Smartwatch is Dead, Market Implodes, Apple Watch Shipments Collapse

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on Google+Share on RedditPrint this pageEmail this to someone

The market “experienced a round of growing pains.”

We have pooh-poohed the media love story about Apple Watch and similar devices when they first came out. We were particularly amused by how Apple was able to dominate entire front pages of the fawning financial press when it introduced the watch. At the time, nothing else mattered or happened. That was March 9, 2015. I took some screenshots, showing how great Apple really is in wrapping the media around its cordless Magic Trackpad… Apple Comes Out with a Watch, and Look What Happens:

us-apple-free-publicity-mw-event-started-3-2015

But even with all our cynicism about this sort of hype, we did not expect the market to just implode like this, and for Apple Watch shipments to just totally collapse. But they did.

In the third quarter, according to International Data Corporation (IDC), global smartwatch shipments plunged 51.6% year-over-year. “A round of growing pains,” as IDC put it. Just 2.7 million of these devices were shipped, down from 5.6 million a year ago.

Apple Watch is still the market leader with a 41.3% share, but shipments collapsed by 71.6% year-over-year, to just 1.1 million watches, down from 3.9 million a year ago. IDC was struggling with explanations for the debacle:

Its first-generation Watches accounted for the majority of volumes during the quarter, leading to the significant downturn for the quarter. Its Series One and Series Two did little to stem that decline….

Although the decline is significant, it is worth noting that 3Q15 was the first time Apple’s Watch had widespread retail availability after a limited online launch. Meanwhile, the second generation Apple Watch was only available in the last two weeks of 3Q16.




Garmin, however, catapulted itself to number two with a market share of 20.5%, up from 2.3% a year ago, with shipments soaring 324% to 0.6 million devices. IDC credited Garmin’s rise on “its growing list of ConnectIQ-enabled smartwatches and the addition of the fenix Chronos,” and on its “focus on health and fitness.”

Samsung also moved up in market share, now at 14.4%, up from 6.4% a year ago, after shipments in the quarter rose 9% to 0.4 million, “on the strength of its aging Gear S2 smartwatches.”

Lenovo, which in 2014 had acquired the Motorola Mobility smartphone business from Google, experienced a shipment collapse of 73.3%, worse even than Apple’s, to just 0.1 million devices. IDC ascribed it to “channels selling out” and “scarcity” of its Moto 360 devices. Plus this: the third quarter marked “the first time in which Motorola did not introduce a new smartwatch in time for the holiday quarter, adding to its decline in the market.”

The remaining smartwatch makers also got the rug pulled out from under them. Pebble shipments fell 54.1% to 0.1 million, and “others” dropped 27.2% to 0.5 million.

ICC grappled with how to put this fiasco into some kind of perspective, other than the sector’s effective demise as a broad must-have consumer device:

Although the decline is significant, it is worth noting that 3Q15 was the first time Apple’s Watch had widespread retail availability after a limited online launch. Meanwhile, the second generation Apple Watch was only available in the last two weeks of 3Q16.

Ramon Llamas, research manager for IDC’s Wearables team, came up with these nuggets – I mean, what else are you going to say?

“The sharp decline in smartwatch shipment volumes reflects the way platforms and vendors are realigning.”

“Apple revealed a new look and feel to watchOS that did not arrive until the launch of the second generation watch at the end of September.”

“Google’s decision to hold back Android Wear 2.0 has repercussions for its OEM partners as to whether to launch devices before or after the holidays.”

“Samsung’s Gear S3, announced at IFA in September, has yet to be released. Collectively, this left vendors relying on older, aging devices to satisfy customers.”

More to the point, Jitesh Ubrani senior research analyst for IDC Mobile Device Trackers, explained it this way:

“It has also become evident that at present smartwatches are not for everyone.”

Without doubt, smartwatches have their place. Some people want them and others need them. But is it Apple’s successor device to its iPhone miracle? Nope. That was just superbly managed propaganda that the financial media gobbled up without second thought about reality, solely focused on driving Apple’s share price higher. But it didn’t last long: shares peaked two months later.

Now reality sets in: the smartwatch is no different from other consumer products, and selling it is a tough, ultra-competitive slog amid crummy demand and very limited interest from consumers.

More from the high-flying tech sector: Global PC shipments fell 3.9% in the third quarter, thus continuing the methodical decline of the entire ecosystem. But beneath the surface: shipments of boring brands rose worldwide and soared in the US, while shipments of cool Macs plunged. A classic case of channel stuffing? Read… Apple Mac Shipments Plunge, even as PC Shipments Rise from the Dead



Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on Google+Share on RedditPrint this pageEmail this to someone

  94 comments for “Smartwatch is Dead, Market Implodes, Apple Watch Shipments Collapse

  1. Big Duke
    October 24, 2016 at 12:54 pm

    I suspected the Apple Watch to be a colossal failure. Speaking of colossal failures, I’m still surprised Tesla stock is still holding fairly well despite Musk trying to bailout Solar City and all Musk’s hype and snake oil charm. Tesla stock has to implode sometime…..too much over promising and under delivering. I cautioned a friend not to buy a $100K Tesla due to all its quality problems. In one week since owing it, been towed once to the repair garage and now has brake issues and going back to the garage.

