Most of us who claim to be certified members of the Apple Watchers Club™ have been on the lookout for the next insanely great thing from Apple. What will it be? An autonomous Apple Car? Apple Glasses with virtual reality? A Mac with a touchscreen? An iPad with real keyboard shortcuts? A Siri that does something useful for the rest of us? AirPods that detect brain waves?
I’ve been giving the future some thought and I think Apple’s next great thing is here already?
You may have one already and certainly you’ve seen them in the wild. We knew Apple had a hit with the iPod when we started to see those iconic white earbuds all over town. Guess what you see all over town?
Is that Apple’s next great thing?
The answer is a less definitive yes, and a more ambivalent no. Watch with heart rate monitor and pedometer makes the device a very good health product. Watch with a built-in ECG– an electrocardiogram– makes Watch an excellent health product.
What about future generation Watch models with a feature to measure blood oxygen levels? Or, the next Watch which can monitor blood pressure? Or, the next one after that which can monitor blood glucose levels in real time? Or, perhaps somewhere between those an Apple Watch which monitors sleep?
Apple’s next insanely great thing is here already.
Remember, the original Mac was a tiny black and white personal computer that didn’t do much (with MacWrite and MacPaint) for a few years. Yes, point and click was the future, but it took Microsoft 10 years to a version of Windows to the masses. The original iPhone didn’t do much, either. Calls, texts, email, web browsing, contacts and calendar, and the anemic camera.
Compare that to what an iPhone does today; the improvements in a decade are indicative of the value of incremental or iterative improvements. Have we not seen exactly the same thing with Apple’s health initiatives in Apple Watch?
Pedometer, meet heart rate monitor. ECG, meet blood glucose monitor. See how that works? Apple’s next great thing is Watch, and it will continue to improve as Apple adds more features that customers want– just as it did with iPhone every year.
Yes, there might be an Apple Car. It’s possible AirPods will have some biometric functionality, too. And augmented reality could easily make Apple Glasses the PC of the future. As it was with iPhone, a larger and growing part of Apple’s future– and the next great thing– is here already in Watch.