The Future of the Apple Watch

Where I see the Apple Watch in a year or two

From the beginning

I’ve been wearing the Apple Watch Series 1 since it’s initial release, I’ve pretty much worn it everyday since then. No seriously I can probably count on one hand how many days I’ve not worn it.

The hype for me was all about all the apps Apple promoted prior to the launch e.g. Strava, Shazam, Golf apps etc. These apps looked great when looking at screenshots and reading about features but when it came down to business these apps were either limited in features or weren’t even built.

I was also looking forward to how you could easily send your friends messages from your wrist…It turns out that Apple is just really really good at marketing because to be honest i’ve used that feature once and it was probably to show friends how to draw rude pictures.

“It turns out that Apple is just really good at marketing”

After a year of convincing my friends and family to buy one and wearing the thing I had learnt it’s true value[for me at least], notifications, health/activity monitoring and Siri. Yes I paid X amount of dollars to have notifications silently pushed to my wrist. Don’t judge me!

Where are we at now?

Apple last year released The Series 2 which fixed a lot of core issues including it’s major flaw, speed but i’m not here to chat hardware as I think for a watch, battery life and speed/responsiveness are the only things that matter…for consumers at least.

Series 2 in a nutshell: Built in GPS, 50m water resistence, brighter screen and more processors.

Apple also recently announced at WWDC 2017 it’s 4th version of watchOS. It was clear (to me) from this preview where Apple is taking it’s wearable.

WatchOS 4 features where, 50% activity based, 25% music based and 25% Siri based. I’m sure there are other updates that speed up Apps or let you draw more rude pictures but I wont go into those.

So after 2 years we’ve had 4 revisions of watchOS and 1 major hardware update — the Series 2. Not the most rapid product cycle but it’s progress!

How I use my watch currently

After 2 years of using this device I can tell you the features I use on a daily basis are:

  • Notifications
    I honestly use my iPhone less becuase of these simple, glanceable notifications. Which in turn lets me spend more time in the moment (cheesy I know)
  • Activity App
    I’m into boxing and running so I use this feature a lot. It’s simple, easy to use and I rely on it to help me with things like running pace and heart rate monitoring for recoveries.
    - There’s also Strava but I find myself use that less as Apples own Activity app evolves.
  • Siri
    People really underestimate the power of Siri, I think it’s because Apple doesn’t really promote the boring features that normal people use and also people just don’t like speaking to their watch in public.
    I use Siri on my watch more than my phone to create new reminders, start timers (set a timer for 30mins — because I need to do the washing), play music or call my wife while driving. Try it, it’s great!
“You’d be surprised how quickly you begin to rely on these relatively simple features.”

Of course I occasionally use other features like Apple Pay (weird in public) and messages but barely and only when I’m bored. The 3 features mentioned above however are used everyday.

The Future of the watch

You’re probably thinking cool so your a fanboy and you like your watch but where do you see this peice of tech in 2–3 years…First of all, yes I am a fanboy and secondly let me finish this post…

I think what we will see first is over the next year, apps that already exist begin to disappear. I’ve already seen mutliple companies remove Apple Watch support and I expect this to continue.

“Twitter hasn’t been updated since it’s launch”

Within 2 years I doubt anyone will be using apps on their watch. Sure it will support them but most likely via Siri.

Over the next 2 years Apple will begin to see that change and continue to improve its stock apps and UI/UX. Trust me it’s for the best.

I can’t guarantee it but fingers crossed there will be some kind of battery revolution. This needs to happen (and soon) in order for the watch to become the ultimate device as it will allow continuous usage. I don’t expect a huge improvement but we need to be able to wear the watch for longer than 24 hours.

Apple will likely continue to partner with health industries using the watch to improve or diagnose health issues. This will lead to more sensors being required like skin temperature, galvanic skin response and ambient temperature sensors. #DataNerd.

What about apps? Didn’t Apple say they are the future?

Even the big guys get things wrong. I honestly think Siri is the future for apps to succeed on Apple’s Watch.

Let me know in the comments how your’re using your watch or if you have any further thoughts on where this tech is heading!

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