Watch

It has been interesting to watch people’s reactions to the Watch these past couple of weeks. Most people seem to have adopted a wait & see stance until the thing comes out, as best seen in this Ben Evans article. This is perfectly logical. The strongest critic has perhaps been Ben Thompson. He seems to think at times that the Watch should be more like the iPod — a focused tightly integrated CE device that leverages the iPhone as the the iPod did iTunes. At other times, he suggests that the Watch can/will be a standalone product that must become a software platform in its own right.

ipod

I would caution against comparing any iOS devices to the iPod. The iPod is a special apple device in one key respect — it was the only device that apple made that was not a platform. It was a self-contained single purpose device that had minimal software. For this reason, it could afford to be a lot more focused and reliant on iTunes for the more complex tasks (eg. creating playlists).

By definition, products that are platforms will seem ill defined in the beginning. This is because they have to be flexible enough to accomodate much more than a few tightly integrated functions. The watch is obviously an extension of the iOS platform, and as such can not afford to be as focused as an iPod. A better comparison is the iPhone itself… except apple has learned from the iPhone. We don’t need to wait to wait 2 years to get an appstore or an SDK or integration with other devices. So why not have these features at 1.0?

Watch apps
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