Mobile execs predict Apple Watch to dominate smartwatch market for foreseeable future

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited March 2015
A number of mobile executives who attended this week's Mobile World Congress in Barcelona are already projecting that the Apple Watch will dominate the smartwatch market when it launches in April, much as the iPad currently controls the tablet industry.




The Information's Amir Efrati notes that "almost every" executive he spoke to at MWC was anticipating Apple to assume control of the smartwatch market and keep hold that position for a long time.

"The vertical model is just fundamentally better to introduce new product categories," said one executive with a company making an Android watch.

The comment is a reference to Apple's tightly-integrated and often closed ecosystem. iPhone owners may be more likely to buy an Apple Watch, even if Google does bring Android Wear support to iOS, simply because it's woven into the Apple ecosystem.

This could potentially backfire for Apple, since the Watch market can never grow larger than the pool of iPhone owners, at least with the device's current capabilities. The first-generation Apple Watch relies on iPhone for features like GPS navigation and cellular data transmission

ARM and Qualcomm executives also remarked that the Apple Watch too closely resembles a "gadget," and that many people may prefer devices that resemble conventional watches. Products like the Moto 360 and LG Watch Urbane are consciously designed with round faces, among other traditional touches.

Apple is working hard to overcome any stigmas by marketing the Watch as a fashion accessory, and offering traditional elements where it can. These include a crown dial, a variety of different straps, and gold case options on the most expensive Edition models.

Full details about the product are expected to be announced at a March 9th press event in San Francisco. AppleInsider will be providing live coverage.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 68
    hillstoneshillstones Posts: 1,490member
    Is there really a smart watch market to dominate? Has anyone ever seen anybody wear a smart watch that is currently on the market? I see a very small number of fit bits, but no watches. Millions of smart phone owners, but none of them wear a smart watch. If there was a market, you would see people wearing them now, from the vendors that sell them.

    "The first-generation Apple Watch relies on iPhone for features like GPS navigation and cellular data transmission"....and everything else to function. It is a $349 brick without the iPhone. I don't know why people would want a smart watch, from any vendor.
  • Reply 2 of 68
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,360member

    Since the industry sold a total of 57 Android smart watches for the entire fiscal year of 2014, I'd say that the prediction that Apple will dominate smart watches for the forseeable future is a pretty safe prediction to make.

  • Reply 3 of 68
    ingelaingela Posts: 217member
    The round faces of Android smart-watches will stigmatize Androidwear for quite a while. They look like ridiculous Kmart Dad Watches. A look that could only appeal to geekiest of geeks. Why anybody would think round was the way to go, I will never know. But I do know that they will be heavily discounted for the holiday season to try and get rid of them.

    Form follows function. That's the number one rule of design. Not make it look like something it's not because we think so poorly of the intelligence of our consumer.
  • Reply 4 of 68
    Quote:

    ARM and Qualcomm executives also remarked that the Apple Watch too closely resembles a "gadget," and that many people may prefer devices that resemble conventional watches. Products like the Moto 360 and LG Watch Urbane are consciously designed with round faces, among other traditional touches. 


     

    Here, let me modify this to seem as though it had been said in 2007.

     

    Quote:

     "Blackberry and Nokia executives also remarked that the iPhone too closely resembles a child's toy, and that many people may prefer smartphones that have keypads and keyboards. Products like the Blackberry and Nokia phones are consciously designed with physical buttons, among other traditional touches."


     

     

    That's how ridiculous the cries for "it haz to b3 round!" are.

  • Reply 5 of 68
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Ingela View Post



    The round faces of Android smart-watches will stigmatize Androidwear for quite a while. They look like ridiculous Kmart Dad Watches. A look that could only appeal to geekiest of geeks. Why anybody would think round was the way to go, I will never know. But I do know that they will be heavily discounted for the holiday season to try and get rid of them.



