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Apple Watch and Continuous Computing - Stratechery by Ben Thompson

Stashed in: Virtual Reality!, Smartwatch

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I think the key insight is that very few people need a smartwatch once they already have a smartphone. 

I suspect there will be a bifurcation when it comes to the Watch’s relative importance vis-à-vis the smartphone between developed and developing countries: in the long run I do think that convenience trumps all, but there’s no denying a smartphone is already pretty darn convenient.

To put it another way, if you can afford it there is a sufficient delta between Watch and iPhone functionality to make the former worth owning despite its dependence on the latter. I also think that when the Watch inevitably gains cellular functionality I will carry my iPhone far less than I do today.

Indeed, just as the iPhone makes far more sense as a digital hub than the Mac, the Watch will one day be the best hub yet.

"If you can afford it" is the key phrase. 

The smartwatch is way too expensive to be a necessity for most. 

I'm not sure if I can agree with that. 

Mainframe —> Minicomputer = more dept can afford

Mini —> Desktop = more individuals can afford

Desktop —> Laptops = people can have in more places

Laptops —> Mobile = people can have at all times (yet even more places)

Mobile —> Watch? 

Watch does have even more convenience, as with all previous phases.

Also, the iPhone was pricey at the start and wasn't a necessity then. You could just wait until you get to a desktop to check Facebook or surf the web. If email was the only killer app, then the evolution didn't have to go beyond Blackberry

So far all the watch apps I've seen have had smartphone equivalents.

It's slightly more portable than a smartphone -- no pocket needed -- but it has yet to discover its killerapp, especially given the struggles people have had with its battery life. 

The thing that made smartphone different than desktop is I had it with me all the time.

Unclear what makes the smartwatch different than the smartphone other than no pockets needed. 

It's definitely still early as people are exploring, but my guess is that a killer app / use-case will emerge.

Perhaps something in quantified self? It's better for heart monitoring than a smartphone.

Also the article suggests it might be a better PHONE than a smartphone. Which is kind of interesting.

It allows you to be updated by turning your wrist instead of pulling out your phone. I could see apps changing to notify you of more and more data that you can use in realtime.

Tom, good point. We'll see.

There's still a little bit of chicken and egg here since there aren't presently a lot of Apple Watch owners.

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