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Ask Slashdot: What Features Belong In a 'Smartwatch'?

Soulskill posted about a year and a half ago | from the anything-james-bond-had dept.

IOS 322

Nerval's Lobster writes "If the rumors are true, and Apple is indeed hard at work on a newfangled timepiece (dubbed the 'iWatch'), what unique features could such a device offer a public already overloaded with all sorts of handheld devices? Answer that question, and you're perhaps one step closer to figuring out why Apple — again, if the rumors are true — decided to devote millions of dollars and the precious hours of some very smart people in the effort. This article suggests voice control (via Siri), biometrics, mobile payments, and other possible features, but there must be loads of others that someone could think up."

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Obvious (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887505)

Track masturbatory habits.

Re:Obvious (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887781)

Lube dispensor to help when you are taking it from Apple.

iFisting (4, Funny)

Hognoxious (631665) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887999)

Apple fanboi 1: take your ring off, it's scratching my bunghole!
Apple fanboi 2: I'm not wearing a ring.
Apple fanboi 1: OK, take your watch off!

FIRST (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887513)

FIRST !!

Low cost solution (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887515)

Last gen Iphone + duct tape.

Time? (4, Insightful)

addie (470476) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887521)

Hopefully the ability to accurately tell time. But with the way phones these days work at making calls, I won't hold out much hope.

The whole idea of an iWatch just gives me a headache.

Re:Time? (5, Funny)

JustOK (667959) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887617)

You're wearing it wrong.

Re:Time? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887681)

I'm pretty sure the one thing you can sefely guarantee of an iWatch is that it definately WON'T tell the time. or possibly will only show the time in Cupertino

Re:Time? (0, Troll)

_xeno_ (155264) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887733)

Hopefully the ability to accurately tell time. But with the way phones these days work at making calls, I won't hold out much hope.

Funny you should mention it, because the iPhone keeps horrible time. Which is weird, because as I understand it, GPS requires accurate timekeeping, which means that anything with a GPS chip in it can get a very accurate time. I know that my GPS-enabled camera is capable of setting its own time off of GPS.

The iPhone, on the other hand, ignores its own GPS chip in favor - well, who knows. Apple doesn't say. All I know is that the reported iPhone time is generally anywhere from a couple of seconds to over a minute off the time reported from an NTP-synced computer.

If they're planning on making it just be a "smaller iPhone" then it probably really will be a watch that can't keep accurate time.

Re:Time? (3, Informative)

gstoddart (321705) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887919)

All I know is that the reported iPhone time is generally anywhere from a couple of seconds to over a minute off the time reported from an NTP-synced computer.

I can't speak to an iPhone, but I know my cell phone takes its time from the actual carrier.

So it's well within the bounds of reason that yours is doing the same -- and if your carrier is using a clock which is slightly different from your NTP-synced computer, that could account for the drift.

One of the things that's really nice about that, is when I travel it picks up local time and I don't need to set it.

And, slightly more on topic ... I'm clearly not the target market for this product. I can't figure out why I'd want a voice activated watch, or biometrics, or mobile payments on my watch. Then again, I wouldn't want those features on my cell phone either. This just feels like one of those technology for the sake of it products.

I'm sure there's features a lot of people will say are the coolest ever and be willing to plunk down money for it. Me, I prefer a device meant to do one thing well instead of 10 things half-assed -- which is why I own actual cameras, music players, and GPS nav units instead of something which kinda does most of those things.

It's cool in a Dick Tracy kind of way, but I prefer my watches to just be watches.

Of course, I'm sure "hey baby, want to see my iWatch" would be an awesome pickup line. So there is that. ;-)

But, as much as I absolutely hate the term, the iWatch and iPhone combo seems like it would be a flashing sign that says "hipster douchebag".

Re:Time? (1)

Obfuscant (592200) | about a year and a half ago | (#42888023)

I can't speak to an iPhone, but I know my cell phone takes its time from the actual carrier. So it's well within the bounds of reason that yours is doing the same -- and if your carrier is using a clock which is slightly different from your NTP-synced computer, that could account for the drift.

