (another joke since you basically can't see it under the sunlight).
Moto 360 (I love Moto!) is quite nice although the os is not meant for a rounded display so many apps can't ... well ... simply show you everything (hence the "prototype" mark). However I haven't tried it personally, so maybe everything else can compensate.
This needs more words as to why you found it "a joke".
I had no trouble reading either the samsung, or the LG, under sunlight.
There needs to be an identifiable niche that these smartwatches could work with, and they ought to be marketed to that niche to really sell the idea of wearing a screen on your wrist. Similar to how Microsoft is positing that the Surface is intended to be an artist's easel, it's perfectly plausible for Google to market Android Wear to musicians, athletes, and early adopters -- but I haven't seen that effort from them yet. I get glimpses of this marketing approach from Apple's newfound moxie, but it still feels like everyone who makes a smartwatch is trying to sell it to everyone, which seems short-sighted given most people do not wear physical timepieces anymore.
There is potential -- but not now. Early smartphones were hollow and unfinished (yes, even the iPhone). Form and function will get better as time goes on, and there might be a legitimate use-case for devices such as these.
I don't wear a timepiece and haven't for many years, however, I was considering getting one of those health monitoring bands and then decided to wait because I bet the Apple watch would be a better product for that need.
So, while the iPhone has eliminated the need for a watch, the thing on the wrist isn't so much a watch as a notification system and monitoring system.
Apple positioned this as an accessory to the iPhone and that's how I would use it.
I'm not sure whether I would wear something on my wrist again or just stop after awhile, but I'm pretty sure I'm going to buy one of these when they come out.
For me, the $350-$450 it will cost is a little high but not something to worry about and I know they will get cheaper over time, as well as smaller etc.
But I'm not just out of college and worrying about money like that anymore.
I think there's a large market of people like me. I would be quite surprised if there wasn't enough value in the device to make me very happy with the purchase.
I think this is unfair, it isn't Apple people railing against this, it is everybody. And they will be again, in a couple of days. A lot more was expected of Apple in this arena, and it looks like they have not delivered the watch everybody was after.
Not universally, to be sure. Some people loved the iPod instantly. But there were plenty of others who couldn't see past the $400 price tag and said "Sure, the iPod: idiots price our devices."
The iPad also landed with a thud, at least online. The people who got their hands on them said "no wait, you really have to try this, it's a totally new experience", but that had to compete with a loud chorus of "meh", which I certainly understand. Mine (an Air) may not be the most indispensable Apple product I own, but it's easily the one I love the most, and the one that gives men the best sense of where Apple is going. That said, it was also a gift, and not something I would have bought for myself. Not until I actually had it and had been using it did I see it less an an individual device, and more as the favorite interface for a (far from realized) cloud-based future of computing. My point is that the Apply routinely makes choices with a long-range logic that is far from immediately self-evident.
The iPhone came the closest to being regarded as revolutionary right out of the gate, but even there the excitement was shortsighted. It seemed like the biggest "breakthrough" was getting a handle on voice mail. There was still a lot of doubt about full-touchscreen vs. BlackBerry's then-dominant tactile approach. There was bitching about the lack of apps (third party development was web-only) and of course, the endless complaining about Apple's "failure" to include "basic" stuff like cut and paste. There was no GPS, no CDMA, and many of the individual components - from the phone itself to the camera to the battery life - were pretty crappy.
But all these problems resolved themselves with time. Meanwhile, the fundamentals remained astonishingly stable. So much so that in many cases, major updates were visually indistinguishable from their predecessors. It took most people a long time to recognize how far-thinking the essential design choices really were. And to be fair, it generally took Apple a while before their own development path realized the full scope of the platform's potential.
But that's what these are, platforms built for the long run. If the past is any guide three things should be clear. (1) They come with very well considered development plans (2) What come to be seen as fundamental features of the platform (e.g. the App store) go unannounced when the platforms launch and (3) the immediate negative reactions - of which there are many - tend to be very short sighted.
