All of a sudden, we are obsessed with watches. It started with those images of former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell and his Rolex. You know, the one that Jonnie Williams gave to Maureen, who then gave to Bob, who wore it proudly—until the Feds took it away, and it became evidence in his corruption trial.
Now comes the Apple Watch, or should I say the “ideation” of an Apple Watch. It’s not here yet. All we know is that it will be available in early 2015. Its arrival must really be up in the air for Apple to pass up the holiday shopping season, but I suspect sales of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus will be brisk enough to make stockholders happy.
Besides, Apple may have accomplished everything it wanted to do by simply teasing us with the simulacrum of a watch. Just a hint of what’s to come had everyone gushing. Time magazine ran a cover story this week, pointing out that Apple is brilliant at reinventing consumer product categories and making us desire things we ordinarily wouldn’t buy. The Apple Watch may very well be that next category, similar to the first iPods and iPads.
Remember when it was trendy to have an iPad? You’d walk into a meeting and some early adopter would be sitting there with his brand-new iPad propped up on its case, scrolling through emails or typing on a keyboard attachment. Get ready for the same thing all over again!
So for now, we wait for the $349 watch that we really don’t need.
Speaking of things we probably don’t need, here are some random thoughts I jotted down last week while watching Apple’s Big Event (on my iMac of course):
- A live feed that wasn’t live. Based on comments I saw on Twitter, I wasn’t the only one who was disturbed by Apple’s bungling of its own live streaming of the event. The feed kept cutting out, and a translator’s voice was competing with Tim Cook’s voice. It didn’t seem like a good omen when the world’s largest tech company couldn’t get its technology right.
- Apple nomenclature. How does Apple name things? I would have thought the new watch would be called the iWatch since we have the iPhone, iPad and iPod. According to Fast Company, there is already an iSwatch. Perhaps to close to iWatch?
- Bigger and bigger iPhones. At the rate we’re going, the iPhone will soon be the same size as an iPad Mini (7.9”). Cook will then proclaim that this “new” device is faster, thinner and larger than ever before! At which point, the iPad Mini will be quietly phased out.
- Apple socks and underwear. You saw it here first, folks. By weaving tiny sensors and chips into specially designed undergarments, Apple will take wearable technology to a new level. Brightly colored socks will make a fashion statement while diagnosing your running form, and extending the battery life of your Apple Watch and Apple Earrings (coming in 2016!).
- U2 performance and free album. I suppose if I were in the auditorium and got to see U2 live, I’d be pumped. But the whole spectacle seemed overblown to me, especially when Bono and Cook announced that U2’s latest album would be available for free to iTunes’ 500 million account holders in just FIVE seconds. Okay, you did it. But we didn’t ask for it, and I wouldn’t say it’s U2’s greatest work.
- Apple wins! The very fact that I’m writing this proves that Apple is winning on the PR front. As MarketWatch noted last week, Apple analysts were giddy, describing the unveiling as “magical,” and stock pickers gave Apple a solid thumbs up. The Apple mystique is alive and well.
All right, I admit it, I do look forward to seeing the new iPhones.