I can't imagine a cell phone not getting its time from the carrier. I also can't imagine that they'd be a minute off of real time. I do remember that T-Mobile in my area was about six seconds off, though, just enough to piss me off and make me turn off automatic time updates. Perhaps the iPhone in question has had automatic time updating turned off?

Re:Time? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887921)

If you have a need to know the time accurately to within +/- 1 minute, what are you doing? I like my watch with a blank face and just the 2 hands. Anything more accurate than that seems superfluous to me.

Re:Time? (1)

TheNinjaroach (878876) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887923)

I recently picked up an iPhone - it seems to get its time just like every other phone I've ever had: straight from the carrier.

Re:Time? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887925)

GSM requires a very accurate timesync between the tower and the phone. The problem is that the tower isn't always correct, but that's where the time is coming from usually.

Re:Time? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887993)

Care to cite where the iPhone keeps horrible time? My understanding is that most cell phones, at least within the US, have their time delivered by local cell towers.

Re:Time? (1)

avandesande (143899) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887761)

The idea is pretty dumb. The only way I can see this being useful was if the watch acted like a second screen to you ipad or iphone. I really don't see the value in a standalone device.

Re:Time? (3, Informative)

Obfuscant (592200) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887983)

Sony came out with this kind of thing several years ago for the Ericsson phones, called Liveview [sonymobile.com] . It was basically a remote display for the phone using bluetooth. I bought one assuming it would work on Android phones in general, and of course it didn't.

It was supposed to support things like Facebook and show you email alerts, along with being a basic watch. It came with a watchband and a clip housing, one of which (I forget which) completely covered the USB charging port and you had to pop it out to plug it in. It was almost working as a watch, but the limited button UI was a mess and difficult to remember/use.

Interesting concept, poor implementation.

What is most important is that it show the time (synced to the local phone network so it is accurate). Second would be incoming SMS/email (so you don't have to pull a phone out of your pocket to get messages.) Music player control. It has to have an inductive charger plus a standard USB, so you can recharge it away from home or just drop it on the charging pad at night when you aren't.

Re:Time? (1)

crazyjj (2598719) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887865)

Me: Siri, what time is it?

Siri: Okay, I'm playing Morris Day and the Time, Jungle Love...

Me: No, what TIME IS IT?

Siri: The time in London is now 9:03 p.m.

Re:Time? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887973)

You must mumble, because I don't have a problem whenever I've asked Siri the time.

Re:Time? (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42888039)

You must mumble, because I don't have a problem whenever I've asked Siri the time.

That's so odd. When I ask "Siri, do you have the time?" I always get "Not for a man like you."

Re:Time? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887881)

i hear this sometimes but i don't really get it. i've never had a problem with call quality on my iphone. is this really that big a deal? do people even USE the phone feature all that much anymore?

MyBasis (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887533)

Well, for starters, how about everything that the Basis [mybasis.com] has?

ad block (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887541)

Block Slashvertisements?

A mirror with great battery life! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887543)

I think it would be nice to pretty much just have a mirror of the actual device. Almost like remote desktop for the phone in your pocket.

Maybe a few buttons that do extra things.

Buttocks... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887545)

Lots and lots of them.

working GPS and maps.... (3, Interesting)

who_stole_my_kidneys (1956012) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887547)

it should work better than a compass , If im in the woods it should be able to tell me where i am and how to get home if Im lost. and a incredibly long battery life.

Steve Jobs' Voice... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887549)

...screaming at you every waking moment of the day.

iDiots (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887565)

Will buy anything they put out. Who needs useful features? iOS is behind in features compared to Android and even WP yet touted as the "most advanced". And people will defend that to their death. Apple is just moving closer and closer to what they have always been: A jewelry/fashion company. Doesn't matter WHAT it does. It'll make millions 'cuz its shiny.

