Apres Watch, le deluge


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The Macalope's gonna be honest with you, it was really hard to pick just three this week. The deluge of dumb that resulted from this week's Apple announcements. But let's skim the... well, not the cream. What's under the cream? Is it cheese? Let's just say it's cheese. Because these are super-cheesy reactions.

Figures of speech

Writing for Tiger Beat in the Valley, John Koetsier has the definitive word on the Apple Watch.

"Apple Watch is ugly and boring (and Steve Jobs would have agreed)" (tip o' the antlers to Jeff Kauffman)

Sure. It's reasonable to believe that John Koetsier—who has called Apple a "loser" and compared it to BlackBerry and said the Microsoft Surface was "Completely. A. Home. Run."—would have the slightest idea what Steve Jobs would think about something. Uh-huh. Nothing wrong there. Totally OK that he actually wrote that without exploding.

It’s not clear at all what Apple has redefined with Watch...a pretty basic looking been-there-done-that smartwatch.

Sure, they're all doing mobile payments and have big name companies making apps for them.

What do most contemporary smartwatches have in common?

They’re mostly squarish, clunky, bulky, flat things with a screen that go on your wrist.

Except Apple's 38mm version is probably the smallest. And its bands are the most attractive. And its software is probably the best. And it seems easier to navigate. And probably a bunch of other things. But other than that, identical.

One other thing: They also don’t sell very well.

So far, anyway.

So far.

Part of the problem, perhaps, is that the art and imagination unleashed in the two-year build-up to Apple Watch were so good.

Koetsier then goes on to show two concepts that he admits are probably impossible to make with current technology.

But we expect Apple to break boundaries.

Such as the boundaries of reality. Sure. And who cares if they tear the fabric of space/time open?! Not our problem!

At the very real risk of being crass, does the design of Apple Watch make you “sh** in your pants,” like some of the design concepts created for iWatch do?

The Macalope's not sure you know what the "risk of being crass" actually means. None of the Apple watch concepts the Macalope's seen—including the two that Koetsier shows—have made him soil himself even figuratively. The Macalope's not even sure how to soil himself figuratively. Although he does usually feel like he needs a shower after reading Venture Beat. So, it's probably something like that.

Old dog, old tricks

If you tried to watch the livestream of Tuesday's event, you know it was somewhat problematic. One PC Magazine pundit called it "Apple's Travesty of a 'Live' Event." (Link? Are you kidding? Tip o' the antlers to @JonyIveParody.)

Before the Macalope tells you who this is, let's see if you can guess based on the opening paragraph.

The rollout of the Apple iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus was something of a disaster insofar as its streaming of the event was concerned. It was a major gaffe; a total embarrassment for Tim Cook.

Yeah, it's John C. Dvorak. The Macalope would have given partial credit if you guessed Rob Enderle.

The glitches that occurred in the live stream were annoying and, let's face it, kind of unforgivable for a company of Apple's caliber. On the other hand, will they have any kind of lasting impact on the company? No. So, the Macalope knows any mistake made by Apple is terribly exciting for you, John, but try to keep your pants on.

None of this bodes well for Apple cloud services or anything Apple does that that involves scaling up to handle more users.

Well, the Macalope doesn't really see why as none of this used Apple's cloud service but, sure, let's go ahead and conflate everything that happens on the Internet.

One thing that always bothers me is the attention the iPhone camera gets.

Yeah! Who uses the camera on an iPhone? Psh.

The only good thing they do is allow citizens to take more and more videos of crimes.

Man, this old-man-yelling-at-a-cloud shtick is really wearing thin.

After the ads, my greatest fear was near realized...

This column is the Macalope's greatest fear: John Dvorak narrating an Apple event.

...with Apple Pay.

OK, the Macalope will bite. Why?

This is paying for things with a phone and having the phone company do the bill collecting.

What does the phone company have to do with it? The phone company doesn't have anything to do with the transaction, it's between you, Apple, and the retailer.

The problem: this system will eventually be usurped by the phone companies.

"I have done zero research and I feel confident in making this statement."

Yes, there was the expected watch, dubbed the Apple Watch. Yawn.

The Macalope will just throw this on the bonfire of your past comments about Apple product announcements, right between "Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone" and "the MacBook Air... is unlikely to be much of a success."

It is simply not that much different than the other watches—or an iPod nano for that matter.

An iPod nano. You're comparing the Apple Watch to a device that could not connect to anything while it's on your wrist. A device that couldn't do messaging and doesn't do payments and are you even trying at all anymore?

The 'live" watch demo seemed like it was rigged since there is no evidence that you could do a screen share that worked so well.

Sure. They rigged it. The Watch isn't even real! Life is an illusion!

Guess what? I'm not going to go buy an Apple Watch.


The Macalope wonders what PC Magazine thinks is the point in having Dvorak discuss Apple. Is it a joke? A troll? Whatever it is, it clearly isn't analysis.

Freaking out

You might be wondering how the fashion industry people are taking Apple's Watch announcement.

Writing for Time, fashion reporter Misty White Sidell says "Apple Is Killing the Joy of Personal Style" (tip o' the antlers again to @JonyIveParody).

So...not well, then.

Considering that the Apple Watch comes in only three near-identical face styles and half a dozen band-types, his commentary is not so different from Henry Ford’s reassurance that “people can have the Model T in any color—so long as it’s black.”

First of all, this is just wrong. The Apple Watch comes in three different lines—Watch, Sport and Edition—but each line comes in two different colors and two sizes. The Macalope counts four Watch styles (two colors, two sizes), four Sport styles and six Edition styles. Yes, they all have the same basic shape, but 14 different styles is a bit different than three, even if most people probably can't afford six of them.

As for the bands, there are five sport bands, 10 everyday bands and four Edition bands, not to mention the fact that bands are probably a huge opportunity for third-party manufacturers. The other thing to consider is the watch face. Scroll through Apple's Watch gallery and you can see numerous face options—including a famous cartoon mouse—and it's likely more will be coming. If anything, this watch has more options for personalization than any watch you've ever owned.

Let's do the math here. 14 watches times 19 bands times a bunch of faces...carry the two...well, the Macalope doesn't actually have a calculator on him or any math skills but it's a lot.

... when you consider its potential social footprint, as well as Apple’s take-no-prisoners approach to product introductions, the device’s shape, colorways, and embellishments become a mandate, rather than a personal choice.

Soon, Apple's jack-booted thugs will be arriving at your door to strap an Apple Watch to your wrist. Resistance is futile.

Anyway, look on the bright side: it could have been a Motorola 360.

... its combination of cachet, tech functionality, and millions of Apple fanatics who consistently drink the company’s Kool-Aid...

Pro tip for those working on analogies involving cults from the 1970s: people who "drink the Kool-Aid" are dead and therefore cannot buy products.

In a worst-case scenario for fashion, Apple will not only attain a monopoly on the timepiece market, but also the confidence to wield a larger impact on how we dress ourselves each day.

A monopoly on the timepiece market? You have to own an iPhone to use an Apple Watch. Apple's smartphone market share is something like 15 percent, if you don't read Business Insider.

The watch is no doubt an indication of how Apple will approach future fashion products, offering the masses a constrictive framework in which to dress themselves, all under the guise of customizable “self-expression.”

So, the watch is customizable and comes in a number of faces and is aimed at a small portion of the market, but all that is a ruse for implementing its "constrictive framework" on world fashion which, God knows, isn't something the fashion industry has been doing since togas were in style.

And maybe that's the problem. Just like it did with cellphones, Apple's busting into a business with entrenched interests.

Aw, snap. You just got disrupted.

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