Smartwatches: A go or no go?
With Apple’s announcement of the “Apple Watch” launch and having dominated the 2014 Consumer Electronic Show, everyone is wondering whether this hype of having a smartwatch will really take hold of the crowd or not. After all, Apple is not the first to create such a product.
Indeed companies such as Samsung have already introduced their own line “Samsung Gear”, with their newest soon-to-be-launched product being the Gear S. The Gear S will be equipped with 3G, Wi-fi and Bluetooth connectivity allowing you to make/receive calls and messages when you are not close to your phone, will have an onscreen keyboard, a schedule, a weather report, a health track, a music player, and to top it off, a personal fitness monitor.
Motorola introduced their own smartwatch this summer, the Moto 360. Beginning sales on the 5th of September this year it claimed on Twitter it had “sold out” in the U.S within the day. And LG isn’t far behind.
The new Apple Watch (launch in 2015) comes with a sapphire display, wireless charging, a built-in mobile payment system (Apple Pay) and it works as a fitness tracker too – with a motion sensor and heart-rate monitor to track movement and activity. You can choose your own easily removable band and personalize your Apple Watch over two million ways.
So, will smartwatches be the next big thing?
Many believe what will drive the smart watch market is simply the apps that will be available on the actual watch. Sony’s SmartWatch Universal IM app for example allows you to receive notifications from Facebook Messenger, Skype, Whatsapp, and Google Voice. Apple’s watch brings in a completely new feature, it allows for easy and quick payments, no need for a wallet anymore. If the product is further developed customers might gain an interest in purchasing.
Ustwo visual designer Shaun Tollerton said: “Wearable is going to take off. In fact, it already did, but it reminds me of when 3D took off. Once the gimmick and hype wears off we can focus on creating functionality that can truly benefit our lives.”
Why might it fail?
It could simply fail because smart-watches were introduced when everyone simply began giving up on wearing a watch. As smartphones became popular, more and more people began looking at their phone for the time, so why need a watch at all? Other people simply believe that the product is still too expensive, ranging from $150-$350, and the battery life is too short.
Jan Dawson, chief analyst at Jackdaw stated in an interview that “market growth and the overall revenue opportunity remain poor for smartwatches” and “we would advise most would-be vendors to stay out of the market,” he says, while saying that those who continue should aim to be cross-platform, working with Android and Apple’s iOS.
But what do you think? Will the Smart-watch apps be the main drive of this product in the future? Is it too early to tell or will this become a product which will suffer a high abandonment risk?
Sources & interesting things to see/read:
Apple Watch impression: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nxM-rac7vb4