The Struggle To Justify the Expense and Trouble of Apple Watch

by • May 26, 2015 • Comments (0)



A lesson personally learned long ago is that you never have a second chance to make a first impression.

This comes to mind as I write this first piece for Mobile Leaders Alliance.

But I can’t help myself.

Of all the supposed benefits of Apple Watch that have been thrown out there, the one that is the biggest “really?” was offered by Annie-Rose Strasser, a BuzzFeed News Reporter, in an article titled “The Apple Watch Is Surprisingly Great For Women”.

“Since I put it on a week ago, “ she wrote, “the time I’ve spent dredging up my phone, tossing receipts and hand lotion on the ground in the process, has dropped dramatically.”

Ah, Apple Watch is the product to prevent lotion spillage.

I don’t carry a purse or a murse (one of my all-time favorite terms), so I just may not get it. Or maybe I’m sexist.

I prefer to think that I’m just calling it as I see it.

I’ve had my Apple Watch for 2 ½ weeks and have struggled to justify the expense and, frankly, the trouble.

I’ve received notifications at inappropriate times (The You Did It! one that I received at a urinal comes to mind), requests that fail to take into account place (like the one asking me to stand as I’m driving), and the admonishment for not accomplishing a supposed activity goal in a week where I did cardio work six times in my house and went to the gym to use machines three other times.

And this doesn’t take into account one of my biggest problems with Apple Watch – the user experience isn’t intuitive. That forces you to either seek out and read a long user guide or muddle through wondering when is the moment for the ballyhooed Force Touch, a swipe to the left, or a click or two or three of the newly-introduced-to-us Digital Crown.

I also deem the information on my wrist to either be redundant or at most in the “nice to know” category. We’ve repeatedly said that our smartphones are within four feet of us nearly 24 hours a day. So it’s not like the Apple Watch has opened up a view on the world that has been missing or inaccessible.

But writing on Twitter, Andreessen Horowitz partner Benedict Evans opined on those like me who question Apple Watch’s value.

“Asking about the use case for a smart watch is like asking why you have lamps instead of a single fluorescent tube in each room if your home,” Evans wrote in the first of two tweets.

His follow-up read this way, “If we only bought things we needed, with clear use cases, we’d live in capsule hotels, drink water and wear nothing but overalls.”

That leaves us where? Surely a consumer needs a motivator to shell out $349 or more for something many consider superfluous.

Maybe that’s fashion. Or the cool factor. Or something else.

Or maybe this is a product that won’t make it in a big way.

Time will tell.


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