So no, I will not be buying an Apple Watch in 2015, and probably not in 2016 either. But if the past is any guide, I expect that Apple will be delivering on this for a decade, if not decades to come. By the time it's ready to untether from the iPhone, I can see buying in. I'm looking forward to it.
BUT! give it to me for web browsing (and shopping???) and it was absolutely great. This bright realisation that many of our parents don't sit at home writing software or documents suddenly made sense; people had been buying computers for years just to go online.
And this influenced the entire market, such to the point that everyone is tagging on touchscreen this and touchscreen that, even where it isn't needed. Thankfully Apple hasn't done this and hasn't made the MacBook a touchscreen device.
Very clever. I am hopeful that this trend of influencing the market continues, and new Android watches with similar features come out. Competition is good.
Ha. Also, I can't wait until they do. Seriously, I've become so used to / enamored with the full touch interface on the iPad that I find myself reflexively tapping the play button for videos on my laptop. And instead of feeling stupid I get irritated because it should work.
I keep a bluetooth keyboard paired with the Air. If I'm plowing through a batch of emails, I can switch between that and touch very seamlessly. Overall, it's just a really great experience. And now I want the same thing on my laptop.
The touchpad on the MacBook is close enough to the keyboard that you can sort of use it with your thumb whilst your hands on the keyboard, and don't have to lift your arm if you need to use the touchpad with your fingers - you just move your arm backwards.
If it was a touchscreen, you'd be constantly lifting your arm, particularly as the native window resizing via keyboard on OSX is non-existent. (At least on Windows you can use the entire system for the most part with the keyboard, including resizing, snapping windows, minimizing, restoring etc.)
As you have pointed out, the iPod succeeded because of synergy with iTunes (though many of the replies to your comment raise excellent counterpoints, and I think it's revisionism to call what Apple had back then as an empire - like many others back then, we were 90% dismissively sure Apple was going to file for bankruptcy soon). I partly agree with you, but I disagree it was due to iTunes as software, because, quite frankly, iTunes has and still sucks. The iPod succeeded because Apple made sure to have business deals in place with the big dogs of music and to offer individual tracks for (at the time) very cheap prices. You may recall, but CDs were kind of a rip off at that point, and the music industry wanted to charge quite a bit more per track.
The iPhone itself succeeded because Apple coordinated with carrier(s) while requiring certain conditions - no pre-installed apps, and design autonomy. Recently, it's been trying to coordinate with the cable networks to get Apple TV some traction (though I believe they failed). With Apple Pay, it coordinated with all the major credit card carriers. To me, it is that kind of planning that shows Apple's commitment to polish. I could be wrong, but Google seems to be more on the "here's our plan, we'll open it up, and hopefully people (and other corporations) flock to it. But if not...well, we have our bread-and-butter search to subsist on." It's worked with some things, and it hasn't for others. Google Wallet and Google NFC payments may have come out first, but they seem to be dead in the water. But hey, my swiss army knife has more attachments than yours, right?
> but you have to understand that a lot of people are derisive because we've been hearing the Apple faithful railing about these same attributes of competitor devices for months.
My experience is pretty different. I don't really hear the "Apple faithful" very often, short of online journalists. In terms of actual end-users, the Android house seems way more vocal, and usually in two buckets: "we had it way before!" or some kind of flock of sheep comment. Take a visit to r/technology on reddit, and do a search on Apple, then do a search on Android. The negativity is no where near 1:1.
For all that noise, I must cite my favorite tech blog: http://anandtech.com/show/8414/a-month-with-the-iphone-5s/. I believe this is far fairer than most of the vitriol you'll find out there.
As for the watch? I think it looks bulky, just like all the other smartwatches. I'm skeptical about its battery life, which they seemed to have not mentioned. But I gotta admit, the feature set looks pretty polished to me.
However, Apple no longer holds this distinction, there are plenty of competing products that now either meet or exceed the value prop of an iphone. Apple's competitors caught up, and I am having a really hard time buying that the iwatch will be the next ipod/iphone/ipad for Apple. Wearables have already proven to have nearly the lowest customer attention retention(i.e. they win the prize for most likely to end up in a closet a month after purchase, rather then be relied on as a cornerstone of modern life as smartphones are today) index of any consumer electronic and it seems a bad platform to stage a resurgence.
