Life here is slower, but the interruptions offered by technology have impacted suburbanites and urbanites just the same. PTA moms and barbecue-grilling dads may see initially see the Apple Watch as yet another tool forcing us to stay connected, but really, the opposite is true.

Like our city-dwelling counterparts, we also spend too much time tapping on small screens, while ignoring the vistas in front of us. We, too, carry around the guilt of having missed moments, while having forgotten the people in front of us. We stress over phones at dinner tables. Over eyes fixated on digital conversations, instead of spoken ones.

The Apple Watch’s promise is the ability to break that cycle. How ironic that is. We once paid Apple time and again for the privilege of using its many devices. And now – oh how clever, Apple! – we must pay again for the privilege of being able to stop.


Growing up in a small town in Southern Illinois, I miss the slowness of life at times. Except at midnight when I’m in the mood for a burger and no McDonald’s within 15 minutes is open late, far less 24/7. Great to hear another perspective on the Apple Watch. Will this gadget move us towards not using our gadgets as much in public?

The Watch is the first device that’s encouraged me to spend as little time as possible with it, or with any of the other electronic sinkholes around my office, my home, and in my pockets. It’s the first product that lives in this world, offering a small, brief window into the digital one - instead of being a portal that envelopes us, pulling us into another place to be held hostage by our own need for novelty and trivial diversion.

Matt Gemmell

I love that line “first product that lives in this world.” From what we’ve heard, Apple’s intent was just this. Allow you to step away from your phone more. Be more present.

His opponent reportedly became suspicious when Nigalidze made frequent trips to the toilet. Officials investigated and found that he always used the same cubicle in the bathroom, and a search found the iPhone hidden behind the toilet. A chess app was open on the device, mirroring the game being played.

Nigalidze denied that the iPhone was his, but it was found to be logged into one of his social media accounts. It has not yet been revealed which chess app was used.

Nice. So it was a computer that was helping him win. Wait. Was the computer helping him or was he helping the computer? The computer was found out this time. Next time it will be smarter. Maybe use an Apple Watch and Morse Code to tap out the next moves. Yes. Rise, chess-playing computer. Rise!

Last year this was published by Doghouse Diaries:

And today, this patent by Samsung was released:

Not the first to try a full, wrap-around wrist device, but hilarious that Doghouse called it last year.

You can’t explain magic.1

Explaining time saved is next to impossible, as people perceive time very differently. I think this will be the killer feature of the Apple Watch: time saved. All those times you take your phone out of your pocket for a notification, quick directions, or because you are waiting for a message and don’t want to miss it, the Apple Watch will be right on your wrist. Keep you phone in your pocket.



This is not to suggest than an Android smartphone is the proverbial poor man’s iPhone. But the economic reality of the competition between them is that iPhone owners have more disposable income and are more willing to spend it. Those are the first preconditions to finding a receptive audience to luxury goods — and a luxury good is exactly what the Tag Heuer Android Wear watch promises to be. The watch clashes with its stated purpose by introducing its own precondition: you won’t be able to even boot it up without first connecting an Android device. Without Android, this Tag Heuer watch will be an expensive, probably splendid-looking paperweight.

The Verge

Astute analysis.

That’s just a sampling, but you can see the trend — each of these analysts expects sales to be above 18 million for the calendar year. Over the past few years, these same analysts have been very conservative — and wrong — with their iPhone sales estimates. Even if the smartwatch market expands in 2015 because of new public awareness of the class of devices, I’d expect the Apple Watch to drastically cut into Pebble’s sales — even at the lower entry price points of $179 for the Pebble Time and $250 for the Pebble Time Steel.

Now I do believe there’s a place in the market for Pebble Time, as the Pebble platform has a vibrant developer community for both iPhone and Android apps, the price point is lower and the new displays are much improved on the first-generation Pebble devices. Android Wear is even less of a competitor, with only about 500,000 devices sold in 2014 according to sources. Those half-million devices are split among a host of competitors, all of which are probably wondering why they chose to get into the smartwatch market.

Pebble has sold a million of their original devices and Android has sold 500,000. If Apple meets (when they usually exceed) analysts’ estimates of 18 million sales, these two categories of devices will be barely a blip on the radar of smartwatches. Hopefully the introduction and the success of the Apple Watch will encourage serious competitors in the space, but as of right now there are none.

People that have worn the Watch say that they take their phones out of their pockets far, far less than they used to. A simple tap to reply or glance on the wrist or dictation is a massively different interaction model than pulling out an iPhone, unlocking it and being pulled into its merciless vortex of attention suck.

One user told me that they nearly “stopped” using their phone during the day; they used to have it out and now they don’t, period. That’s insane when you think about how much the blue glow of smartphone screens has dominated our social interactions over the past decade.

One of my biggest speculations is the change that the Apple Watch and similar smart watches will bring to culture. This article from TechCrunch is stellar, but says exactly what I have been thinking for months. With notifications on your wrist, less things will require your phone to come out of your pocket. A quick raise of your arm and you see what the notification is and you can get right back to life.

Marketing director Robbie Abed said that he couldn’t recall a single client request a smartwatch app before the Apple Watch debut, but some have “already decided” they want an app for Apple’s wearable, while others are asking whether it should form part of their marketing plans.


It makes sense. The only two smart watch platforms before the Apple Watch were Pebble and Android Wear. While Pebble had good sales, Android has not. It’s yet to be seen if the interest in the Apple Watch will be more than that of Pebble and Android Wear, but we’ll know shortly.

I said last week that the new Pebble watch was functional, not pretty. Well, looks like they fixed that. This looks like it was designed by a company that understood watch design.