Gone are the days when a new technology gadget platform had an obvious value proposition or use case scenario. iPhone in 2007 was a new generation smartphone but became something entirely different once the App Store opened and problems had solutions thanks to Apple’s there’s an app for that slogan. Watch is going through a similar migration from the basics as a fashionable alert system to a mixed use platform.
The original Watch was as much status symbol as fashionable accessory to iPhone, and as much a handy alert or notification system accessory to iPhone. As is the case with everything Apple, what was is not what is and not what it will become.
Watch went from fashionable notification system to add health and exercise to the list. What’s next?
More health monitoring options. The Food And Drug Administration has approved the fist medication device accessory for Watch– the KardiaBand electrocardiogram reader made by AliveCor. In this case, the technology to obtain an EKG isn’t in Watch itself, but in a Watch band. The device works with Apple Watch’s ability to track your heart rate, display alerts accordingly, so you can take an instant EKG and share results with your doctor.
This is just the beginning of where Watch will travel, so those nattering nabobs of negativism who couldn’t figure out Watch’s potential should be ignored when they offer future advice on which products are successful and which are destined to become a footnote in tech history.
Watch is a success.
What is coming? Apple is known to be working with other companies and health care professionals on real time oxygen monitoring and blood sugar sensors, the latter of which might be a Holy Grail of sorts, thanks to the proliferation of Type 2 diabetes. Suddenly, Watch isn’t just a fashion accessory or an alert system or an exercise tracker– it can track your health in ways only a doctor could in the past.
Where is this going?
Already health insurers are offering to subsidize the price tag because of a simple, basic, rule of humanity. Performance tracked is performance improved. If we pay attention to our health, even through the use of heart and exercise monitors on the wrist, we tend to be healthier, and healthier patients result in more profitable health insurers.
Only Apple knows how many Watch units have been sold to date, but 25-million to 30-million seems to be a good guess. Watch with the ability to monitor the heart in new ways, or check blood sugar, or monitor blood oxygen levels becomes an attractive and affordable health care device that would be useful for perhaps hundreds of millions of customers.
What bothers me about so-called technology writers and market analysts is why they could not see such changes in the Watch as a platform that develops, grows, improves, and takes on more capability. Much of the analysis and headlines we read about Watch being doomed or an outright failure seem shortsighted to ignorant these days.