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Futurist: The Rise of the Smartwatch

Taking a call on your smartwatch?

Taking a call on your smartwatch?

Wristwatches were in decline - then they weren't!

I like to do every once in a while to design a new solution to a problem. It's not that I have a desire to be an innovator; it's just that I love the concepts of innovation. Innovation is a way to solve problems uniquely. Let me give you a little of the history of my path to SartWatch devotee!. I was in the first 100 backers of the original Kickstarter project Pebble. The Pebble was the first Smartwatch. And innovation started by a small company, a large company later purchased that. But at the time of the kick-starter campaign, I wasn't backing Pebble; I was backing a smartwatch. The concept of a smartwatch was intriguing to me. The integration with your cell phone of a smartwatch offered amazing potential. I do have to be fair. Before the rise of the Smartwatch, the wristwatch was in decline. Sales were down, and there didn't appear to be a way back on the wrist of the world.


Wristwatches have long been status symbols. But they were also useful tools for many years. They allowed you to know what time it was. If you think about the reality of a wristwatch, the gentle flip of your wrist to display the time during a meeting certainly conveys a message you may not want to convey. I am bored; I am trying to see how much more time in this long boring meeting. In the early part of 2000, Microsoft came out with a product known as the Spot Watch. Now, Spot Watch did something that was a game-changer for me. You could have news on your wrist. You could have weather on your wrist. Plus, you didn't have to do anything to get that information. At the time the Spot Watch came out, I was traveling a lot. For me, Spot Watch always reset itself to the local time based on the radio broadcast. It also worked in Europe, the radio broadcast that reset time. So I always knew what time it was, and it was always the atomic time for that specific time zone. The Spt Watch let me select the information I wanted. News, weather, or spots from a web page where I selected what I wanted. It also gave me real-time local weather. I have to say; as a smartwatch user, I was very sad when Microsoft disconnected and discontinued the smartwatch spot service.


The first Smartwatch beyond Spot was Pebble. It arrived via Kickstarter!. While I was already on Kickstarter but the concept of a smartwatch was important to me. I was delighted when 18 months after the end of that campaign, the first Pebble shipped. Then Pebble 2 came on the Kickstarter campaign; then I backed Pebble to his well. I still have my original Pebble watch and a storage case in my bathroom at home. Since but more than anything, what I think Pebble did was prove there was a market.

It is a second screen on your wrist!

It is a second screen on your wrist!

Excuse me i have to take this Smartwatch call!!!!

At the time my Pebble arrived, I was still also using a Fitbit. The Fitbit tracked my steps, and the Pebble was my Smartwatch. The cool thing about the Pebble beyond the information you could display on the screen was that you could display many different watch faces. The integration with my iPhone was via an application on the phone. I had moved from the Windows phone world to the iPhone by that point. But I have to say when the iWatch first was announced; I was happy with my Pebble. It was when Pebble stopped being independent that I swatched. Pebble's IP got acquired by another company. That I stopped using my Pebble, at that point, I switched to the iWatch, which by then was in its second version. The ability, the capability of literally having a second screen on my wrist. It meant that when my phone was ringing in my pocket, I could see who was calling. It also meant, of course, that I could be Dick Tracy and answer phone calls on my wrists. Since the introduction of the iWatch, I've upgraded three times. I watched to I watch for and now the iWatch seven. I've also got my wife hooked on having an iWatch.


The concept of the Smartwatch continues to be interesting. With the iWatch and, I believe, also the Samsung gear and a couple of others, the watch can run applications separate from your phone. One of the things I do is take long walks—every day. I use my watch to track the walk. The watch also tracks my steps, my heart rate, and my blood oxygen level. I have heard several people with irregular heartbeats or other issues have had their iWatch report them. In that case, I suspect you could say the Smartwatch saved their life. The capability and ability of a smartwatch remain amazing to me.


Now I don't know what the final numbers are to wrap up this article where I started. I do know that with the rise of smartwatches, wristwatches are no longer declining. They may not ever return to the levels they were at before. My great-grandfathers and my father's father carried pocket watches. They were huge in 1900. By 1960 they were pretty much gone. The wristwatch declined, but the Smartwatch appeared. The Smartwatch kept the wristwatch viable, the wristwatch appearing in the 1900s and still going today—the reality of smartwatches. Now what would be cool is if DragonDictate would build a watch application. Then I could dictate to my watch and not have to carry my phone outside of my pocket in the winter. But that's a future state, and I'm sure somebody is working on it today. Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to make a phone call on my Smartwatch!

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2021 DocAndersen

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