November 23, 2014

Apple’s Rumored iWatch as an ‘Even More Personal Personal Computer’

Former Apple executive Jean-Louis Gassée shares his perspective on Apple’s rumored “iWatch”, noting that the company likely has very ambitious plans for the device given its focus on continually pushing forward the concept of a “personal computer”.

[W]hat really floats their [boats], what hardens Apple’s resolve is designing, making, and selling large numbers of personal computers, from the traditional desktop/laptop Mac, to the genre-validating iPad, and on to the iPhone — the Very Personal Computer. Everything else is an ingredient, a booster, a means to the noblest end.

After walking through how Apple’s iTunes Store, retail effort, software, and Apple TV all serve as ancillary offerings to support this positioning of the company’s primary products as increasingly personal computers, Gassée argues that the iWatch is the next step in this progression and thus Apple will do much more than simply slap a previous-generation iPod nano into a wristband.

Is Apple working on an iWatch that can be experienced as an Even More Personal personal computer — an “intimate computer”? If so, many questions arise: user interface, sensors, iOS version, new types of apps, connection with other iDevices… And, of course price.

This would be much more interesting than the perennially in-the-future Apple TV set. Of course, iWatch and Apple TV aren’t necessarily mutually exclusive.

Gassée’s piece comes just as British newspaper The Observer has produced its own mockup of what an iWatch might look like given claims of Apple using Corning’s bendable Willow Glass for the device.

iWatch graphic
There is no reason to believe that The Observer has any more insight into the strongly rumored Apple research project than anyone else, but the graphics which accompany the article reproduced on the sister-paper Guardian website do give an interesting feel for the difference a curved glass display could make to a smart watch and the article offers an overview of how Apple might fit into the smart watch market still in its infancy.


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