As far as the larger iphone models, welcome to yesteryear, it's now Apple playing catch up.
Defense? Why do I have to defend or explain anything? Are we waving flags? Why do I have to defend the things other people say?
I was specifically replying to the defensive notion that criticisms of Apple have been proven wrong (though they weren't wrong, and this is zero revisionism: The first iPod was a general market failure, and took off two years later), thus they will always be wrong, which is a bit of logical nonsense. The other bit was the "Apple is doing what no one else is doing", but other people are doing it and have been doing it. Here in Canada we've enjoyed extremely prolific NFC use without Apple's involvement.
Apple makes a lot of great products. They yield a lot of success. That does not mean that they are not prone to making mistakes, for proclaiming truths that are self-serving nonsense, and for getting the market wrong. It's worth noting that at the height of Microsoft's success the same "can do no wrong" arguments appeared everywhere.
Outside of that, some people seem to identify their personality with Apple, and they truly seem to project a persecution complex (yes, this is seen on /r/technology. I marvel that you hold it as an example, as it is one place where any criticism of Apple, however deserved and accurate, brings out droves and droves of defenders. It is a cesspool of a sub for that reason). Apple is an enormous company, and is enormously successful, so this "woe are us" bit just grows tiring.
Android on the other hand has had all of these and has been working on various kinds of devices for quite long ( guess fragmentation has a brighter side too ). It does make sense to put it on a watch ( obviously with some design changes ).
A watch is primarily a piece of jewelry. How well it tells the time or does other things is much less important than how fashionable it is. Branding is one of Apple's strong suits, and you can't take that away by adding features as if consumer purchasing decisions are based on some kind of checklist-like RFPs like corporate drones are used to.
The beauty of Android Wear is the absolute simplicity of enabling existing apps to have a Wear interface (http://developer.android.com/training/building-wearables.htm...). Perhaps it will be the same for iOS, but with the explosion of low end Androids in developing countries, my inclination is to think Apple is òn the path to slowly lose this battle.
Apple is approaching this just as much as a piece of jewelry as they are a piece of technology. It should be pretty revealing when it comes out to see it spread through the consumer market. My guess is that once it is out there you can expect people to crave these things more than they did the original iPhone, not due to the technical abilities or feature set but because they want to be the envy of their friends. If the thing is ugly, then it will bomb, but if it takes on the perception of an expensive, luxury watch then expect to see them everywhere.
If the thing looks good I can't even imagine how many of these things they are going to sell next christmas.
Interesting device though. Looks interesting.
I believe Ive refers to the infinite points between the base and the end of the strap and not an infinite length of strap. Ask a mathematician how many points are between 0 and 1.
Even my Casio got this right with a velcro strap. I have a Citizen that is either too high or too low on my forearm depending on the number of links I insert. My only options are to gain or lose weight until
It is, by definition, infinitely adjustable, since the band is sized continuously and attached magnetically (so that any part of the band works as a sizing point). It does not have discrete holes, like most watch bands.
Of course, that's being super pedantic, because 10^31 is practically infinite, or at least more than you'll have time to try in your lifetime.
Turn on your wifi and he's there!
Not actually though. A watch is still a watch. There are so many places where you can't carry or even have the opportunity to use your smart phone to check time. Students can't carry it to exam halls, people who are driving cars, workers, there many professions and use cases where a simple device strapped to your hand is indispensable when it comes to keeping track of time.
Anything you put on your body that is visible to the public affects how people see you. Whether you care about this influences if you think a watch is fashionable or purely functional.
But when it comes to utility. A simple watch has not been replaced by smart phones yet. That is because there are places, instances and people where/who just can't pull out their phones and check time.
But that didn't cover all people and all use cases. There are many use cases where you can't use your phone to check time. And in such places a wrist watch is a indispensable utility.
It is pretty funny how you continue to bring up timekeeping as if you believe that matters.
I would say that it is primarily a piece of jewelery.