    Form follows function. That's the number one rule of design. Not make it look like something it's not because we think so poorly of the intelligence of our consumer.

     

     

    I think you've got your shapes mixed up. 

     

    The rectangular Apple Watch says geeky calculator watch/gadget boy; the round watch says traditional elegant.

     

    Note that whenever Apple portrays a skeuomorphic analogue watch face, it chooses a round one. I rest my case.

  • Reply 6 of 68
    hillstones wrote: »
    Is there really a smart watch market to dominate? Has anyone ever seen anybody wear a smart watch that is currently on the market? I see a very small number of fit bits, but no watches. Millions of smart phone owners, but none of them wear a smart watch. If there was a market, you would see people wearing them now, from the vendors that sell them.

    "The first-generation Apple Watch relies on iPhone for features like GPS navigation and cellular data transmission"....and everything else to function. It is a $349 brick without the iPhone. I don't know why people would want a smart watch, from any vendor.

    The global smartphone market was a fraction of its current size when Apple entered the market in 2007. I remember that ordinary people didn't have much use for smartphones--just business users with Blackberries and Palm Treos, and tech geeks carrying Windows Mobile PDA bricks.

    You need to take the long view on wearables. Apple is skating to where the puck is going to be, not where it was. If Apple waited until the wearable market was more mature, they'd be climbing uphill instead of defining what people expected from wearables.
  • Reply 7 of 68
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Ingela View Post



    Form follows function. That's the number one rule of design. 

    Which is why it is 12.68 mm thick (exactly 1/2")

     

    You have to put the battery someplace.

  • Reply 8 of 68
    clemynxclemynx Posts: 1,509member

    I think you've got your shapes mixed up. 

    The rectangular Apple Watch says geeky calculator watch/gadget boy; the round watch says traditional elegant.

    Note that whenever Apple portrays a skeuomorphic analogue watch face, it chooses a round one. I rest my case.

    A round watch face isn't skeuomorphic. Simply because a round to represent a cycle is extremely logical and it works even for software interfaces. The round has a purpose that's beyond just being an ornament.
  • Reply 9 of 68
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member

    I think you've got your shapes mixed up. 

    The rectangular Apple Watch says geeky calculator watch/gadget boy; the round watch says traditional elegant.

    Note that whenever Apple portrays a skeuomorphic analogue watch face, it chooses a round one. I rest my case.

    Then just buy a traditional watch. :rolleyes: of course an analog watch face is going to be round. ?Watch displays a lot more than just analog watch faces. :rolleyes:
  • Reply 10 of 68
    ingelaingela Posts: 217member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Benjamin Frost View Post

     

     

     

    I think you've got your shapes mixed up. 

     

    The rectangular Apple Watch says geeky calculator watch/gadget boy; the round watch says traditional elegant.

     

    Note that whenever Apple portrays a skeuomorphic analogue watch face, it chooses a round one. I rest my case.


     

     Its really not even a "watch".

    If it had a movement that spins in a circular manner with numbers or symbols around the perimeter for the primary function of time keeping, then round makes sense.  Why make it look like something it's not? The round ones are embarrassingly tacky, especially for how it compromises function in display space and UI for corny faux traditional look.

  • Reply 11 of 68
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,360member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Benjamin Frost View Post

     

    I think you've got your shapes mixed up. 

     

    The rectangular Apple Watch says geeky calculator watch/gadget boy; the round watch says traditional elegant.

     

    Note that whenever Apple portrays a skeuomorphic analogue watch face, it chooses a round one. I rest my case.


     

    We agree on a lot of things, but we're going to have to disagree on what is the optimal smartwatch shape, because I believe that square or rectangular is the way to go, and Apple got the shape right.

     

    With the iPhone, Apple changed up the entire mobile phone industry, and now people are walking around with super computers in their pockets.

