Apple products attract devout followers. But the news that an Apple Watch is coming excited some people even more than the iPhone 6 did. The new product is a completely new device for Apple, although not for other tech companies. When Tim Cook announced in September that we will have the device on the wrist in early 2015, we assumed that he meant January.
However, a leaked transcript presented by 9to5mac tells a different story. Apple Senior Vice President of Retail and Online Stores Angela Ahrendts told the employees that “we’re going into the holidays, we’ll go into Chinese New Year, and then we’ve got a new watch launch coming in the spring.” The Chinese New Year falls on February 19. Chances are that the device will be released sometimes in March. It’s not exactly “early 2015” but not that distant.
Reports from 2013 indicated that Apple will release the device in fall 2014. Problems with the battery design convinced the company to delay the release, as Tim Cook wants the battery to last for at least a whole day.
While we do appreciate the struggle to release an impressive device, perfectionism comes with a couple of downsides. Keep in mind that we now witness Apple trying to catch up with competitors, a first in a very long time. LG, Sony, Samsung and even Microsoft, all launched smartwatches or some variant.
Microsoft Band, the latest release, works on iPhones, as well as on Android and Windows Phone powered devices. Although presented as a fitness tracker, Microsoft Band is a basic smartwatch equipped with a surprisingly large number of sensors. Motorola Moto 360 is already a hit. Other producers won’t stand still and by the time Apple finally launches the Watch, we expect improved Android smartwatches to hit the market.
But Apple forces a strategy that encompasses several solutions. The company will release the Apple Watch in three different styles and two sizes. Basically, 34 models will be available, an impressive diversity. Obviously, Apple bets on one key characteristic, design. The smartwatch will be permanently strapped on the wrist, so it will fulfill the same role previously performed by expensive watches, that of conferring distinction. Although the device comes with impressive specs, technical performance may come in second for many, as long as the device gets enough power to last a whole day.