How Apple dropped the ball with the Apple Watch

How Apple dropped the ball with the Apple Watch

I'll be the first to admit it: I was looking to Apple to truly define what the smartwatch would end up looking like. I love the design of the Moto 360, Asus ZenWatch and LG G Watch R but I honestly thought that Apple would somehow dictate the look of smartwatches from now on. But instead they produced an awful abomination of ugly that looks worse than the first smartwatches on Android years ago. How did they get it so wrong?

AndroidPIT Apple Watch
The Apple Watch will sell millions, but it's really nowhere near as interesting as I thought it might be. © Apple

When considered against the classy watch faces and clean Android Wear OS, the iWatch, I mean Apple Watch looks childish and cheap in comparison. We can only assume that Apple has been working on this for as long as we've been hearing rumors about it, but the result does not reflect the effort we assume has been put into it. Unless this watch's battery lasts for a week, I don't see how they made something so boring looking just to present a health app like every other one you already have on your phone.

AndroidPIT Apple Watch looks
The many ugly faces of the Apple Watch. © Apple

Where is the revolutionary design? Where is the wow factor feature? Where is that recognizably Apple innovation? It doesn't exist. The Apple Watch is a unremarkable blob of glass with awkwardly placed buttons and knobs and a confusing interface full of dots. Without knowing what's inside, it seems no different to any Android watch around now either, so that doesn't set it apart: it's simply the smartwatch for iPhone owners.

AndroidPIT Apple Watch uses
Tiny dots, tiny Apple TV controls and microscopic photos. Yay. © Apple

That fact alone assures it acceptance and success though. There's a few varieties on offer, from a sports version to an 18-karat gold edition, but even for Apple fans there surely isn't anything here to blow them away. At the very least you can zoom in using the knob, tap it harder to get different actions and use Apple's version of Tap and Pay to make payments with just your smartwatch. This last one is, in my opinion, the only redeeming feature of the device.

AndroidPIT Apple Watch ApplePay
Apple Pay is the one redeeming feature of the Apple Watch in my opinion. © Apple

Keep in mind that HTC reportedly abandoned their smartwatch efforts because they couldn't produce anything impressive enough to justify its existence on the already pretty unimpressive market. This is a wise move: let other OEMs make early generation mistakes and learn from market feedback. Apple could have done the same but instead they produced a watch that looks like it should have been out a year ago with a health function you can already get, that will cost an arm and a leg while it brings decidedly zero to the table.

What do you think of the Apple Watch? Are Android Wear watches any better?

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  • Thaddeus Sturzaker Mar 13, 2015 Link to comment

    It still looks like a iPod nano on a strap every time I look at it. And for the price its just a rip off.

  • ljhaye Oct 19, 2014 Link to comment

    I hope android wear and and rio OEM's ignore Apple watch and instead focus on what's best for the android ecosystem. We can and should take the lead in wearable, apple is fashionistas android is for those who want more creativity in their products .

  • Craig J. Sep 24, 2014 Link to comment

    Who wears a watch anymore?

    • Kris Carlon Sep 24, 2014 Link to comment

      Well it's a 50 billion dollar industry so I'm guessing a few people. And smartwatches are projected to account for 10 billion dollars worth of sales over the next five years.

  • Kris Carlon Sep 12, 2014 Link to comment

    I think if the Apple Watch had followed the styling of the iPhone 6 and wasn't so bulky it might have looked OK.

    I still want to know if Apple managed to work some battery magic into their effort, although I kinda doubt it.

  • CJ Brown Sep 12, 2014 Link to comment

    I applaud HTC for doing the right thing (I'd rather HTC invest the time by entering the phablet / tablet market). None of these Smart Watches looks appealing to me (as for build? Platinum over Gold, but Kevlar / Titanium preferred) !

  • Mark R. Sep 11, 2014 Link to comment


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  • CJ Brown Sep 11, 2014 Link to comment

    Apple Cult Consumers will buy anythjng from Apple (even if its utter crap - like this iWatch - a shame as I expect Apple to continue their impressive build quality and I don't see it on the iWatch) .....

    For the record? I don't wear a watch, I'm not interested in any Smart Watch, but if their development improves Tablets - Phablets - Smart Phones? Then all the better (with regards to future tech) ...

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  • william koffke Sep 11, 2014 Link to comment

    The tech companies just don't get WATCH because they all tell time with their cell phones. A watch is not a phone first! If it isn't a good watch first, I'll keep my LG G2 in my belt holster and wear my $50 Casio (good to 33 atm. ).

    Maybe Apple had a bunch of Micro iPod cases they couldn't use?

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  • Saem Sarguroh Sep 11, 2014 Link to comment

    I just prefer a decent watch which looks like a watch and not a brick tied by a band. Also it should have good battery life and an IR blaster.

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    Deactivated Account Sep 10, 2014 Link to comment

    At this point I remain unconvinced anything made by Apple could enhance my life for the better, in any way what so ever. Their watch looks like nothing particularly special, likewise their phones. Android for me thanks, in my case that is Motorola. I'd rather have a Moto 360 than an Apple watch. Likewise logos, I much prefer Andy Droid to a partially chewed apple. Sorry, but you've got nothing that appeals to me Apple!

  • Greg Sep 10, 2014 Link to comment

    You might be able to use the NFC in the watch for payments, but the fingerprint sensor is still in the phone. So you still need to take out your phone, scan your finger on one hand while holding the other hand to the NFC reader. Just imagine it, feels very stylish

  • Bill Carter Sep 10, 2014 Link to comment

    My boss is a moderate Apple fan. But, I can't imagine him giving up his Tag for an Apple Watch. In any case, he wears his watch on the wrong wrist (right) meaning that the crown is facing up his forearm instead of towards his hand.

    That doesn't matter on a real watch, but since Apple decided that the crown was to be the method of control for the watch, he would have to get used to wearing his watch on his left wrist. If you adjust the crown, on your left wrist, your hand covers the face of the watch.

    Since he's fifty years old, I doubt he's going to want to do that, so he'll probably just give it a miss.

    In fact, I really can't see many people who are going to be enticed by this or any other 'smart watch'.

    We'll see.

  • Wallace Marques Sep 10, 2014 Link to comment

    I think both moto 360, LG G watch, and gear solo are much better.

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  • avn Sep 10, 2014 Link to comment


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