Re:iDiots (-1, Offtopic)

the computer guy nex (916959) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887663)

Will buy anything they put out. Who needs useful features? iOS is behind in features compared to Android and even WP yet touted as the "most advanced". And people will defend that to their death. Apple is just moving closer and closer to what they have always been: A jewelry/fashion company. Doesn't matter WHAT it does. It'll make millions 'cuz its shiny.

Shiny stuff that is consistently higher performing than competitor products. The ease of use, aluminum (rather than plastic) build quality, and higher stability are just bonuses.

http://images.anandtech.com/graphs/graph6324/49988.png [anandtech.com]
http://images.anandtech.com/graphs/graph6324/49981.png [anandtech.com]
http://images.anandtech.com/graphs/graph6426/51307.png [anandtech.com]

Re:iDiots (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887791)

Consistently "higher performing" SO javascript tests written for the apple javacript engine runs faster?! Wow I'm a true convert, pass me some Jobs prayer beads. Lower resolution screen, no customization AT ALL, slow as hell compared to the HTC DNA, but I guess when Apple is slower its just an outlier right? Google voice search returns results faster than siri. And hows that apple maps working out for ya? Did they rearrange the geography for ya?

Re:iDiots (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887877)

Did they rearrange the geography for ya?

Yes :( [wikimedia.org]

Chemical sensors (3, Interesting)

i kan reed (749298) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887567)

I would love sciency things like being able to determine ozone levels, pH of the air, nitrogen/oxygen mix, alcohol detection. But that's why I'm not in charge of choosing sensors for phones.

Re:Chemical sensors (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887673)

Fart detector. With range finder so no one can hide from thier dishoner!
Fart BURN!!

Re:Chemical sensors (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887731)

Yes you could extend it to health checks, rather than taking a stool sample to your doctor you could just submerge your arm up past the watch into the toilet before flushing to have the watch check it all out for you

Testing blood though the skin viable? (1)

grimJester (890090) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887851)

I'd love to have something that could tell me the blood sugar level in real time. Alcohol level could be cool too, for getting that elusive perfect steadily rising drunkenness without blackouts or vomiting.

Re:Testing blood though the skin viable? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887957)

If it could check your blood sugar level in real time, I think that would make it pretty uncomfortable to wear.

Re:Testing blood though the skin viable? (1)

Githaron (2462596) | about a year and a half ago | (#42888097)

I guess that would depend on whether the watch actually took samples of your blood or just acted as a display for an implant transmitting the info.

Re:Testing blood though the skin viable? (1)

gstoddart (321705) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887979)

Alcohol level could be cool too, for getting that elusive perfect steadily rising drunkenness without blackouts or vomiting.

You just need to keep practicing, or stop partying with frat boys.

Razor sharp constricting iris in band... (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887575)

...in case you ever pick up an Android device.

Bluetooth! (3, Funny)

bobthesungeek76036 (2697689) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887589)

Everything is better with Bluetooth!

Re:Bluetooth! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887699)

No, no. Everything's better with cool hwip. Mmm. Cool hwip...

Companion handset (2)

Lije Baley (88936) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887599)

A good smart watch needs a bluetooth handset that looks like an ordinary cell phone. You could use it for voice calls, so as not to look like "that dork talking into his Dick Tracy wrist phone".
But I suppose people talking to their wrists would at least be slightly less annoying than the bluetooth earpiece people who are indistinguishable from the mentally ill when encountered on a city sidewalk.

Re:Companion handset (1)

MyFirstNameIsPaul (1552283) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887685)

Has something been done to reduce bluetooth device power consumption? Otherwise it's going to make for a large, geeky watch.

How about a SPY WATCH? (3, Insightful)

dav1dc (2662425) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887609)

How about some James Bond-esc features, like a: laser cutter, knife, garrote wire, etc. ??

