Thinking of buying the Apple Watch? Think again!

Published: September 14, 2014
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Apple Watch is seen during an Apple event at the Flint Center in Cupertino. PHOTO: REUTERS

While watching the Apple product launch live-stream at 3am in the morning, I was honestly really impressed with the new Apple Watch. As an Android user, I didn’t really care much for the ‘innovative’ new iPhone with its bigger screen (which my HTC already possesses). But yes, the Apple Watch struck me.

Not so much at first though, because the square design seemed a bit too antique for me. However, with the unveiling of numerous different kinds of straps for the watch, its beautiful design, the features it offered you, and its nifty ‘clock faces’, as well as the clever way of communicating with others, I was impressed beyond belief, so much so that I actually felt intimidated and was stunned at the level to which technology had now reached.

Tim Cook announces the launch of the Apple Watch. Photo: AFP

So yes, I wanted to buy it… that is, until I saw the price and began thinking about everything listed below.

Price

Launching in the US at $349, it’s difficult for me to believe how a person earning an average salary will be able to afford such an extravagantly priced watch. And when it comes to Pakistan, it’s probably going to cost a lot more than just $349. You can count on that.

Only iPhone users can use it

Yes, you read that right. The only way you can use an Apple Watch is if you already own an iPhone, since all those nifty features of the watch are only accessible when it is connected to the iPhone via Bluetooth. Without it, the watch is rendered useless.

So, what if someone is interested in buying the watch, but prefers their phone to be an Android? Are we expected to add the price of a new iPhone on top of that of the Apple Watch?

iPhone battery life

Since we’re aware that the watch’s features are only enabled when connected to an iPhone via Bluetooth, wouldn’t that just be another one of the many ways in which your iPhone is going to drain in battery? iPhones already barely make it throughout the day without a charger, with this new feature are we supposed to carry a power bank with us at all times in order to charge our iPhone’s battery, if we want to use the watch?

The iPhone 6 and Apple Watch. Photo: AFP

Apple Watch battery life

If you forget to charge your watch before leaving the house and it drains in battery, and if you’re like me, that is, the kind of person who looks at a watch as a necessity… what are you going to do? The only other solution I can think of is carrying a normal watch around with you at all times, in case the Apple Watch dies.

So what, exactly, is the use of owning an Apple Watch then?

What’s the need?

Because honestly, let’s just take a second to think about this… why would you ever even want to look at your pictures or use your watch for directions on an approximately one-inch-long screen? Since you’re already going to have an iPhone, in order to use the watch, why not just stick to the phone and ditch the watch? You’ll already have all the watch’s features in your phone, so what’s the need?

The phone will be much easier and convenient to use than having to connect your watch to your iPhone first and then go on to use its features.

Will it survive in Pakistan?

In Pakistan, if you wear this watch while you’re out of your house, it would just be an invitation for muggers to come and rob you. Even in a place like Malaysia, where I currently reside, I would never feel comfortable wearing the Apple Watch outside on the streets, since it would require me to be extra cautious at all times.

There are countless more reasons that need to be thought over before splurging on this new invention by Apple. Do you really need another gadget which has to be charged before leaving the house? Do you really need another gadget to distract you from your priorities, since it would be buzzing on your wrist every two minutes from incoming messages and the likes?

When it comes to Apple, I think one’s motto should be “think before you splurge”. Because, surely, some things may have the wow factor but are they actually useful? And, more importantly, are they worth your money?

Myra Mitha

Myra Mitha

An apt case study of diaspora blues, the author is overwhelmed by the qualms and woes of being Pakistani. She currently resides in Malaysia, humanising chatbots. A writer by nature and nurture, she blogs at mithamatics.wordpress.com. She tweets at @MyraM93 (twitter.com/MyraM93)

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • Acorn Guts

    To be honest $349 is more than reasonable for a quality watch to begin with. Add the brand appeal, features and cult points .. the price is a not the issue here at all.

    The reason why should avoid watch is the same that’s been for every single Apple product to date – never buy first gen apple product.

    Give it another year and they’ll make it thinner, lighter, more powerful and better looking than the fat, baloney shape it is now.Recommend

  • OverThePhone

    without a week minimum battery life on the watch its absolutely rubbish. Charging a watch every night is an no no. waste of time and money.Recommend

  • Imad

    Good article. But you forget that Apple products have become somewhat of a status symbol. So people will buy whatever Apple comes out with. Recommend

  • nadeem

    A very balanced and objective analysisRecommend

  • CopyPaste Zindabad

    Whats the need? and Will it survive?? enough said.. like your stable thinkingRecommend

  • Green Teen

    I myself was not too overwhelmed by the Apple Watch, or as I like to call it, the iWatch. I was unaware of the fact that you needed the new iPhone to actually use the watch, which now brings me to realize that it isn’t even as good as I originally believed. Even though I prefer iOS over Android, I’d like to think I’d prefer the S-Gear over the iWatch.Recommend

  • Proud_ kafir

    Sour grapes lady…..Let others buy it if they want to.Recommend

  • Guest

    I was impressed beyond belief, so much so that I actually felt
    intimidated and was stunned at the level to which technology had now
    reached.

    This sentence pretty much makes me feel that you are clueless about the tech world. Reading further, made it pretty clear that you have no idea how the watch is meant to be used. Please don’t write articles on topics about which you are not educated.Recommend

  • BlackJack

    ET – if you don’t want comments that criticize the blog (or you), then you should say so in your policy. Not allowing my comment really makes no sense.Recommend

  • Green Teen

    I love the word ‘Baloney’ that you have used. Describes the shape perfectly. Apple’s known for producing objects which they tend to make thinner, lighter, faster, and better looking than it’s previous versions. I look at the very first iMac right now, and I laugh. Ten years later, we’ll be laughing at the iPhone 6 and Apple Watch 1.Recommend

  • Tariq

    A very balanced overview. Aside from the technical issues, needing to charge such a simple gadget as a watch every night is a big NO. Why couldn’t Apple break the mold and come up with a perpetually charged watch, like the Ecodrive watches by Citizen which charge using ambient light. As a user one would prefer simplicity rather than added complication from using Apple’s gadgets, and I feel that after the departure of Steve Jobs Apple has lost sight of that goal.Recommend

  • BlackJack

    I had touched upon this in a long post that ET chose to store in their personal archives in the Recycle bin. The life of a battery depends on what you intend to use it for. Do you know how much power is required if you need track optical heart-rate over the course of a single day? More than your Ecodrive watch consumes in a couple of years. Apple is not in the battery making business, although battery life will be a key concern that they grapple with in the next couple of iterations if they intend to add more sensors to the device. But if you are looking for simplicity, there are much cheaper solar watches with single dials that will tell time and never need charging.Recommend

  • Kiran

    Going by your approach Apple was not in the phone making business till 2007, and if they had stuck with your argument the world would never have seen the wonderful gadgets that Apple has delivered during last seven years, changing the very face of the cellphone industry. Learn to adapt rather than resist innovation.Recommend

  • Tariq

    The frivolous nature of ur assertion does not merit a response. Recommend

  • alicia

    We are not still sure what exactly is coming from apple , lets hope for the best, certainly a new industry is opening for Apple developers.Recommend