    • interesting
      October 24, 2016 at 1:37 pm

      In a true free market i don’t think Telsa is viable. It’s more like a fad.

      • Gerald Stehura
        October 25, 2016 at 9:41 am

        Tesla is about developing an electric car and efficient batteries along with a viable solar energy company based in the United States not China. We are living in the age of Climate Chaos, the most dangerous ecosystem collapse that human beings have ever faced. The consequences are here now for anyone with a functioning brain to observe. This is why Tesla is going to be an important company for our future on this planet.
        PS: if I sound like a scare monger, I am. We would all be frightened about our future. We are not in control… we never where.

        • D Boon
          October 25, 2016 at 3:35 pm

          Gerald-

          I came out of my lurker hole to address your comment. I have seen you make these climate statecomments in the past. While I agree that the earth seems to be getting warmer, I am highly doubtful that it is directly related to carbon dioxide being poisonous or functioning as a greenhouse gas.

          Consider the findings of geologists and anthropologists, who claim that sea level is rising because the current ice age is still ending. Aquatic fossils across the North American continent suggest that this land has been underwater before (and for long periods of time). Nat Geo magazine used to include maps of North America from the Jurassic and Triassic periods (long before carbon gases were released into the atmosphere). I read them as a kid, so I have a tendency to get fired up when people claim that stuff.

          Anyways, I don’t hate nature or the earth. I do believe that man has an effect on his environment (and a responsibility of stewardship). This particular climate change concept is a scam designed to enrich the usual suspects. Real scientific research and experimentation is the answer (so that we can solve real problems)- not the repetition of scientifically dubious concepts such as the greenhouse nature of CO2…

          In the near term, I am much more worried about the prospect of endless war (not just the same war we have waged for the last 15 years in Afghanistan, mind you) and new ones to come. 2 million dead in Iraq, even more people displaced. War is killing people now (as it has for all of my life) – you can’t say that about CO2… well, you can, but you would be wrong. Cheers!

        • urdsama
          October 27, 2016 at 5:11 pm

          While I do believe the Earth is at a crisis point due to the activities of mankind, Tesla is too little too late. It is not an important part of our future but a harmful relic of our past. As long as we continue to believe that everyone can have their own car or private mode of transport (besides human powered ones), we will fail to make any meaningful strides towards the issues that face us.

    • MC
      October 24, 2016 at 1:46 pm

      Tesla is propped up by two things.
      First of all, investors are still willing to give them their money despite the fact it’s apparent no technology Tesla has is unique and is diving in the very crowded and very tough field of self-driving vehicles. Financial repression will do that to people’s judgement.
      Second, if you are a US taxpayer, congratulations: you are implicitly guaranteeing Tesla Motors. After GM and Chrysler were bailed out in 2008/2009, US automakers just know in case of a crisis a bailout is just a phone call away.

      • Petunia
        October 24, 2016 at 2:05 pm

        Musk is the only person in the American market doing anything even mildly creative. If I had to “invest”, some of the money would go to his projects, a pure bet on him.

        • NotSoSure
          October 24, 2016 at 2:30 pm

          “Creativity is in the eyes of the beholder.” Just because he is creative, does not mean he has to use taxpayer’s money.

        • Petunia
          October 24, 2016 at 2:36 pm

          Musk isn’t forcing the govt to sponsor him. They are obviously interested in what he is doing. The govt gives out the research money and tax incentives, that’s not his fault.

        • NotSoSure
          October 24, 2016 at 2:47 pm

          @Petunia. Whatever. Was there a Proposition on whether we want to invest in his company? And if we are investing, why does the return accrue only to him?

          He is a crony capitalist, plain and simple.

        • Kevin Lohse
          October 24, 2016 at 2:54 pm

          Entrepreneurs with their hands in the public purse can be very creative. Experience suggests that while many of them end up personally wealthy, not many of them are productive.

        • polecat
          October 24, 2016 at 3:54 pm

          You mean like those ‘burning and exploding’ wonder vehicles of his … ???

          ..puts a whole new meaning to the term ‘creative destruction’ !! ‘:]

        • walter map
          October 24, 2016 at 5:12 pm

          “Musk is the only person in the American market doing anything even mildly creative.”