^_^

Features for watch (1)

mrjb (547783) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887623)

Walkie talkie to call self-driving car Feature to make wearer invisible Laser beam No sharks please Please make this watch. Thank you.

here we go again (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887627)

First it was pocket watches, then someone came up with a more efficient mechanism, leading to the analog wrist-watch, so we had to upgrade
  Then came the digital watch, which had functions such as "stopwatch" and "calculator", so we had to upgrade.
Then came the cell phone, which some people (for reasons I still fail to understand) thought was more convenient for checking the time by pulling a large device out of their pocket rather than just glancing at their wrist, but still - we had to upgrade.
Now here's something new that we'll have to upgrade to.

Yeesh.

I've seen one or two arm-mounted computers on the net, but they're pretty much just PADDs strapped to the wrist. I've seen a few watches with additional features (Bluetooth linked caller ID display, camera, USB drive, multiple timezones, etc)- none of these compare to the wristwatch we currently use!

Now it's time for either a large weight on the arm or a small device linked to a larger one you'll have to carry around.

All I want from a watch (and granted I'm the kind of person who doesn't see the benefit in a smartphone over a flip phone or why cameras are needed there or irritated avians, just battery draining fluff) is an hour hand, minute hand, second hand is preferable, date function is helpful on occasion, stopwatch for running, possibly the calculator function, and finally (but this is the big one) LONG BATTERY LIFE SO I CAN BE SURE IT'LL KEEP TIME.

There are the self winding watches, those can work, but the benefit of these devices currently elude me.

I want my Dick Tracy watch (3, Insightful)

Earl The Squirrel (463078) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887637)

I want a souped up Dick Tracy [wikipedia.org] watch... with not just a speaker, but video... like this [pcmag.com]

The ability to run any app you want (1)

_xeno_ (155264) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887639)

What would the killer feature of a "smart watch" be? That depends on who's using it. So the ultimate killer feature would be the ability to use any app from any source, without restriction. That way each person would find their own killer app.

I think we all know the iWatch, if it ever exists, won't do that.

Small display + Siri is the key (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887641)

The problem with a tiny-display device is that the interface can only have very few or very small buttons. But with Siri -- especially as Siri improves -- you don't need any buttons at all. So this may just be a wearable iPhone with a small, but thoroughly usable screen. I wouldn't want one, but I can see the market.

A battery that doesn't suck. (5, Insightful)

dclozier (1002772) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887643)

Maybe I could live with charging it weekly but on a daily basis? forget it.

Re:A battery that doesn't suck. (1)

wildbronco (2530954) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887757)

How about inductive charging? Just set it on your inductive charging mat at night?

Re:A battery that doesn't suck. (2)

Xphile101361 (1017774) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887819)

Thinking too small. My body generates heat, the watch is attached to my body. Heat can be turned into energy. I want this to suck the heat from my body (much like my soul) and charge itself.

Re:A battery that doesn't suck. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887917)

Yeah, but if Apple can't lock you in to needing a custom cable that they can sell you for an additional $45 then how are they going to keep their profits sky high?

Options... (1)

DarthVain (724186) | about a year and a half ago | (#42888035)

Meh. Just have it run on blood. It could have the needles that would pierce your skin each time you put it on, and little micro pumps to suck up the blood.

Heck with all the Vampire mania going on with tweens these days it should be an instant hit. Put that sparkly faced vamphunk on it and the market will swoon.

You could of course just surgically implant it into your wrist, though upgrades might be expensive.

But for the really chronos fan, have a chip implanted directly into your brain, that using your neural connections not only powers itself using the electrical impulses of your brain, but also sends the time information directly into the neural cluster that is responsible for keeping track of time, making you never forget what time it current is and when you turned into a cyborg. I've heard with the recent advances that the death rate is down to only 10%

Or you could use a series of mechinical gears and switches attached to a spring, and strap it to your wrist.

There is a nuclear powered quartz watch that will last for 10,000 years, however it also weighs 1000kg, produces a lot of scalding steam, consumes a lot of water, and causes cancer of the wrist.

Or Apple could realize that no one wears a watch anymore because they all use their Phone to tell time. Unless they want to put out their Phone buisness so that no one uses a Phone to call anyone, they just use their watch. That just seems overly complicated and unproductive however.

