back to article Qualcomm's tardy chip upgrade leaves the Great Wearables Reveal to jokers and clowns

The world's largest annual electronics trade show, IFA in Berlin, was supposed to be where wearables and in particular smartwatches returned from the dead. If a big theme emerges from IFA then retailers can make last-minute changes to their Christmas retail plans. If it doesn't, they focus on what they can flog. But Qualcomm …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "No notifications, no fitness tracking"

    So, it's just a £500 watch then? With the advantage that you can change the face?

    Here's an idea: how about having a collection of separate £10 watches instead?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: "No notifications, no fitness tracking"

      No matter what one thinks of it, being a market hit in Japan is an irrefutable measure of it's appeal. Given how poorly smart wearables have sold in the west (another irrefutable measure), perhaps Sony might succeed here too.

      Having said all that, I agree with you. I have a few watches to pick from and no amount of electronic agile display wizardry is ever going to appeal.

      1. ecarlseen

        Re: "No notifications, no fitness tracking"

        Given how poorly smart wearables have sold in the west

        Not sure about where you live, but out here in Southern California (population around 24 million) Apple Watches are very common - I see them everywhere from baristas to boardrooms, employees, trainers and people working out at the gym, etc. - and Southern California sets a lot of trends. I wouldn't say that they're anywhere near ubiquitous and I don't have any real numbers to go on, but if somebody claimed 10% or 15% of people out here wore one daily I wouldn't argue.

        What interests me the most is that I see financially successful men wearing them. Normally for guys like that watches are a form of dick-measuring contest (and the main reason I had stopped wearing a watch; those games don't interest me). I recall some time ago that one of the Swiss watchmakers scoffed that Apple would only be successful in their segment if they could find a way to get guys to stop wearing diamonds on their wrists. Well... they've made a dent, which I find a bit shocking. Or maybe I'm just not alone in my desire to not participate in the Enormous Gaudy Watch Olympics. It's actually kind of amusing that Apple has a product that's ostentatiously downscale in a particular market. In any case, it's nice to have a socially-acceptable watch to wear that doesn't happen to cost more than a decent car. I also see a lot more people wearing Garmins these days as well. Fitbits and other bracelet-style wearables seem to be losing their appeal.

  2. The Original Steve

    Pronounced Weiner?

    See title

  3. UberMunchkin

    I stopped wearing watches shortly after I started working in I.T., having something on my wrist that regularly gets snagged on a keyboard and/or hits buttons when I don't want it to is a massive hinderance.

    I still don't see what the point of the 'Smart' watch is, as far as I can tell they don't do anything that a smartphone can't already do but they do it less well and with a much more limited battery life.

    1. Nick Ryan Silver badge

      I stopped wearing watches shortly after getting a (reliable) mobile phone. Some Nokia of some form if I remember correctly.

      I know I'm not alone in this and while I can see the fashoin statements of watches, or the retro-chic, or the fitness-trackers the overall market of actual watches has almost certainly been savaged by mobile phones.

    2. jonathan keith

      Now Sir, if you just step over here...

      ... allow me to demonstrate our newest arrival which is simply *ideal* for the discerning I.T. professional: the Smart Fob Watch.

    3. R 11

      I still don't see what the point of the 'Smart' watch is, as far as I can tell they don't do anything that a smartphone can't already do but they do it less well and with a much more limited battery life.

      Do you know any women? Go talk to them about the lack of pockets on their clothes in which to keep a phone. Imagine if every time you wanted your phone you had to unzip rummage through a bag?

      Know any executives? Talk to them about how they like to receive notifications but don't want to look at their phone during a meeting?

      Know any schoolkids? Talk to them about facing the same issues as business execs.

      Know any fitness fanatics? Talk to them about tracking workouts.

      There's a bunch of use cases right there that benefit from a smart watch. I suspect they cover most of what keeps the segment alive, but others might add more.

      As more folk are seen wearing smart watches, the bulkiness becomes more acceptable and others join in. Also, among millennials (and increasingly also among older users) using a phone to actually call people is becoming rare. I think there's every prospect that we'll start to see more folk ditching phones altogether if their watch can do cellular data and input mechanisms can be improved along with battery life.

  4. Waseem Alkurdi

    Arrange icons can move icons.


POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Other stories you might like