          U.S. auto designers and engineers do extremely creative work, stuff you wouldn’t believe. They’ve come up with very futuristic stuff, and have been for decades.

          It’s just that the execs aren’t dumb enough to experiment with a mature market. Nobody wants to be responsible for the next Edsel, or DeLorean for that matter. One billion-dollar marketing fiasco can ruin your whole day.

        • marty
          October 24, 2016 at 7:35 pm

          You could call it creative. I call it a scam. He’s full of it. Ain’t nobody going to mars in 5 years or ever. solar city is a total scam. the numbers never worked. and the only reason why tesla appears to “work” is he’s tapped into the waaay cooool tech lovers who have been allowing apple to continue their scam for so long. Musk is all sizzle and no steak.

        • Kaiwen
          October 24, 2016 at 9:58 pm

          Please provide an example of Musk’s creativity – preferably one not involving gov. subsidies or financial & psychological fraud. Thank you

        • Anthony
          October 24, 2016 at 10:04 pm

          The only creative stuff Musk does is new generation fraud.

        • CrazyCooter
          October 25, 2016 at 12:36 am

          Ms. P, I normally dig your posts – but in ten years Musk is going to be a text book business school/accounting case study.

          I’ll hedge by saying it depends on who writes it!

          My two cents – the dood is a total delta-bag scammer of epic proportions – and I think the case studies will agree as much, much money will be wasted/lost/etc.

          As I have said several times on WS, the problem isn’t individuals (I like you from your posts) – it is people (on average they are fsking idiots).

          http://dilbert.com/strip/2015-04-24

          It is funny because it saves one a stack of ten or so history books (which are usually dry if you aren’t reading Durant).

          Regards,

          Cooter

        • MC
          October 25, 2016 at 1:46 am

          Here I must apologize for the firestorm I caused.

          When I said “No technology Tesla has is unique”, I meant just that. Electric cars have been around since the very early XX century: they aren’t exactly new technology and have long fascinated car manufacturers.
          Most manufacturers nowadays have electric vehicles available on some markets: BMW, Honda, Mitsubishi, Renault, Yamaha etc. Even several Chinese manufacturers have electric cars and scooters available.
          What sets Tesla apart is the marketing: if you read the financial news you’d think they are the only ones who have ever manufactured an electric car, very much like Apple and Samsung are the only ones manufacturing smartphones.

          Regarding taxpayer-funded implicit guarantees: every country is guilty bar perhaps Sweden, which allowed SAAB to go burst, a unique occurence in the XXI century.
          This doesn’t only include the manufacturers themselves, but individual assembly lines as well: France hasn’t merely helped PSA through direct cash injections, but has given Toyota several “reasons” to keep the Valenciennes assembly line open, “reasons” costing the taxpayer a lot of money either through direct layouts or lost revenue.

          My point is that Tesla is hardly unique in anything it does. Even its cash burn is not exclusive: Uber has been doing far worse, albeit for not as long.

        • Gerald Stehura
          October 25, 2016 at 9:47 am

          I think taxpayers should help Tesla create our electric car and solar energy systems. That’s a hell of a lot better than subsidizing the fossil fuels industry and spending five trillion dollars for wars without end.

        • Gerry
          October 27, 2016 at 7:53 pm

          Musk is creative as is a magician. His thee card trick is super creative, slight of hand to be admired but still dishonest.

      • discgman
        October 24, 2016 at 2:30 pm

        Like we already bail out big oil and gas, so why not pay for something cleaner with our tax dollars, right?

      • Ethan in Northern VA
        October 24, 2016 at 4:03 pm

        My limited experience riding in a Tesla… it was bad ass! Nice cars, very innovative. I like them, and they’re shaking up the market.

        *Not an Elon Musk worshipper

      • Randy
        October 24, 2016 at 9:45 pm

        There’s more than implied USG financial backing. There’s REAL USG financing. The DOE generously gives Tesla our money to produce the cars. The DOE subsidies amount to several thousand per car. Then, the DOE generously gives the buyer our money. I have to say, It makes me feel warm and fuzzy knowing I’m paying rich guys to buy a $100k+ car that goes, what, a hundred miles on a charge. That means the car can’t get more than 50 miles from home or it’ll have to be towed home. I LOVE IT!.

        • Kaiwen
          October 24, 2016 at 10:01 pm

          Fantastic vignette of the Musk con job!