Re:A battery that doesn't suck. (1)

chemicaldave (1776600) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887767)

Do you wear your watch to bed or something?

Re:A battery that doesn't suck. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887827)

Yes.

Re:A battery that doesn't suck. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887905)

I haven't taken my watch off in about 6 years with the exception of airport security checkpoints.

Re:A battery that doesn't suck. (1)

Kjella (173770) | about a year and a half ago | (#42888057)

I haven't taken my watch off in about 6 years with the exception of airport security checkpoints.

Anywhere else I'd assume it's waterproof so you shower with it, here on slashdot I'm not so sure...

Re:A battery that doesn't suck. (1)

ljw1004 (764174) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887911)

All GPS-tracking watches that I've seen today have a battery life of about one day. So daily charging won't be new for a watch.

If a smartwatch is like a smartphone... (1)

Carcass666 (539381) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887645)

It will stream videos, play music, have Angry Birds and have a great newsreader; but won't excel at it's primary task which, in this case, is keeping decent time.

Re:If a smartwatch is like a smartphone... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42888009)

I have a smartphone to do all of those things... placing/receiving calls is just something extra it can do

Has to last longer than a smartphone (2)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887651)

If I have to charge a watch every day, I'm not going to be using one.

I stopped wearing a watch when I started carrying a cellphone, so I'm not 100% sure I'd use one of these smart watches anyway - but I must admit some of the ideas I occasionally hear floating around this idea do intrigue me. However the existing smart watches don't impress me at all - not really enough bang for the buck.

Who needs a wrist watch? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887657)

Who needs a watch anymore? The only thing I could see them doing to make this work is taking away the time display on my iPhone and not allowing any apps to display the time.

Re:Who needs a wrist watch? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887741)

Somehow, I find that glancing at my wrist rather than having to dig my phone out of my pocket (which isn't allowed in all the areas I work in) is significantly less intrusive. I also don't have to worry about whether or not I charged my watch recently.

Time travel (1)

mark-t (151149) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887661)

Hey.... you have to admit, having a watch that allowed you to travel through time would be pretty kick-ass.

Re:Time travel (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887729)

I already travel through time. A way to stop, or at least pause for a bit, would be more impressive.

Re:Time travel (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887753)

I'd rather have a phone booth.

Ant+ (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887667)

Workout data. For bikes, heartrate, power, cadence plus some Strava features.

Lasers and targeting (1)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887687)

Obviously it needs a high power laser and a targeting circle, which uses Apple Maps and the AppleID of the target to precisely hit the wrong building.

That or a scrolling stock ticker with a built in Angry Birds game that is voice controlled.

eInk (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887689)

I think an e-Ink screen is an absolute must. You'll be looking at your watch often in broad sunlight, and with e-Ink, the screen could be on all the time and not take much power when it's idling.

time, stopwatch, countdown timer, alarm, indiglo (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887693)

Watch must be water reistant to 100m (I don't dive, but the ones rated for less have been known to die in the sink or shower).
Stopwatch must display 1/100ths of a second.
Countdown timer must have repeat function.

/thread

NTP (4, Insightful)

RandomFactor (22447) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887713)

I mean really, it is a time piece after all...

Clearly (1)

lesincompetent (2836253) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887717)

A metal melting laser.

Android... (1)

tuppe666 (904118) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887723)

..with live results of Apples shares prices dropping.

I'm too busy right now... (1)

tippe (1136385) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887725)

but if I had the time I'd probably rip off the features listed on the spec sheet for the Pebble Watch and pass them off as being my own ideas. Come to think of it, that's probably exactly what Apple is going to do. Hope those Pebble guys have deep pockets and a solid patent portfolio...

Spoilers: 5 ... 4 ... 3 ... 2 ... 1... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887727)

http://www.tomshardware.com/news/apple-patent-motion-charger-induction,17760.html

Killer app? (1)

frank_adrian314159 (469671) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887751)

Somehow, I don't see why something that has the purpose of telling me the time would be killing anything. But I guess you could always put a tiny assault rifle in one. Or a laser beam (shark optional).

