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For centuries, watches have enabled people to know the time and–in some small way–to control their own destiny. But of course, the times, they are a-changin’. In the past decade alone the smartphone has fully eclipsed the power that watches once provided. An internal clock, wireless calling, and the invention of Apps and their ability to help us manage our lives have all made the smartphone an indispensable tool.

Considering that the smartphone is such an essential part of a person’s daily arsenal, inventors are seeking ways to make this technology more comfortable to carry. And since we’re about a century away from implanting brain-chips that connect our minds to the internet (right?), wearing our smartphones externally is the next logical step.

Serious Sci-fi

The very idea of Smartwatches still seems like serious sci-fi.┬áThe Smart Watch will not be a “watch”, but rather a communication device. Telling time is nothing compared to everything the Smart Watch will do. Back in the 1950s, the idea of advanced technology in a wristwatch became popularized by the Dick Tracy novels, making this a dream for many. His watch was completely voice-activated and required minimal touch… sounds familiar, right? (Hello, Siri!) And if you add our modern technology to this original idea there are limitless possibilities. For example, the dial could easily display the person to whom you’re speaking and, if we get really inventive, maybe someday it could display holographic pop-ups. The Smart Watch could also take dictated email and text messages, voice commands, GPS, the sky is the limit.

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An early version of the smartwatch.

The Next Logical Step

Haven’t you noticed watches have been getting bigger and bigger? It’s almost as if manufacturers have been toying with the idea of enabling watches to do more. And think about what Apple has done with the iMac, the iPad, the iPhone… modern life requires so much connection to the internet, to our apps, to our online communities, that the need for specialized gadgets is still a huge priority for the tech industry. Sure, some people prefer a single gadget to handle all needs (like the MacBook Air for example), but if watchmakers can find the exact need that will be solved by the Smart Watch— it will sell.

The Smartwear Revolution

The most prominent rival to the Smart Watch has to be Google’s Glass, which poses the question: Would you rather wear your phone on your eyes or on your wrist? We are all used to wearing wristwatches and glasses as part of our daily wardrobe and we have seen smart glasses and smart watches in sci-fi and other fictional works, so all we need now is for the technology to be finalized so people can begin wearing their phones however they please.

Our Professional Opinion

We here at Gray & Sons definitely believe there is room in the market for Smart Watches. However, there are some potential pitfalls to implementing this idea as a fully voice-operated tool, such as privacy issues, the discomfort of have to take calls on a speakerphone, the difficulty of double checking voice-dictated emails or text messages on the smaller dial… For the time being, having a smartwatch that simply assists your smartphone is the best we have seen. But we here at Gray & Sons cannot wait for the smartwatch to be actualized.

Sources:

Look out Dick Tracy: Are smartwatches the next big thing?

Smartwatch Rewind: From Dick Tracy and James Bond to Sony and Pebble

Smartwatches are a great idea. Except for the “Smart” and “Watch” parts