     

    I believe that it is a mistake to view a smart watch and to compare it to what people are used to from old school, round watches that merely tell the time. A square display for a smart watch makes much more sense from the standpoint of delivering information and interacting with the smartwatch. It's not just about the looks in my opinion. Usefulness is not to be ignored.

  • Reply 12 of 68
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    ingela wrote: »
    The round faces of Android smart-watches will stigmatize Androidwear for quite a while. They look like ridiculous Kmart Dad Watches. A look that could only appeal to geekiest of geeks. Why anybody would think round was the way to go, I will never know. But I do know that they will be heavily discounted for the holiday season to try and get rid of them.

    Form follows function. That's the number one rule of design. Not make it look like something it's not because we think so poorly of the intelligence of our consumer.

    Obvioulsy Android OEMs decided function follows form for this category. What's hilarious though is all of these offerings are going to be commoditized and basically look the same in no time flat whereas Apple Watch will continue to be unique. Chinese companies are pumping out cheap circular watches what chance do Moto, LG, Samsung etc. have? Companies like Huawei have made it clear they want to bring non-smartphones to the West asap.
  • Reply 13 of 68
    ingelaingela Posts: 217member

    Yeah they did Apple a great favor didn't they? And comoditization is right, they look like all the other discount Timex watches in the jewelry section at the mini mall. Rolex they are not.

  • Reply 14 of 68
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,103member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by hillstones View Post



    Is there really a smart watch market to dominate? Has anyone ever seen anybody wear a smart watch that is currently on the market? I see a very small number of fit bits, but no watches. Millions of smart phone owners, but none of them wear a smart watch. If there was a market, you would see people wearing them now, from the vendors that sell them.



    "The first-generation Apple Watch relies on iPhone for features like GPS navigation and cellular data transmission"....and everything else to function. It is a $349 brick without the iPhone. I don't know why people would want a smart watch, from any vendor.

     

    Why the **** do you post here? I went through you recent posts, and every SINGLE one is negative, no matter what Apple hardware or software is being discussed. We're all shocked that you predict demise for this product, as it's clear from your posts you believe Apple is wrong in absolutely everything they do, and despise the company. Not one comment of praise. God, so depressing.  That's what one calls a troll. 

     

    Yeah, cause SO MANY PEOPLE had touchscreen phones before the iPhone, right?

    SO MANY PEOPLE owned tablets before the iPad, right?

     

    These things were extremely rare. What Apple will do is decimate the "smart watch" market, and also attract a ton of people from the regular "watch" market, as evidenced by their marketing strategy. You seem to be suggesting Apple should just wait a few more years until the market is more established, and they have less chance to make an impact. Your logic is pretty mind-numbing. 

  • Reply 15 of 68
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,103member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Benjamin Frost View Post

     

     

     

    I think you've got your shapes mixed up. 

     

    The rectangular Apple Watch says geeky calculator watch/gadget boy; the round watch says traditional elegant.

     

    Note that whenever Apple portrays a skeuomorphic analogue watch face, it chooses a round one. I rest my case.


     

    It's cute how you end most of your brain-dead posts with "I rest my case.", as if you've just made some incredible argument, when in reality, your post was a pathetic waste of bandwidth and not based in any kind of useful thought. Yeah, Apple should make a screen shape which does a piss poor job of displaying information in a versatile manner, so they can blindly follow the skeumorphic nature of mechanical watch hands developed centuries ago, which the Apple Watch does not include. Brilliant.  You've made no case, so you don't need to rest it. Stop insulting the intelligence of everyone on this board. 

  • Reply 16 of 68
    MacProMacPro Posts: 17,973member
    Good.
  • Reply 17 of 68
    adrayvenadrayven Posts: 460member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post



    This could potentially backfire for Apple, since the Watch market can never grow larger than the pool of iPhone owners, at least with the device's current capabilities. The first-generation Apple Watch relies on iPhone for features like GPS navigation and cellular data transmission

     

    Umm GPS is built into the Apple Watch.. It doesn't rely on the iPhone for that.. That was addressed months ago..  Lack of fact checking here....