Disagree. I've been too lazy to replace the battery of my 12EUR retro Casio watch for a couple weeks now and my girlfriend's getting sick of me asking all the time "what time is it". When I'm walking around outside or when on my bicycle, pulling my phone out of my pocket to check the time is a pain. When I'm in the shower I really want to know the time to the minute cause I know I have to leave the house at exactly 7:30.
or saying a watch is for time keeping is not very forward thinking IMO. Its like saying 10 years ago, a smart phone is just a phone. Less and less people actually use it to make calls and use it more for many of other functionality it provides.
And I know, I know, it's so second-millennium of me to actually want to call my wife, but she doesn't hear the text notifications either, and sometimes I need to figure out whether we already have cinnamon before I buy yet another container of it.
 We do. We now have about six hundred containers of cinnamon, a spice that we use roughly once a year. This appears to be a failure mode of my brain.
This seems similar to those who said that smart phones were for corporate e-mail when the iPhone came out. The iPhone changed the whole purpose of a smartphone.
(I won't comment on the lack of info on battery life and water resistance).
*Edit: changed from water resistant to waterproof.
I really cannot imagine a more useless product than this watch. It requires an iPhone and seems to essentially serve as a small, remote interface for your phone. And how do I navigate that small interface? With an even smaller "digital crown." I hate trying to set the time on my watch, and now they expect me to interact with something more complicated using a tiny, rotating nub?
Imagine a typical scenario. You are walking down the street and suddenly need to navigate somewhere. How many minutes are you going to waste playing with that little nub and resizing things on the screen before finally pulling out your phone and just using that.
The only argument for this watch is that it might be helpful for those times when pulling out your phone is just too onerous. I regret that I do not have the type of lifestyle where that is a serious limitation.
For example, imagine walking down the street towards your destination and feeling the right side of the watch vibrate to signal that you should turn right.
If your watch can communicate contextual information related to your intention and local then it will be superior to (1) wearing a socially inappropriate device like the Google Glass, (2) being called out to by a device, (3) fumbling in your phone in order to then open the correct app.
Apps that correctly use haptic feedback should be able to silently and subtly give users superpowers without forcing them to clumsily interact with a product.
I actually wrote about the benefits of this back in 2012 , though I was talking about phones and notification fatigue back then (and not leveraging Future Interface style stuff.)
Cool watch app? Wait, actually that would be cooler and more usable on a big screen...
Haptic feedback? Agreed, awesome idea, but no reason it can't be on my phone and buzz my leg instead of my wrist.
It's frequently lost upon this crowd (I'm guilty of this myself) that half of the population in the West frequently wears clothes which lack pockets.
"It is not etymologically related to the word male, but in the late 14th century the spelling was altered in English to parallel the spelling of male."
I honestly don't understand how "female" is any worse then "woman" honest question I'm easily the least sexist person you could run into (ask my wife) but sometimes it seems like no mater what you're still going to offend someone. :(
It would be the same as calling someone a "human" rather than a "person". Like aliens do in the movies. Maybe you don't feel that's dehumanizing, but I think a lot of people would.
(Classicist pet peeve: A word's etymology has nothing to do with its modern denotation and connotation.)
Edit: Nevermind. I Googled it. Star Trek alien.
It's clear that they spent a large amount of time and effort with the haptic feedback and the crown.
But functionality wise... well I completely agree with you.
I can't see anything a smartphone cannot do, better and more efficiently, with the exception of the heart rate sensor.
Some functions in particular seem very awkward to me: I cannot see a reasonable way of using it as a phone or an audio player, in public, without bluetooth earphones.
With mobile phones, mp3 players and smartphones the value proposition was clear, but what is the killer application for smartwatches ?
That said, I would be far from surprised if they sell like hotcakes.
There's a much higher density of tactile nerve endings in your wrist than in your thigh; even if you can reliably feel your phone vibrating in your pocket (I can't!), that's no guarantee you'd be able to discriminate finely enough for haptic feedback to be of use, especially since the phone's orientation in your pocket is not guaranteed.
