As I think about answers to that question, it leads me to the conclusion that Jony Ive and crew aren’t looking solely at the wrist. Wearable technology could take cues from other kinds of jewelry: rings and necklaces, for example.
What if Apple’s entry into this space is a ring?
Limited display — A discreet way to provide notifications—just an LED or two that indicate what’s happening on your iPhone. Maybe even a small, flexible E Ink display for high contrast text.
-Craig Hockenberry, “Wearing Apple”, furbo.org
I have read a lot about the possibly forthcoming Apple wearable device, but I have never believed that it will be a watch in the conventional sense, mainly if not solely based on the fact that watches are boring and conventional, things with which Apple doesn’t generally get involved and things in which most teenagers are not interested. In addition, I have always tried to refer to it in conversation as “the possibly forthcoming Apple wearable device”, so as not to add fuel to the “watch” fire. However, Apple has tended to redefine categories as we know them, which is why in reading last week’s post by Ben Thompson and this one, I realized that I was nodding my head the entire time.
I don’t necessary expect the Apple wearable technology to be a ring, but it is definitely not going to be anything like the competitors entries. I have said for awhile (mainly to my wife since my brief foray with unemployment) that anything that has a health focus will have little to no screen real estate, especially if it is meant to be something that is invisible but does a lot, has absurdly long battery life, and merely communicates information with other Apple devices. Given the recent patent filing from Apple surrounding flexible batteries, I wouldn’t be surprised if Apple’s entry reminds us more of “LiveStrong” bracelets than watches.
Posted: March 18, 2014