        • John k
          October 24, 2016 at 10:57 pm

          Of course you know gov donates billions in tax breaks to the fossil industry, including but not limited to the depletion allowance giveaway, probably now above a trillion over the years, right?
          And you want a level playing field of course? And beyond global warning, nobody would dispute that fossil fuel pollutes.
          I fully support what he’s doing with cars and batteries.
          Granted, a man on Mars is a massive wasteful boondoggle, but this is nasa’s brainchild to continue the gravy train for their vast army of workers. Why shouldn’t he compete with existing military suppliers for those contracts? I suppose you agree that more competition will reduce what gov pays while boosting quality…

        • night-train
          October 25, 2016 at 3:38 am

          Where do you folks think the research which gave us the natural gas and shale oil revolutions came from? DOE. I considered taking a job on a coalbed methane and shale pilot project funded with DOE money in 1985.

      • Kevin
        October 25, 2016 at 1:00 am

        I’d give a thumbs up to Elon Musk (even though I own no shares of Tesla or Solar City).

        You guys are just criticizing his efforts just because you’re losers who are doing nothin’ with your own lives.

        1) Elon is a self-made man and he made his own money from his initial wise investments and work in Paypal and others. So, what’s wrong with that? At least he is a far better person than those who inherited their wealth without any economic contributions to society,

        He is already a Billionaire before his Tesla ventures, so he can more than afford to relax and sit on his ass for the rest of his life. Yet, you guys are criticizing him for taking action to DO something and contribute to humankind? Whether he succeeds or fails, I’d say what he does in terms of engineering and innovation is far more useful and significant than what the Wall Streeters and Bankster did for the past decades.

        2) Was sending man to the Moon useful? Just as the Space rance generated a whole lot of downstream innovations and ew products and ideas. Even if Tesla fails, the spark that he generated will inspire new and better future products and ideas that will benefit society as a whole.

        3) Elon is making the next leap forward on behalf of all you lazy bums. He is attempting new energy formats, transportation as well as space travel. Yes, he is getting some tax breaks and public money OFFERED to him, and rightly so, because he should be given some help in pushing the boundaries of innovation and actually DOING something economically useful and productive.

        Would you folks rather the government give money to Fat Cat Wall Streeters who basically just use the money in their financial Casinos? ir to Bail-Out or Bail-In zombie banks? or pay-out some politicians and congress?

        • Petunia
          October 25, 2016 at 7:43 am

          You said it better than I did, thanks.

        • Graham
          October 25, 2016 at 9:16 am

          I went off Musk when he said he’s get an atmosphere on Mars started with atomic bombs.

          It was purely because any schoolboy knows that a planetary atmosphere is a function of its magnetic field, throwing a bunch of gas into the atmosphere is simply pissing into the Solar Wind.

          If he doesn’t know basics like that what else doesn’t he know?

      • Michael Fiorillo
        October 25, 2016 at 6:16 am

        As one of the “little people” who pay taxes, I’m proud to be able to subsidize the status-seeking of those Meritocrats in Silicon Valley. That’s innovation, baby!

        Oh, and what was that about the potential/embedded energy of a Tesla (the battery in particular) compared to an internal combustion vehicle?

    • DV
      October 26, 2016 at 8:19 am

      Once people start sueying Tesla, potential customers will become much more aware of the short-comings. It is still not clear how they are going to deal with the aging batteries. I would suspect that those will nedd to be replaced pretty much after the same time as in cell phones.

    • ManAboutDallas
      October 27, 2016 at 11:08 am

      Never underestimate the stupidity and gullibility of illiterate, incapable-of-critical-thinking Americans possessing too much money and not enough brains.

  2. Otto Maddox
    October 24, 2016 at 1:27 pm

    Why did sales collapse? Because even smart watches are a dumb idea, Apple or no Apple.

    • Dan Romig
      October 24, 2016 at 5:09 pm

      Yup. I have a nice Seiko automatic that’s as accurate as a Rolex, cost $100 from Amazon four years ago ($300 retail in theory) and by golly, when I look at it, I can tell what time it is.

      My HTC phone does what I need/want and I do not understand the attraction to Apple Watch. Although a couple of my buds have them and love ’em???

      • Fred Hayek
        October 24, 2016 at 9:18 pm

        Do they love the watches as much as they love how *special* the watches make them feel and, they hope, seem to others?

        • Dan Romig
          October 25, 2016 at 6:13 am

          Good question Fred. I think they like having the ‘newest cutting edge technology’ as part of the attraction. One of my buds is at NDSU studying computer science, and he writes programs and apps-both for school projects and personal enjoyment-so I understand his attraction to the Apple Watch.

          Most of my colleagues I work with simply look at their smart phone and don’t want to wear a watch to tell what time it is.

      • October 25, 2016 at 7:30 am

        I think the i-watch is just a toy for the super-geek. Now that they all have one……..

        As for the tesla, I see a bunch of them on the roads, and I see some on the interstate. There must be a way for people to charge them. The 50 mile statement made above is just wrong, they go more than that.

