Holding Out for the Apple Watch

I wanted to wait until all of the Apple Watch retrospectives have died down before writing this piece. It's been a long wait but I think now is the time to formalise my thoughts on the Watch and spell out exactly why, even if nothing really changed, I'm excited to buy an Apple Watch.1

Reports of the confused nature of the platform, strange hardware decisions and performance sluggishness have plagued the media, yet I have been undeterred—perhaps, having my mind focused on the most crucial aspects of the device have increased my interest. By waiting for the initial reports of the device, I have had time to structure my thoughts about how the device will fit into my life.

I've been going through some drastic lifestyle changes lately. My world has upended and much of the young-adult idleness has been replaced by a torrent of busy work. My profession has a number of specific features that I think lend itself to including the watch into my routine:

  1. Almost every task I need to do, is set to a well paced schedule. Since I am not disciplined in the art of organisation, I need support to become organised and meet my professional goals.
  2. My work is almost entirely mobile. I rarely have opportunities to sit down, so whatever tools I have need to be along for the ride.
  3. Finally, I'll just say that I work in a hostile environment; therefore, taking my smartphone out of my pocket is more-or-less impossible, moreover, the fuss of grabbing my phone would likely cause me to miss something crucial.

The form factor and placement of the Apple Watch is most suitable for relaying the information I need and all without placing undo risk on my other (more expensive) mobile devices. I can quickly glance at my wrist, or feel a tap, informing me that it's time to change tracks. Not revolutionary, but for a job that requires constant movement access to this information hundreds of times over a week will be a god-send.

On the software side, scheduling, timers and notifications are that extra boost I need for organising my day. My attempts at GTD have helped me understand that keeping data, like dates, out of my head and in a trusted system help keep me productive. While I realise there are more possible applications in the future (identity, anyone?), I am more than comfortable with the baked-in software giving back what organisational discipline I lack.

While the watch doesn't solve these issues out with the messianic magic "we" expect from a new technology product in 2016, it can provide utility. I don't want to become too didactic, but some things might just require more forethought to fit into our workflows. I'm glad I gave myself time to consider where this little gem will fit in mine. Maybe, if the computer is the bicycle of the mind, a device like the Apple Watch is a slipper (I suppose in cycling terms it might be a clip in cleat—help?!), it connects you firmly to other tools and makes sure your energy is harnessed more efficiently.


  1. Clearly, this would apply to any wearable device. Without speculating on any radical developments in the future, I think it's safe to say that first-party wearable devices will offer a superior experience and integration. I don't have anything against Android, Pebble and the like, I just own Apple devices. Call out my prejudices, but this is the reality. 

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