Tech Opinion: Watch out for Apple

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[dropcap]I[/dropcap]n the last decade, America stopped wearing watches after everyone realized they can just look at their smartphone for the time of day. But this coming April, Apple will try to convince America once more that wristwatches are fashionable again with their entry into the smartwatch market, the Apple Watch.

Rumors of the Apple developing some sort of wearable computer had been floating around long before being announced last September. With those rumors, companies like Samsung, Motorola and Pebble already have smartwatches in the market and available for consumers.

So if smartwatches are already available for as cheap as $200, what’s going to make the Apple Watch special? Is it worth camping in line on release day outside the Apple store just to get your hands on one?

If you’re not crazy about Apple products, there’s probably no reason to get one on opening day, or any day for that matter. The Apple Watch is going to do what many smartwatches already do. Users will be able to receive notifications, track fitness statistics and answer calls. For the most part though, not every currently available watch has all the features the Apple Watch will have.

The Apple Watch will have its own set of features too. Users will be able to fulfill their Dick Tracy fantasies by being able to take FaceTime calls. And if you’re already using Apple Pay in stores to pay for stuff, the Apple Watch will afford you that same convenience. And there is some cool integration with existing Apple products, such as controlling your Apple TV or using the watch as a viewfinder for your iPhone camera. If you aren’t already using Apple products however, these features are going to seem like gimmicks.

The real reason to be excited for the Apple Watch isn’t the watch itself. Like most products before it, the Apple Watch doesn’t have to be the first on the scene to change the market. They just have to be the best designed. Apple’s approach to design in tech is what makes their products so popular, and what promotes advancement and innovation in the entire industry.

The iPhone wasn’t the first smartphone, but its popularity lead the way for other companies like Android to pursue smart phones. Apple has done it before with other products like the iPod for MP3 players, and the iPad for tablet computing.

So even if you’re not excited for the Apple Watch, if you’re at all tech savvy you should acknowledge something big is on the horizon. Though not everyone is going to be wearing an Apple Watch in the next year, enough are going to do it to make smartwatches cool. Just like clockwork, Apple is going to make a slightly vague technology into a fashionable commodity.

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