It’s not about smartphone addiction. I’ve got an iPhone and I don’t look at it all the time, and when I check it I don’t often get lost in the screen.
It’s not about time. I know the time satisfactorily from my iPhone, computer, and clocks, as well as intuition and the sun.
It’s not about fashion, though it looks great.
The real value of Apple Watch is to integrate apps more closely into our lives.
Apple Watch lets you see messages without taking your phone out. Those messages include pictures, which, though small, are incredibly sharp.
It also lets you reply to messages far more easily. If all that’s needed is a simple response, you can do that with a tap. If you want to convey a reaction, you can do it with three-dimensional emoticons. You can send also simple but beautiful animations and intimate percussive messages.
It makes it even easier to use Siri, which is also far more useful than people realise. The voice assistant can transcribe words and even punctuation, activate apps, and give answers, and it’s only getting better.
It makes Apple Pay even easier, and that, too, is more useful than people realise.
As more and more objects in our world go online, it will offer convenient ways of interacting with them, too. For instance, Apple CEO Tim Cook has said Apple Watch will replace your car keys.
In short, it lets you be connected without holding a device.
Apple Watch tracks how much you move, exercise, and stand. It converts this information into beautifully visualized data and provides tools for analysis as well as guidance for how people can be more healthy.
While there are other fitness trackers on the market, many will choose this one not only because of its unique features, but also for all the other stuff it can do, how it fits into the seamless Apple ecosystem, and how good it looks.
Should you buy it?
In Apple’s world, every Apple product has a place:
- We use MacBooks when working at a table, as keyboards and trackpads remain the standard way of interacting with many apps.
- We use iPhones to access apps on the go.
- We use iPads to access apps when we have time to switch to a bigger device.
- We use Apple Watch to access apps when we don’t want to take out a device at all and can tolerate fewer functions.
Of those products, only MacBook and iPhone are essential. After all, you can replicate every function of an iPad with a MacBook or an iPhone, and you can replicate most of the functions of the Watch with an iPhone or a Fitbit.
But Watch, like iPad, offers better ways of doing many things, and for us innovation-obsessed tech insiders that makes it highly desirable. We’ll buy it if we can afford it — even knowing it isn’t essential and will be surpassed by newer tech soon — and if we choose not to, then we’ll pine after it and consider buying it in the future.
At least that’s the theory. While the Watch seems like it could improve our lives, even an Apple fan must admit that the company could screw up and release a product that doesn’t live up to the hype. For now the jury is still out.
Disclosure: I’m invested in Apple.