Do You Really Need a Smartwatch?

They say the early bird catches the worm and despite the fact that the smartwatch craze hasn’t hit Georgia yet, just like all the other innovational technology trends, it is bound to roll towards this country quite soon. So, I have decided to make sure you’re prepared and help you answer the question a lot of people have been asking themselves lately – “do I really need a smartwatch?”

Since the introduction of the term “smartphone” in 1995, people have shown an ever-growing interest in purchasing ‘smart’ gadgets, resulting in the birth of smart TVs, smart glasses, smartbands, and more. Now the Android vs. iOS war has moved to a new battleground – the Smartwatch Empire. Although Google has successfully defeated Apple in the smartphone wars (according to STATISTICA, 75% of purchased smartphones run Android), Tim Cook’s company (or should I say, Steve Jobs’) has gained an astounding victory in the smartwatch face-off, as Apple received more 1 million pre-orders during the first weekend of the watch’s availability, while it took Google almost a year to sell 720,000 Android Wear devices.

Why did Android Wear sink while Apple Watch succeeded?

Although the official sales figures haven’t been released yet, it is clear that Apple Watch has already raced past Android Wear. The reason for that? Correct marketing. Apple Inc. has clearly shattered the common belief that high prices put customers off. Whereas moderately expensive items are often overlooked, extremely costly products are adored, as an unbelievably high price automatically moves the item into the ‘luxurious’ category, making it desirable. While most of the manufacturers decided to focus on customer-friendly prices, Apple has been playing the luxury game all along, by releasing a $10,000 Apple Watch Edition (alongside its Apple Watch Sport and Apple Watch, which both cost twice as much as an average Android Wear gadget) and using indirect advertising (Apple gave music royalty Beyoncé and the head of Chanel fashion house, Karl Lagerfeld custom made gold smartwatches), further strengthening the opulent status of the device.

Now that we have put the Apple Watch vs. Android Wear business out of our way; it’s time to assess the pros and cons of owning any smartwatch at all.

Should you or should you not?

· The number one thing you need to know about smartwatches is that they require a smartphone running the same operating system. Though technically they are considered as a fully functional devices on their own, they are not. So don’t bother buying one if you don’t own a smartphone.

· A smartwatch can be a very useful accessory if you are all about fitness, as it can monitor your heart rate, running speed, etc. However, if health tracking is your only concern, you’d be better off purchasing a smartband, which will do the same job for you and save you a lot of money.

· Both Android Wear and Apple Watch have an array of applications and features, which may seem quite impressive at first, but frankly, the only thing those features do is tell you to look at your smartwatch. And although you can decline a phone call, answering requires you to dig out your phone; you’ll be notified when you have an email, but if you want to reply, you’ll have to use the smartphone for typing, and so on.

· Battery life is also a huge con for a smartwatch. As if you weren’t tired enough of charging your smartphone, now you’ll have to charge your watch as well.

· Another thing you should take into consideration is your eyes, as watching tiny notifications on a tiny screen is the last thing they need.

· Don’t forget about the size as well. Smartwatches are quite bulky and not for those who favor small wristbands.

Taking all of the above-mentioned into consideration, I believe one thing is for sure – smartwatches have no particular features which are worth paying hundreds of dollars for. The failure of Google Glass clearly showed that humanity is perfectly okay with some of our accessories being as ‘dumb’ as they always were. And while there seems to be no particular way any smartwatch would make your life much easier (at least for now), I advise you to save your money and not buy one.

Beqa Kirtava

28 May 2015 22:48