Apple Watch: 11 Sweet Gadgets To Buy Instead - InformationWeek

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2/9/2015
12:06 PM
Thomas Claburn
Thomas Claburn
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Apple Watch: 11 Sweet Gadgets To Buy Instead

The Apple Watch is coming soon. Lovely though it may be, there are other nifty devices to consider instead.
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(Image source: Apple)

(Image source: Apple)

When Apple Watch arrives in April, it will not be a flop. It won't be as big a hit as the iPhone, but many people will buy one. I won't be among them, but I wish Apple well as it wades into the wearables market.

In November, Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty predicted Apple will sell 30 million of its watches in 2015, an estimate based on the assumption that about 10% of iPhone users will buy one. With the Apple Watch starting at $350, that's potentially more than $10 billion in revenue.

It would be unwise to bet against Apple, a company now at the height of its power, one that has proven naysayers wrong again and again. But I don't see the Apple Watch as an object of desire. It does nothing for me.

First off, I don't wear a watch and don't plan to start. I'm staring at my computer screen most of the day and can read the time in the menu bar just fine. And when not in front of a computer, I can determine the time using my iPhone 6, or the Google Nexus tablet I use as an e-reader. For time-telling and other functions, the Apple Watch is largely redundant.

[ If you do covet a smartwatch, you'll have plenty of options. Read Swatch, Pebble Girding For Apple Watch Fight. ]

More significantly, none of the Apple Watch's applications look compelling. I don't care to share squiggly drawings with people. I don't want yet another channel to receive text messages, email messages, or notifications. And I'm not interested in health data – tracking my activity will not have a meaningful impact on my quality of life.

Also, I have no interest in taking on the burden of charging the device after a few hours of use. By most accounts I've read, battery life will be an issue for Apple Watch wearers.

What's more, the Apple Watch is not inexpensive for a device without a compelling purpose. I've never seen the point in over-spending for the sake of a luxury label, absent some quality or functional differentiation. Then again, compared to a five-figure Rolex, a few hundred dollars represents a bargain. If Apple can convince people to pay many times more than the $350 base price for special editions of its timepiece, it deserves all the revenue it can collect. The notion of a gold-plated iMac sounds absurd to function-oriented tech customers, but watches attract jewelry buyers who accept huge markups.

Ultimately, if the Apple Watch turns out to be life-changing, version 2.0 will be even better. I can wait.

There are, however, a few gadgets I'm keeping an eye on. They may not be as meticulously designed or engineered as the Apple Watch, but I think they're pretty cool. Check them all out on the following pages, and then tell me what you think of my choices in the comments section below.

Thomas Claburn has been writing about business and technology since 1996, for publications such as New Architect, PC Computing, InformationWeek, Salon, Wired, and Ziff Davis Smart Business. Before that, he worked in film and television, having earned a not particularly useful ... View Full Bio

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nomii
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nomii,
User Rank: Ninja
2/26/2015 | 1:57:32 AM
Re: Eero and the drone
Zano drone would be a good toy to have but from its usability point of view I think they can be more used in media covering the concerts or gatherings like that. For personal use, my boy would be happy to operate one but having a camera won't really matter to him.
nomii
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nomii,
User Rank: Ninja
2/26/2015 | 1:53:46 AM
Re: Apple Watch: 11 Sweet Gadgets To Buy Instead
@angelfuego: It is not on 90% people radar either and doesn't seem to be in near future if it stays on sale with the current features. I think it would have been launched as a supporting product like Samsung Gear, it was not launched as a primary product so its failure didn't have an impact on the reputation.
mak63
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mak63,
User Rank: Ninja
2/20/2015 | 2:15:20 AM
Eero and the drone
Eero sounds like a good idea, and something that a lot of people will use. I already bought 2 wireless routers for my house, to use'em as access points (with dd-wrt).

Zano Drone

" I'm not sure what I'd use it for, but I could probably think of something"

I like that. Funny and so true. Nice "toy" to have.

 
Angelfuego
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Angelfuego,
User Rank: Ninja
2/15/2015 | 9:01:09 PM
Re: Apple Watch: 11 Sweet Gadgets To Buy Instead
Although I am a fan and user of Apple products but don't plan on buying the Apple watch, I am still surprised that only 10% of iPhone users are assumed to purchase the Apple watch. I'll never say never, but it's definitely nit on my radar right now. I am more inerested in exploring the other sweet gadgets.
Angelfuego
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Angelfuego,
User Rank: Ninja
2/15/2015 | 8:58:38 PM
Re: Apple Watch: 11 Sweet Gadgets To Buy Instead
@Thomas, I agree with you. I think I will hold off on buying the Apple watch this spring as well. The watch doesn't appear to be my style either, and Inam a person that does wear watches. I don't want another device to receive texts and emails. I have a hard enough time keeping up with texts and emails now, with the devices I already have. It gets overwhelming for me. The ultimate point that you brought up which definitely makes me not interested in getting the watch is the expected short battery life of the product. That right there is a turn off to me now. I have enough time keeping up with charging all my devices now. I feel like that is what I do all day and night now. I am constantly charging devices, taking devices off of the charger and plugging other devices to charge. The cycle doesn't stop. On a side note, my Kindle is the best device I own.use just about use it on a daily basis and don't have to charge it for weeks on end.
Angelfuego
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Angelfuego,
User Rank: Ninja
2/15/2015 | 8:51:57 PM
Re: Apple Watch: 11 Sweet Gadgets To Buy Instead
@freespiritny25: I agree with you. The solar charger with the flashlight does sound very appealing to me as well. I agree, it is perfect for camping. I am an avid camper, so I would love this product!
freespiritny25
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freespiritny25,
User Rank: Ninja
2/15/2015 | 4:04:28 PM
Re: Apple Watch: 11 Sweet Gadgets To Buy Instead
I agree. As of now, the Apple watch does not interest me. The primary reason is I do not wear a watch and the watch does not seem to do anything more than my phone already does. Like you, I will wait and see what's next. My favorite gadgets listed are the one that provides a more consistent wifi and the solar chargwer with flashlight- very cool for camping!
Kelly22
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Kelly22,
User Rank: Strategist
2/12/2015 | 5:09:27 PM
Re: WAKAWAKA
I'd also buy the WakaWaka power device over Apple Watch in a heartbeat. It's a cool and handy product, and you can use it to help people in need. Still not convinced the Apple Watch will be worth it, but who knows, maybe they'll surprise me.
glenbren
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glenbren,
User Rank: Ninja
2/12/2015 | 1:07:57 PM
WAKAWAKA
The WAKAWAKA Power unit interests me, mostly because I like saying the name, WAKAWAKA!. I'd buy this before an Apple Watch. It would be quite useful, and I like the fact that you buy one, and one gets donated to someone in need.
Gigi3
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Gigi3,
User Rank: Ninja
2/12/2015 | 7:25:29 AM
Re: gadgets
"The first generation of Apple watch is not so fancy to me. The idea is good but it's not so impressive - I tried but don't think it's essential to my daily life like mobile phone. I am seeking for some kind of smart watch, which can replace my mobile phone in the pocket."

Li, just wait for the next version and latest releases from their competitors too.
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