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What’s the Apple Watch Good For?

What s the Apple Watch Good For MIT Technology Review


The Apple Watch might seem like a computer that resides on your wrist, but technically that isn’t the case. Apps that run on it are actually just extensions of iOS apps that run on an iPhone; they use the watch as an auxiliary display. This encourages developers to exploit the device as a kind of remote control for their existing iOS apps, and imagine the UX accordingly.

“You’re not allowed to run code on the watch at all,” says William Van Hecke, user experience lead at the Omni Group, a productivity software vendor that’s developing apps for the Apple Watch.

According to Van Hecke, any app that already emphasizes this kind of “one-bit interaction”—that is, a simple choice to confirm or dismiss information—will translate easily to the Apple Watch. “Nobody will ever expect the [watch] app to reproduce the [iPhone app’s] whole functionality, which is liberating,” he says. Many of the new device’s first-wave apps will most likely exploit what Van Hecke calls the “window on your wrist” by delivering notifications and offering simple interactions.

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Pandas! It's good for looking at pics of pandas!!

And notifications too I suppose.

Despite a raft of existing smart watches from companies including Samsung, Motorola, and Pebble, wearable technology has resisted mainstream appeal, partly because the devices don’t feel particularly useful (see “So Far, Smart Watches Are Pretty Dumb”).+

The advance marketing for the Apple Watch has done little to explain why this product will fare better, but the tools (WatchKit ) and documentation ( Human Interface Guidelines) released for app developers provides some clues. They suggest a simple, intuitive mode of interaction centered on streamlined alerts. If the market influence of the iPhone and iPad are any indication, the user experience patterns that Apple establishes may come to define what all smart watches are “for” in eyes of their users.

But pandas! Pandas are the killerapp!!

Wow, they are expected to sell 20 million in their first year:

A new research report Tuesday pegged as many as 20 million in the first year. CCS Insight says this will make the Apple Watch, out in April, "the most successful smartwatch ever."

That's not saying much, as the watches that have come out to date have yet to catch a break with consumers.

Pebble, the first smartwatch to launch, says it has sold 1 million copies in its two years on the market, while watches from Samsung Electronics and LG under the "Android Wear" banner sold just 720,000 units in 2014, according to researcher Canalys.


Apple watch revenue will likely be dominated by the expensive hold edition:

Apple Watch Revenue Will Likely Be Dominated by Expensive Gold Edition - PandaWhale

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