A car? (1)

StripedCow (776465) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887759)

A black 1982 Pontiac Trans Am.

Features that appear "Obvious" (1)

Spectre (1685) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887769)

Speaking as somebody who uses a lot of iDevices (work and home) including an iPod nano (6th generation) as a watch currently. Battery life is on the order of days of use as a media player, weeks to months if used just as a watch. Adding a few features like Bluetooth would be a further drain on the battery, but I'd hope a few years worth of refinements on an old design would mean that battery life would still be similar after enhancements.
An overly obvious way to make an iWatch would be to take that same iPod nano form factor and:

  • Re-do the case: remove the clip from the back so it is more compact, add mounting points for a watch band
  • Add Bluetooth communication so it can be paired with a smartphone (in the Apple world, almost certainly an iPhone)
  • Add a communication channel over the Bluetooth connection so notifications can be passed from the phone to the watch
  • Add settings on the watch to filter notifications that appear, "Badges", "Banners", "Alerts" (possibly also by App)
  • Permit the Bluetooth connection to also handle audio so one set of Bluetooth headphones/mic can handle music (iPod functionality) as well as a phone call

Without any serious investment nor innovation, it's already useful. Meeting Alerts will show up on your watch if you want, same for important e-mail, texts from select people, incoming calls, and that stupid reminder to pick up milk on the way home ...
Since this is obvious stuff and it hasn't been done yet, I'm guessing the designers probably have some "killer features" that are non-obvious.

yaya (1)

AndyKron (937105) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887773)

I'll tell ya what shouldn't be in a smart watch: Apple patents. DICK TRACY INVENTED IT!

Neurophone output? (1)

Okian Warrior (537106) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887785)

A "Neurophone" [wordpress.com] is an ultrasonic transducer that uses bone conduction to present sounds to the inner ear.

How about a neurophone output?

The output could be spoken Siri-style messages, communication from the watch to the wearer would be inaudible to anyone else, there would be no need for a loudspeaker in the watch, or an earphone.

Useful health applications (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887831)

What would be really great is if they could finally give us an integrated blood sugar monitor. No more needles for diabetics and of course "there's an app for that" that would help track blood sugar levels.

Voice interface (1)

greenguy (162630) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887833)

Smartwatch confirms it: keyboards are dying.

My smart phone has a clangy bell ring tone (1)

WinstonWolfIT (1550079) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887835)

So my smart watch will need to come with a ticking tick tone or no deal.

I can see uses for this. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887845)

Quick notifications come to mind.... email, texts, weather alerts. Whatever you'd want pushed to it.
 
But on the high end side of what I could see with this is medical monitoring. Could this be used to meassure heart rate? Insulin levels? O2 levels? It would be great for training and better yet could be used for people in a high risk catagory. Imagine knowing your heart is having issues minutes before they manifest in a really disabling way. That could save lives.
 
I know everyone is going to cry and moan because this has Apple's name on it. Please stop, this isn't just about Apple and your fanboi bias just isn't all that interesting.
 
I think "smart"[whatever] technology is being overlooked in ways that could really benefit the end user. The technologies that are out there have a pretty solid track record and need to be brought into more serious applications. Science fiction writers have had ideas about this kind of thing for decades and longer. We could be working on this today. I'd be willing to beta test something with these kinds of potentials for free.

A garage door opener! (1)

dhalsim2 (626618) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887853)

A garage door opener!

Short list (1)

GodfatherofSoul (174979) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887859)

A functioning watch
Wifi to seamlessly resync with NTP servers
Advanced watch functions like alarm, stop watch and timer
MicroSD card reader
MP3 player
Desktop sync (through blue tooth?)
Maybe a battery cell band for increased power
headphone jack (you'll need a technique to secure the wire for joggers, exercisers, etc)
Simple notification system to receive texts, email, tweets, FB updates, etc., seriously doubt sending capability will work

Lose all the extended functionality like web browsing unless you plan on pimping a new ultra low-end mobile format for displaying web pages.

geiger counter (1)

WillgasM (1646719) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887861)

and a large enough wristband to fit around my meaty paw

They already made one (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887873)

It was called the iPod Nano.