        I don’t mind so much being forced to invest in something that may be of benefit to all some time in the future. I do get upset being forced to fund the f-35 and all that crap. I would rather see the pile of cash burned in a big fire – streamed on my anti-smart watch naturally….

      • Les Francis
        October 26, 2016 at 2:11 am

        Unfortunately there’s a bad anomaly when it comes to Seiko vs Rolex.
        I have some fine Seiko automatic chronographs bought in the late seventies. I also have a Rolex Chronometer bought in 1981.

        The Seiko chronographs need servicing and some new parts. Parts are unavailable. The only long term parts Seiko keep are for the Grand Seiko and even then I’m willing to bet you may not get original 1970’s Grand Seiko parts. In contrast every part for a Rolex can be obtained going back to ancient models.

        Here’s the caveat. I need a new bracelet for my Rolex – the old one expanded and broke. A new bracelet costs more than the original price I paid for the whole watch back in 1981. As a result the Rolex sits in a drawer – along with my un-serviceable Seikos and Citizens.

        My Amercian 1964 Hamilton Thin-o-matic works just fine and parts are obtainable anywhere.

        Back on topic. Telsa is an expensive tax payer funded fad.
        If the big automotive boys get really attentive to electric powered vehicles, Tesla will be left for dead.

    • October 25, 2016 at 12:22 am

      Bingo. The whole idea is baffling.

    • Meme Imfurst
      October 25, 2016 at 8:07 am

      “Why did sales collapse? Because even smart watches are a dumb idea, Apple or no Apple.”

      Yep. A friend of mine was at a big important meeting and during the break several went to the men’s room. Damn thing started vibrating at the wrong moment, he jumped back and got his friend inoculated just above the shoelace.

  3. MC
    October 24, 2016 at 1:41 pm

    “But is it Apple’s successor device to its iPhone miracle? Nope. That was just superbly managed propaganda that the financial media gobbled up without second thought about reality, solely focused on driving Apple’s share price higher.”

    Here I must bow down as this is the best phrase about the financial media I’ve ever read.

  4. doug
    October 24, 2016 at 1:44 pm

    The Garmin Fenix 3HR is an awesome “smart” watch. Built in heart rate monitor and GPS provides accurate real-time data your run, ride, swim, hike, whatever, even treadmill. Does everything I want and nothing i dont. It doesnt even spy on me! I waited patiently for its release and couldnt be happier. That being said, you couldnt pay me to wear an iwatch.

    • chris Hauser
      October 25, 2016 at 9:45 am

      yep, garmin is a watch, apple is a phone.

      perversely, the relative failure of the iwatch will add to earnings. don’t ask me how, it just does.

      if apple had a brain, they’d buy garmin.

  5. Petunia
    October 24, 2016 at 1:46 pm

    I bought an android smartwatch for my son last Xmas, it was the cool gift. He wears it but is not trilled with its very limited functionality. Recently he bought himself a regular watch as his other watch. He doesn’t always want something lighting up and beeping/vibrating on his arm.

  6. Paulo
    October 24, 2016 at 2:00 pm

    Awesome article.

    When I saw Jim Cramer one day holding up his watch and talking it up on TV I knew the writing was on the wall for this product.

    Whenever I see people asking for the time they seem to always grab for their phones. If you have a smart phone that has everything but birth control, why would you need a smart watch as well?

    I do not have a smart phone, let alone one of their watches. When people find this out they invariably say two things, “It must be nice”, and, “I couldn’t live without my phone”. Try it, it’s pretty nice. My watch is a Timex Ironman, and works quite well when I am swimming or banging nails. I think I paid fifty bucks for it and they usually last about 10 years. If I want to know my freaking heart rate I could always take my pulse, I suppose. Otherwise, sweating means I’m working too hard and being out of breath usually indicates it’s time for a break. I don’t think people need a smart watch to figure this out, even idiots. Phone call alerts? I’ll be answering the phone after dinner.

    • Frederick
      October 24, 2016 at 2:35 pm

      Better still Paulo I dont own a phone nor do I desire to My wife has a ten year old Siemens phone that works fine when we need it And the best part nobody can bother me when Im in the garden or out on the boat

    • WoogieBoogie
      October 25, 2016 at 2:41 am

      You made my day: “If I want to know my freaking heart rate I could always take my pulse, I suppose. Otherwise, sweating means I’m working too hard and being out of breath usually indicates it’s time for a break. I don’t think people need a smart watch to figure this out, even idiots.”

    • Dan Romig
      October 25, 2016 at 6:44 am

      Heart rate monitors are useful for athletes in both training and competition. If you are riding a time-trial bicycle during a race, there’s a fine line between staying at your aerobic limit and going ‘red-line’ into anaerobic melt down. The difference can be as small as 170 bpm to 175.

