Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Why Your Smartwatch Sucks

I have been interested in the idea of so called smartwatches for awhile now. It seems like it is an interesting idea, though I'm still not sure if I'll ever get one. I was really interested to see what Samsung would release today with it's Galaxy Gear. Unfortunately, I am yet again disappointed.

The reason? It's not a smartwatch. It's a dumbwatch. It pretty much doesn't do anything unless it has a smartphone next to it. It's an external monitor for you phone. As if that isn't bad enough, it currently only works with 1 phone and a tablet.

I've heard suggestions that perhaps some features of a phone could be more convenient in watch form just as some things are more pleasant on phones and tablets than on desktops. It wasn't a replacement, rather a supplement. I could get behind that, but if it can't do anything on it's own, without the phone, it loses like 99.5% of it's appeal. If your phone or tablet had to be tethered to a laptop or desktop, it would be useless.

I'd think a huge part of the appeal of a smartwatch would be the fitness stuff. I know my wife doesn't really like using her phone because it is too big for running. She likes her Garmin watch better. If you have to take a 5.7 inch phone with you, what good is the watch? Sure there is a slight bonus to just putting a phone in your pocket instead of on your arm and using the watch to check stuff, but man it feels like this is missing the point.

I don't need an external monitor for my phone. Perhaps checking emails or texts on the watch might be ok, but I suspect the screen is going to be too small to really enjoy that. Replying is generally a pretty important part of texts and emails, and I'm certain I don't want to do that on a watch. The watch has to do something on it's own without the phone. If it doesn't, it's going to be a really hard sell for most people I think. I might be interested in your smartwatch. Good luck trying to sell me on your dumbwatch.

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1 comment:

  1. I'm glad that I am not alone in this. I wrote a pretty lengthy article that explains why ‘smartwatches’ do not make sense and what I expect from a true watch phone. With the advent of the Neptune Pine and Omate TrueSmart, it seems some companies are finally getting the point, but they still have some issues to fix before these things will become truly practical.