I'm forever feeling my phone vibrate in my pocket when it isn't vibrating... and still manage not to notice when it does vibrate.
Perhaps I would perceive the signal more accurately if it was on my wrist instead of my thigh.
The early adopters of Google Glass have cemented its reputation as a geeky, invasive, awkward, Star Trek like toy for socially inept young men.
None of the people who have approached me directly gave a shit about who I was or what I did for a living. They rarely even introduced themselves. It usually went something like "Is that the google?...." and the conversation goes from there. My IRL experience does not match the blog hatersphere at all.
And just try wearing it in some sensitive areas (e.g night-clubs, expensive restaurants etc) around the world and see what happens...
The incident you're thinking of was Steve Mann being assaulted and thrown out for wearing his own custom digital eye glass, about a year before the Google Glass developer release.
I also haven't heard of frequent incidents involving "sensitive areas". Some incidents, yes, but definitely not enough for me to categorize it as a trend.
I know people theorize about the mark of the beast and cyborgs and privacy but I simply haven't seen it. It's a cool gadget and I have fun wearing it in public. It's also great for hiking and camping and Auto Awesome is the shit, so... you are missing out.
Having a camera pointed in your general direction is enough to give most people pause. I have really bad anxiety, and if someone wearing Glass looks in my direction, I will be made incredibly uncomfortable. It's the kind of thing that makes me want to never leave my house. Not saying you should live your life based on how I feel, but I think people who wear GG should at least be aware of the (great) potential for making others feel uncomfortable.
IF someone wearing google glass looks 180 degrees within your direction and you get anxiety - that's a personal issue. IF Google Glass makes you never want to leave your house - then you live in San Fran when you shouldn't, or you have an irrational fear.
On top of that, for every 1 person that has an irrational fear of Google Glass, there are 99 people who are enthralled by it. So, democracy and all that.
My visceral reaction was that of human disconnect. I hope I am explaining it right, it is a hard feeling to describe. It is the same sort of reaction I get (except stronger) when someone is wearing those bluetooth ear things. It makes me feel uneasy. The person isn't "completely there." A disconnect.
Uh, I think it is too complicated to explain, but it is a human interaction thing, not a technology thing.
Now, if it was the Hard Rock Cafe in Times Square, its probably a stunt. But yes, a bar is not a place for google glass. Just like work is a place for pants. Common sense folks.
Maybe on the east coast.
That's weird, and initially I thought glass was cool. It's not.
I had this experience sitting across a restaurant from someone wearing Google glass, and it made me realize what a horrible idea it is.
This isn't directly tied to you or your argument, but whenever people talk about about smart watches, 'fumbling with your phone' seems to come up. I can't recall the last time I thought of checking my phone as a hassle or felt like I was 'fumbling with it'.
That being said, I am excited to see what developers come up with for smart watches (either platform) and am interested to see how the haptic* feedback performs.
* I know Apple is calling it the Taptic Engine, so I'm not sure if we're supposed to be calling it taptic or haptic feedback, especially since it's not entirely haptic
Reminds me of a joke I heard:
A local school board was trying to find ways to increase the efficiency of their schools. A local computer programmer had come to the board meeting with a proposal.
He suggested that each desk be equipped with a small button, that via wireless technology would light up a small panel on the teachers desk.
That way if a student wanted to ask a question, they could simply press the button which would light up say spot A17 on the panel. Then using a quick lookup sheet the teacher could then see that desk A17 is where John was sitting.
The teacher could then look up quickly and say, "John...you have a question?"
The Software Carpentary workshops that I've worked with/seen, for example, use a post-it note system that signifies that a student has a question (or is done, depending on the colour of the note). This allows the student to continue trying solutions without holding up their hand looking for attention. When an instructor is available, they can go over and help.
The advantage of a button system, then, would be that you could gather data on which students were asking the most questions, how long they generally have to wait, etc.
This would be fine. better than pulling my phone out of my pocket while riding (which is what I do now)
So to take your map scenario. Here's how it currently works for me. Take the phone out, pull up maps, figure out where the hell I am, where I'm trying to get to, and then plot a route between the two.