      Now there are power meters that can tell riders how many watts they’re pumping out too, and added to heart rate this can be quite helpful for maintaing maximum output and speed.

      In general, I do agree with you though Paulo. Since I retired from competition long ago, I just ride my bike as fast as I can within my limits. No need for technology as I do my daily workout.

    • Gerald Stehura
      October 25, 2016 at 9:57 am

      Tesla electric cars are getting over 200 miles per charge. The future is electric cars unless Climate Chaos collapses our ecosystem before we can transition to clean energy. We have wasted 50 years in denial. Time to wake up! The alarm is ringing!

  7. Nik
    October 24, 2016 at 2:31 pm

    Aloha Friends…so,what you are saying is….its ‘time’ to get out of the Smart-watch business….? lololol aloha

  8. robt
    October 24, 2016 at 3:16 pm

    The funniest story that went viral was that Apple was going to use 2/3 of the world’s gold supply for their watches.
    The only controversy seemed to be how much gold would be used in each watch, so maybe it would be less or more than 800 tons of gold a year.

  9. Sound of the Suburbs
    October 24, 2016 at 3:18 pm

    The innovative Apple:

    One innovation – the iPod developed up to the iPod touch

    iPad – big iPod touch

    iPhone – mobile phone combined with iPod touch

    • Ethan in Northern VA
      October 24, 2016 at 4:05 pm

      Don’t forget the Magsafe connector! You can’t deny it’s a good idea!

  10. VegasBob
    October 24, 2016 at 3:44 pm

    It’s really rather amusing watching people move from fad to fad to fad.

    I think a lot of it started with the “Pet Rock” back in the 1980s. At the time, I observed that a lot of people were willing to throw away a lot of money on an essentially useless product.

    I viewed the Apple Watch as a similar fad, albeit the watch has far more functionality than a Pet Rock.

    As for Elon Musk, he’s the P.T. Barnum of the 21st century – lots of grandiose ideas accompanied by an army of gullible suckers willing to finance those ideas.

    The new fads are not really all that different than the old fads.

    • night-train
      October 25, 2016 at 3:46 am

      VB: Fads long preceded the Pet Rock. Throughout my youth, yo-yos were a fad that came around every couple of years. I found my old Duncan Imperial just a couple of days ago. Raccoon coats and pocket flasks in days of yore. Now, if we could just figure out what’s next and get in on the ground floor. :)

    • October 25, 2016 at 7:03 am

      I bought an Apple Newton in 1996. Totally u s e l e s s (the handwriting recognition was unbelievably bad). My idea was to send faxes ha ha.

      Now they are ending the support for their I-Phone 4S? That’s great, as I just bought one on Ebay.com Built in and planned obsolescence? Another digital wastemaker!

    • October 25, 2016 at 7:40 am

      ” It’s really rather amusing watching people move from fad to fad to fad.

      I think a lot of it started with the “Pet Rock” back in the 1980s. At the time, I observed that a lot of people were willing to throw away a lot of money on an essentially useless product. ”

      Ha Ha – I call smart phones – Pet Rocks !

      .

  11. Bobcat
    October 24, 2016 at 3:49 pm

    The Apple Smart Watch reminds me of the early LED watches made back in ’70s. You had to press a button to see the time. They couldn’t leave the display on continuously because the power consumption of LED displays back then was high enough to quickly drain the battery.

    As soon as the novelty of the digital display wore off, people quit wearing them and went back to analog watches. LCD watches came along much later and didn’t suffer from that limitation. Then digital watches caught on.

    What new capability does the Apple watch give you? An adjunct to your iPhone? So you can take calls on your watch like Dick Tracy?

    • Michael Fiorillo
      October 25, 2016 at 6:22 am

      This probably belongs on an “end-of-life-as-we-know-it thread,” but I’m a high school teacher and we have large numbers of students who can no longer read analog clocks, or maps.

      • Petunia
        October 25, 2016 at 7:49 am

        If you want to have some fun with your students, bring an old rotary phone to class, they have no idea how it works.

        • Petunia
          October 25, 2016 at 7:50 am

          BTW, I recently spent some time teaching my millennial how a record player works. No kidding.

        • robt
          October 25, 2016 at 8:50 am

          Dialing takes forever … I once got a supplier to change his phone number to small numbers so I could dial faster …

    • MC
      October 25, 2016 at 6:26 am

      I think that’s the main selling point, albeit I’d rather have something that made look like Batman.

  12. polecat
    October 24, 2016 at 4:12 pm

    People in the future are going to wonder at all the disposable, useless junk and drivel, like I-shite and Androids … Facebook and Twitter, to name just a few examples, these so-called ‘titans of ‘technology’ have pawned onto an increasingly gullible and narcissistic culture ……. and question how humanity lost it’s fucking mind!