And then they killed it.

It's not standalone (4, Insightful)

Bogtha (906264) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887891)

A smart watch only really makes sense as a convenient interface to a more powerful machine. The features important to it are therefore input and output, along with a connection to your phone. So a display, a microphone, and a button are the obvious ones. A smart watch will probably have fewer features than a non-smart watch.

Multiple devices (3, Interesting)

gmuslera (3436) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887893)

A separate bluetooth headset should take care of the phone interaction. I would put sensors there (at very least, for pulse), as a small screeen for displaying fast information (time, weather, notifications, playlist controls, etc, and a "remote desktop" for your real phone, that could be big enough to not have it always in your hand.

Phones are getting big, maybe splitting the interaction with several separate devices could be the way (and yes, something similar to Google Glass could be in the kitchen too)

Medical uses (4, Interesting)

Okian Warrior (537106) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887929)

How about a self-contained package which holds all of the wearer's medical records? (Yes, sort out the security issues first.)

How about continuous monitoring of heart rate, blood oxygenation, and temperature?

Rather than go to the doctor "with a fever", the doctor could tell if the fever was low-grade, "spiky", how long it has been going on, &c. Perhaps the specific fever character could be used to disambiguate between certain diseases. A patient could tell if the fever was only certain times of the day (allergic to something at work?) or in certain places.

Blood-oxygenation monitoring and heartrate could be used to diagnose sleep apnea, tell how much exercise the person is getting. Motion monitoring could diagnose sleep disorders.

To be cheaper than a Rolex (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887931)

But as an Apple product, the cost will likely make Rolex blush

Nice try... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887935)

Nice try Apple R&D ;)

Obviously a RAD counter (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42887939)

It should keep track of every item on my person, a RAD counter, tell me the condition of all my limbs, what skills I have, maps, and it should double as a flash light.

Nobody ever read comic books? (1)

Virtucon (127420) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887943)

Dick Tracy had it all. [wikipedia.org]

Frankly, all I want from a watch is: the time.

Been done before (1)

phorm (591458) | about a year and a half ago | (#42887965)

Well, to start with this isn't a new concept. The pebble [kickstarter.com] project has been around for awhile, though it's more of a smartphone interface in some ways.

That said:
* An "idle" time of at least 1mo.
* Waterproof, inductive charging
* Bluetooth/wifi
* Ability to sync calendar events/email etc from the cloud (internet and OTA from other devices)
* If cellular-compatible, the ability to act as a hotspot
* Ability to act as a bluetooth speaker/mic for other smart-devices
* Infrared (would make a dandy universal remote)

Personally (0)

Murdoch5 (1563847) | about a year and a half ago | (#42888033)

Stop making high tech watches. They look, act and just appear ridiculous, you look like a complete fool wearing one and you simply have no need what so ever for computing ability in your watch. The fact that company's like Rolex or Citizen aren't releasing "smart" or "iWatches" means there is no market for it. Out of the biggest and most powerful watch making company's you wont see this catch on, people want a professional, sexy looking watch that does what it is meant to, tell time. I don't want anything else in there that can screw that up, my current watch will keep time insanely well that is what I bought it for. The day when I go to Apple or any other computer company for a watch is the day I also apply for my mental status to be declared retarded. Leave the watch alone, it works, it looks good and it doesn't need to change. Leave the watch making to company's like Citizen or Rolex or the other 50 that do it well, I don't need a friggen Apple logo on the bottom of a white watch that simple looks horrible.

Small is smart (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42888079)

number one feature for me is that it's NOT a huge chunky monstrousity.

(number one failing of most smart watches is they try to include everything and end up huge)

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