Yes, that's going to work a whole lot better on a phone.
But what comes next? Following the route from A to B with the phone held flat in front of me like it's some kind of divining rod.
And this is where rethinking the actual interaction starts making a difference. Having the phone push cues instead of walking somewhere I'm unfamiliar with my nice expensive divining rod held out ..
Another gripe, the "digital crown" is on the opposite side of the watch for me. It could be an impediment of being left handed, but having it on the right hand side of the watch increments the awkward factor for me.
"So, it turns out the Apple Watch really works TWO ways. Apple tells us on initial setup, you can choose to have the watch face orient itself for use on the right wrist, making it friendly to lefties. The watch bands are also swappable, so your band isn't facing the wrong way. Good news for everyone involved, but like most things in life, Lefties will still have to deal with a right-handed design -- the crown will be on the bottom of the left side of the watch when on the right wrist."
"Siri, give me walking directions to the nearest Starbucks."
The only thing I can think of that might make me suddenly need to go somewhere is a message/reminder...from my phone.
Zero minutes and five seconds. The watch has Siri. You say "directions to X". Boom. Done.
Once start walking your route, feedback will be given via haptic feedback to let you know which way to turn so you won't have to look at it again.
(Source: the keynote)
Did you ever use a Blackberry? Tiny rotating nubs are really good.
Yeah, it's for the sligltly LESS serious runners, of which there are millions...
How many leave their phone on the house and go out jogging?
Me for one. I run 2x a week for about a half-hour each time in the park near my apartment building. That's about as casual as it gets?
I used to run with my phone, but I recently bought a tiny mp3 player and a Casio wristwatch for running. I don't care about GPS since I know my park, and if someone needs me I'll talk to them in a half hour.
Needing to bring a phone with me makes this watch absolutely a no deal.
Judging by the answers you got, ones who have oversized phones and think that shaving a little weight is worth not being able to call emergencies (who cares, they can use a strangers phone if that happens, just like the guys who cycle and skip tools, patches and pumps and then end up asking people passing them by, and anyway emergencies happen to other people).
OTOH, I don't know why anyone would ever wear a watch after 1993.
1) I like being able to know time and date at a quick glance -- the ease of this is light years ahead of any smartphone.
2) It never runs out of juice since it doesn't have a battery.
3) It looks good (IMO).
4) I irrationally like the fact that my moving about gives life to a tiny beating mechanism. For that reason my watch has a power reserve meter.
Have zero interest in smartwatches though. I have enough crap to keep charged as is.
But yeah, almost purely fashion.
These are nylon belts with a buckle and a small expandable pouch. They also have 2 toggles to attach your race bib too.
They are just big enough to hold your phone, keys and some cash or cards.
You'll see people doing fun runs wear them to avoid carrying a pack for their stuff. To prevent water damage, put your item in a ziplock bag.
It's very inconvenient to run with a phone and almost impossible to play other sports with one.
ME!! I don't want something bulky weighing me down.
But then again, consider that people buy $300+ headphones (Dre's) because of how they look, fashion etc. And they are not even the best headphones out there, whereas this is probably the best smartwatch.
Or that people bought iPods for $300 or more just 6 years ago. Without video or phone or camera. Heck, I bought my first iPod for ~$800 10 years ago (complete with a black and white LCD display).
And that's the 1st gen. In a year, it will be like $200 or $100 for the same thing or the new model.
So, yeah, it might flop or it might sell, but it won't be due to its price.
Fair enough, but i have to say, I feel like i'm taking crazy pills here.
So apple releases it and suddenly it's a fashion item to have a clunky, square watch.
Just a few short months ago, i was reading nytimes articles about the current crop of smartwatches saying "'They’re just not that attractive,' said Mr. Dawson, 'they are all clunky and square'"
But now suddenly it's a fashion item to have a clunky, square watch?
(I understand fashion is fickle, but this is really really fickle :P)
But I have a feeling Porsche has just used an ordinary square panel here, with its edges concealed by the gauge bezel. A watch designer doesn't have room to pull off a visual trick like that.