    • WTFrogg
      October 24, 2016 at 6:33 pm

      Get it right: Farcebook and Fritter LOL.

      Every time I see people lining up for hours just to get the “latest & greatest” from Apple I think to myself: ” Gee, these people need to get a life.”
      These same people would probably bitch like crazy if they had to wait 2 seconds too long for their skinny latte mocha choka blast.

      Quite happy with my Nokia S60 ( Data optional) and Timex Ironman. ;)

    • Mike B
      October 24, 2016 at 9:32 pm

      People in the future?

      Hell, I ask that question NOW

  13. ML
    October 24, 2016 at 4:19 pm

    I haven’t worn a wristwatch for about 50 years. Gosh was it that long ago? Gosh am I really that old? Want to know the time? Look at the Sun. Or more likely any one of the clocks that are included in gadgets such as a smart phone or the car or even the central heating boiler control switch. Or ask someone. Most people do not spend much time looking at their own watches, being asked for the time gives them something to do.

    • roddy6667
      October 24, 2016 at 9:00 pm

      I haven’t worn a watch since pagers were cutting edge.

      • night-train
        October 25, 2016 at 3:49 am

        I couldn’t afford a pager. I just stuck a garage door opener on my belt to look “cool”.

  14. Chicken
    October 24, 2016 at 4:39 pm

    It’s amazing how easily people are amused. I was 10 I think, when I was given a TI LED watch for Christmas.

  15. bead
    October 24, 2016 at 5:24 pm

    What were people supposed to do with watches? Tell time, sure. I guess you could monitor your unit if that’s your fun. Otherwise, do you talk to them? Do the watches talk to you? Do you type into them? Shop for shoes? Always seemed like a strange idea.

  16. October 24, 2016 at 5:38 pm

    Time.

    Who has time for all these things.

    Between hundreds of emails, text messages, notifications from Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Whatsapp, Viber, Messenger, all sorts of other apps.

    I have a couple of phones, and just getting all these notifications during an average day usually has them flat by leave time from the office without even actually accessing the phone!

    Who has time?

  17. Ptb
    October 24, 2016 at 5:52 pm

    I just dumped my iPhone and got an android phone. I like it and it was $30. A smart watch? You gotta be pretty dim to buy a smart watch.

  18. walter map
    October 24, 2016 at 6:05 pm

    Believe it or not, there really are limits to the fads people can get suckered into. Now that Apple has a better idea as to what those limits may be, they can recalibrate and work on the next one.

    I’m going to go read my book now, confident in the knowledge that it’s not on a mission to weasel me into buying something, or make me chase links in cyberspace, or try to grab my gonads with a photoshopped, underdressed, excessively mammalian young lovely. I don’t have to plug it in, or recharge it, or change its password, and it will never get hacked.

    It might waste my time, but I won’t know that until I’ve read it. It’s loaner from the library.

    Peace and quiet appeal to me. Life is good. To me, “apple” is still a fruit, properly served with sugar and cinnamon in a kind of pastry, and it will stay that way.

    • polecat
      October 24, 2016 at 7:01 pm

      Oh My God ! …. a book with real pages made of paper ……

      You sir are a LUDDITE !! …..**

      ** we’re pretty book heavy in our household too … ‘:]

      • walter map
        October 24, 2016 at 7:21 pm

        I’m not a Luddite, but I do have one thing Apple et al. cannot offer.

        All I want is to have my peace of mind.

  19. Ricardo
    October 24, 2016 at 6:06 pm

    My watch is the sun and the only thing I have on my wrist is human hair. My phone is a trusty old black Nokai that when dropped it pops out its parts which you just put back together.
    My wife and I even lived without electricity for one whole year. I admit this is in the tropics where you don’t need heat for warmth and you can cook using charcoal or firewood but waking up with the sun and going to bed when its sun down gives you a whole new outlook on living.

  20. Schuler
    October 24, 2016 at 7:52 pm

    I tried logging in to Facebook on my Rolex GMT….didn’t work, dammit.

  21. Julian the Apostate
    October 24, 2016 at 8:02 pm

    I on the other hand am a clock fanatic. I have multiple mechanical clocks some inherited and some I’ve bought. I own several mechanical watches as well from a Rolex to a Benrus. My current work watch is a $12.99 Walmart no/name special that keeps perfect time and has the day/date function. (Trucking is a superstitious sect, great observers of set times and dates, with apologies to Ben Franklin) I would buy a reproduction LED watch in a heartbeat. But the iWatch? Meh. Never thought it would fly. Would like to own a dumb repeater though. They went the way of buggy whips, but man what a cool toy. Or a Thomas Thompion tall clock, if I ever hit the lottery and somebody was stupid enough to sell one. He only built about 600 of them. Bibliophiles of the World unite!

