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09/15/14

Watchful thinking: The smart watch hardly lives up to billing

I don't own a wrist watch. And I definitely don't have a smart watch, either.
Nor do I plan on getting one any time soon.
With that mentality, I like to think I'm in the majority when it comes to smart watches, even with Apple and its newly released smart watch.
That isn't to suggest that the Apple smart watch, or others of that same variety and ilk, aren't remarkably impressive. The idea that you can answer calls or download any and all apps at the touch of a button on your wrist is nothing short of amazing.
But practical, probably not.

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The smart watch marketplace is one that is exclusive, in the sense that a $300 piece of technology could easily be considered a waste of money or the type of purchase that is seemed extravagant and unnecessary.
Has the gadget world really reached a point where the general public and masses can't be bothered to pull out their smart phone in favor of putting their ear up to a watch that serves a similar function?
The real issue with smart phones isn't that they aren't useful or intelligent in their own way, but the price point and the crowded field of technology make this a hard sell for even the most adept and up to date consumer.
Most smart phones cost at least a few hundred dollars, so doubling that total to add a smart watch seems a little gratuitous. What cell phone providers are banking on are the various programs they've ushered out to allow customers to lease gadgets, phones and tablets for a monthly fee instead of a long term contract.
You can have the latest devices for anywhere between $25-40 per month, but the catch is the term is usually two years or longer, meaning you're eventually going to pay the inane full price of these products. But the general consumer only is paying attention to getting a smart watch, phone or tablet for less than a $1 per day.
So AT&T, Verizon and others are hoping to sell a slew of smart watches since they're assuming their customers have extra cash available. Even with that mindset, the watch is going to be a tough sell as being universally accepted as anything more than a fad.
The watches will sell well, but ultimately their time is limited.

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