That said, I've since been reminded about the Moto360 which _did_ have a round screen, so my point is moot anyway.
My impression is that Forerunners have fallen out of favor. The GPS doesn't work all that well compared to a phone (I'm guessing because it lacks the AGPS data a phone has access to). Plus if you're running a marathon you probably want some music to listen to, and it sure is nice to have a phone with you even though it's perhaps a bit heavy.
Moves iPhone 5S - http://imgur.com/kjYf8Tj
Garmin 910XT - http://imgur.com/jnXuaQC
One might look for a higher power setting if you are doing an hour / half hour run and not concerned about keeping battery life up.
Once the almanac is downloaded, the phone's GPS track should look much closer to the Garmin's.
If this was a recurring problem then I don't know what to say, other than it doesn't match my experience with RunKeeper on an iPhone 4S.
That's what RunKeeper recommends, because the AGPS using WLAN-SSIDs lowers the accuracy of the tracking.
Before I put my running stuff on, I turn on the watch and let it figure stuff out while I'm taping my nips, and if it's winter, gloves, tights, mentally bracing myself for the cold, etc.
GPS satellites have a signal strength on par with a night light's, so it's easy to overpower in a small area using a low power transmission.
It's a shame, but the most accurate Forerunners are the older ones–same for Foretrex, etc.–which are often the ones with the shortest battery life.
(I agree with your point though - I have a 910XT for the battery life - the Apple Watch would be useless as an activity tracker for me since the iPhone 5S doesn't really cope with 5h+ activities.)
I think Garmin forerunner will be to the future of wearables what Nomad was to the future of music in 2002.
Existing MP3 players offered a pretty rough user experience; the iPod was a pleasure to use in comparison. Largely the same was true of iPhone as compared to existing smartphones. The first generations of iPod and iPhone also had hardware that was strikingly attractive and even more important, ready for prime time: well able to meet the needs of their software and of the use cases they were designed for. The Apple Watch has lovely fit and finish but looks portly and awkward, and faces serious questions on the basic criterion of battery life. The UI looks promising, but from what there is to see so far it doesn't look as if it's going to blow Android Wear out of the water. (The "digital crown" looks promising, though!)
Moreover, even without a second 5GB of storage or wireless, the iPod had a compelling "value proposition" that was soon clear to everyone, even if it wasn't immediately clear to CmdrTaco: "portable MP3 player that doesn't suck". What's the comparable pitch for the first-gen Apple Watch; what does it offer that feels like a must-have, rather than a nice-to-have, and which you can't do fairly well using your smartphone?
None of this is to say that the Watch is terrible, or will fail, or will never amount to anything. But the CmdrTaco analogy seems clearly inaccurate to me at this stage.
You clearly didn't own one of the first gen of iPod. Amazing as it was, crashes, reformatting and general bugginess were daily occurrences.
What the iPod brought to the table was a (buggy) new interface and click wheel which allowed you to browse your massive collection of pirated MP3's and ripped CD's much easier than other methods. Also form factor/hardware design was more pleasing to the eye to many.
And yes, I do remember the Nomad. At the time the iPod launched, my music player was a Sony Discman and pre-ipod, I would have bought the Nomad in a heartbeat if I could.
I don't think the analogy is very strong even looking at Apple Watch as an exercise watch competitor, though. Firstly, I'm not closely familiar with the recent exercise watch/widgets on the market, but I'd be surprised if all of them are as unpleasant to use as the Nomad was. Second, even if the UX advance is really that big, it seems the (first-generation) aWatch is going to have other stumbling blocks, like the need to own an iPhone 5 or higher and the need to have it with you for GPS. Those aren't just missing checklist ticks or things which will annoy a minority of technically-minded users, they're issues which affect whether "the rest of us" are going to enjoy using the aWatch or bother buying one at all. (Yes, the iPod originally required a Firewire Mac, but precisely for that reason it didn't really take off commercially until that requirement was lifted.) Thirdly, the iPod addressed a huge market, even if many users didn't even realise they were in the market for a portable music player until they heard about the iPod. Even if the aWatch wins over nearly everyone who currently uses an exercise wearable, and also draws in a substantial number of people who don't currently use one (and that's a super-optimistic outcome for as long as an iPhone remains a required accessory) is that really a big enough market to make for a commercial success on the scale of the iPod or iPhone, the kind of scale Apple now needs to keep its investors from being disappointed?