    • Schuler
      October 24, 2016 at 8:09 pm

      @ Julian the Apostate–I have an original Pulsar P3 and P4, two of the earliest LED’s, and they look soooo cool today, 40 years later!….

    • Ricardo
      October 24, 2016 at 8:37 pm

      Looking up his details on Wikipedia those are some seriously beautiful works of art he produced.

    • Marty
      October 24, 2016 at 9:53 pm

      We used to live in MA near NH. There was a fantastic antique store that had nothing but clocks. The store was a renovated barn. The whole length was grandfather, grandmother clocks and an occasional clock mechanisms. I spent hours there.

      Clock makers were itinerant. People would often buy the workings one year to hang on the wall. The next time the clockmaker came through town, they then might have the money to buy the case and put the workings inside.

      I have always wanted to make my own tall clock, but just haven’t gotten around to it.

      • night-train
        October 25, 2016 at 3:55 am

        “I have always wanted to make my own tall clock, but just haven’t gotten around to it.” Marty, you are never going to get that thing on your wrist. :)

        I too like old mechanical clocks. Represents the age of true craftsmen. I guess they remind me of a simpler time.

    • Edward E
      October 25, 2016 at 7:32 am

      Just a note of advice to all of your clock fanatics, always keep a singing bird clock in a separate room from any windmill clock.

  22. Howard Beale IV
    October 24, 2016 at 10:53 pm

    I like my Pebble 2. Nice being able to see text messages and incoming alerts without having to whip out my phone-and at 1/3rd the price of the bleeding Apple watch, it’s worth it. The smartwatch was always going to be a niche market (Sony Ericsson was there long before the others), and all of these yahoos thinking it was going to be the next big thing has their heads up their asses.

  23. d
    October 25, 2016 at 3:08 am

    In the side ways economy the crowd buying the expensive “Must haves” is shrinking.

    Appl watch (in fact all smart watches) has not made it out of the must have stream, to the main stream. The delivery numbers tell us this.

    Perhaps it/they never will.

    Tell me what a smart watch does, than a $20.00 smart phone doesn’t. That’s important, that I need.

    Then tell me the difference between them, after they have both been at the bottom of a bucket full of water for a while.

    • polecat
      October 25, 2016 at 10:30 am

      Obviously not waterproof down to 20 meters …..’:]

  24. Graham
    October 25, 2016 at 5:28 am

    Oooh – a decent colour LCD watch, now I can make the same watch look like Big Ben, or a Rolex or Breitling – or even an antique Longines!!

    Except – probably for sue-age reasons, you can’t put 3rd party faces on an Apple Watch. At the point Apple decided to restrict the faces it was dead in the water, and they best have packed up and instead worked on the technological white-hot-edge of how to equip the Macbook 12 with more than a single (useless) connector. Or a Mac Mini with upgradeable memory. I mean – how difficult could it be?

    In Apple stores I walk past the (abandoned) racks of super-nerdy crummy watches to check if Apple has added a connector and walk out again. Further in the Mall I usually stop to look at the latest Seiko Solar, Casio Edifice or Rotary automatic though, that have cool moving shiny bits, nice colours and retail for a fraction of the price.

  25. walter map
    October 25, 2016 at 7:38 am

    One has to wonder why companies would keep coming up with all these new devices to waste time and money when the old devices were working so well. Apparently it is because it is profitable to sell people into electronic slavery, especially in the resale market.

    Once people figure out that the most efficient ways to waste time and money require no devices at all, these tech companies are toast.

    • Edward E
      October 25, 2016 at 8:36 am

      I’m great at multitasking. I can waste time, be unproductive, and procrastinate all at once. Well enough of that, gotta run…the Menards grand opening in Hollister, Mizzourah is on, time waits for no man – time must be a female

  26. Gerald Stehura
    October 25, 2016 at 10:05 am

    Never owned a smart watch. Never owned a smart phone. Don’t text. I seem to be a healthy, active and happy 74 year old human being. I can even talk to people face to face.

    • polecat
      October 25, 2016 at 10:35 am

      Ah …… But can they talk back ….. and in a cogent and intelligent manner ??

  27. Julian the Apostate
    October 25, 2016 at 6:18 pm

    I got to observe a Thompion tall clock running at the Time Museum in Rockford IL a few years ago. The interval on the pendulum swing was about double that of a modern tall clock. I fell instantly in love with it. No mass production here, just lovingly hand crafted. Alas, the Museum is gone now its collection scattered to the four winds. But for a very brief time I was transported to 18th century England. It is moments like that one that make me think I have the best job in the world 🤓

  28. Julian the Apostate
    October 25, 2016 at 6:26 pm

    P.S. To Schuler: you are a lucky dog. Rock on!

Comments are closed.