     

    Quote:

    ARM and Qualcomm executives also remarked that the Apple Watch too closely resembles a "gadget," and that many people may prefer devices that resemble conventional watches. Products like the Moto 360 and LG Watch Urbane are consciously designed with round faces, among other traditional touches.




    Lack of understanding that many high-end watches that cost $10k + are not round. duuuurrrrrr

     

    Taking ARM and Qualcomm's advise on watch market, and what a watch collector wants, is like asking a 2 year old advice on what a collectable car is. He'd first just say, old cars, then he'd point to a plastic car his mom got him a year ago from Toy's-R-Us!

  • Reply 18 of 68
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post

     
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Benjamin Frost View Post

     

    I think you've got your shapes mixed up. 

     

    The rectangular Apple Watch says geeky calculator watch/gadget boy; the round watch says traditional elegant.

     

    Note that whenever Apple portrays a skeuomorphic analogue watch face, it chooses a round one. I rest my case.


     

    We agree on a lot of things, but we're going to have to disagree on what is the optimal smartwatch shape, because I believe that square or rectangular is the way to go, and Apple got the shape right.

     

    With the iPhone, Apple changed up the entire mobile phone industry, and now people are walking around with super computers in their pockets.

     

    I believe that it is a mistake to view a smart watch and to compare it to what people are used to from old school, round watches that merely tell the time. A square display for a smart watch makes much more sense from the standpoint of delivering information and interacting with the smartwatch. It's not just about the looks in my opinion. Usefulness is not to be ignored.


     

     

    Fair enough.

     

    I agree that for text, a rectangle is better than a circle. However, I don't think there is such a thing as an optimal smartwatch shape, because smartwatches are big compromises in the first place. Do I want to read this email on my watch? No, I’ll take out my iPhone or iPad.

  • Reply 19 of 68
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Ingela View Post

     
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Benjamin Frost View Post

     

     

     

    I think you've got your shapes mixed up. 

     

    The rectangular Apple Watch says geeky calculator watch/gadget boy; the round watch says traditional elegant.

     

    Note that whenever Apple portrays a skeuomorphic analogue watch face, it chooses a round one. I rest my case.


     

     Its really not even a "watch".

    If it had a movement that spins in a circular manner with numbers or symbols around the perimeter for the primary function of time keeping, then round makes sense.  Why make it look like something it's not? The round ones are embarrassingly tacky, especially for how it compromises function in display space and UI for corny faux traditional look.


     

     

    Yet that's what Apple always portrays in its analogue Apple Watch faces: round ones. And when you compare its digital and analogue faces in advertising, it often uses an analogue face.

     

    And there are plenty of rectangular traditional watches; round ones are much more popular, though. 

  • Reply 20 of 68
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Adrayven View Post

     
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post



    This could potentially backfire for Apple, since the Watch market can never grow larger than the pool of iPhone owners, at least with the device's current capabilities. The first-generation Apple Watch relies on iPhone for features like GPS navigation and cellular data transmission

     

    Umm GPS is built into the Apple Watch.. It doesn't rely on the iPhone for that.. That was addressed months ago..  Lack of fact checking here....

     

    Quote:

    ARM and Qualcomm executives also remarked that the Apple Watch too closely resembles a "gadget," and that many people may prefer devices that resemble conventional watches. Products like the Moto 360 and LG Watch Urbane are consciously designed with round faces, among other traditional touches.




    Lack of understanding that many high-end watches that cost $10k + are not round. duuuurrrrrr

     

    Taking ARM and Qualcomm's advise on watch market, and what a watch collector wants, is like asking a 2 year old advice on what a collectable car is. He'd first just say, old cars, then he'd point to a plastic car his mom got him a year ago from Toy's-R-Us!


     

     

    There's no GPS in the Apple Watch; that's one of its principal failings, many though there are of them.

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