And for showing that you had a lot of money compared to us pauper Nokia users.
People were really disappointed with the lack of MMS, as I recall.
The front runner has GPS so you can get GPS without carrying your phone around. That's great. But what use is that GPS? (seriously, I don't get it- it's a 80s era LCD display).
The Apple watch has GPS (in the phone) but also gives you maps and haptic feedback to send you along your route without ever looking at the watch. I presume the frontrunner doesn't do that (how do you put a route into a watch without a map display?)
Besides, I'm the only runner I know that doesn't bring a phone with me when I run.
And Captain Pedantic has swooped in to inform us that the ridiculously accurate clocks live on the GPS satellites not on the device.
I always run with my phone & wallet for emergency reasons. I don't use a sports watch anymore (I do have a Garmin), but largely due to their bulk & wanting to focus less on my time/pace & more on my body.
I also am getting sick of Verizon getting vendors to lock down Android phones AND forcing phone vendors to toss a bunch of crapware onto the phones. The only reason I haven't switched yet is because I am on a legacy $40/month/line family plan. I am not a huge fan of iOS - I love Google's integrations with its services with Android.
A lot of what I end up doing is taking out my cellphone to check for messages or the time. It's excessive, and quite inconvenient.
Why not one of the existing smartwatches? I haven't yet been convinced that they're built for my desires.
I'm not really in a rush to make a decision here, and likely will wait some before jumping in (probably will try out the Moto 360 in the short term), but the cost isn't really out of the realm of reason necessarily to me.
The Echo is now compatible with several Android phones as well. Given your description, I think you'd really like it.
The reason the initial price is high is because its easier to decrease a retail price than it is to increase it.
If prices do drop (e.g. the 5s) it's because an older product is still being sold alongside a newer one at the standard price.
I'm not saying that they will drop the price of the watch but there is a history of them doing this with the first run of a product. Also someone mentioned they did something similar with the MBA in this thread.
If I am short riding, as in I could walk home, the phone still goes with me. However I see no use for the watch. I have a simple comp on the handlebars, maybe I could stick the watch there?
While I disagree with your premise as the phone is there anyway, I see the watch more as Starbucks wear than anything else.
No matter how Apple markets its products, it's always intended for a broad spectrum of users, which almost excludes the possibility that you'll ever see a Apple product that is specialized for some kind of niche
Even just the swimming would be great, cause the price point and being forced to carry an iPhone around kind of defeated the purpose of buying the Apple Watch for me.
Run, swim, AND bike. Excellent.
But I can definitely vouch for the excellent battery life, resilience to water, and usefulness on a bike laden with sensors.
The only gripe I have is that you can have multiple sets of bike sensors but not anything else. That and their approach to OS X software basically being "well, be grateful you're only 2 years behind the PC and that we acknowledge you at all."
Sadly, it might be outside of my price range. It does look like it's the perfect thing for tracking my workouts, but damn is that one hell of an investment.
Heart monitoring and GPS is a nice to have for me. Seriously, all I need is my old $75 16GB iPod nano 6th generation square.
Did they comment on water resistance? I thought they had a photo of someone pouring water over it...
I would hope they make it waterproof as I don't want to have to leave an expensive watch with my bag on the beach unattended. But then I already have to do that with my phone I guess.
While it's sapphire, I recommend that you keep your watch and phone as far away from salt water and sand as possible. One grain gets in the crown and you could be in trouble.
My sport watch is a Timex which is resistant to 100m, but the springs sometimes get sand stuck in them.
It looks nice though...
People will spend that much money on the Apple Watch. Because it's Apple.It might seem like a ripoff to you but the price was calculated to maximise Apple profit.