Will the Apple Watch Live Up to the Hype?
Is the Apple Watch the Ultimate Home Automation Controller?
On March 9th Apple unveiled their newest endeavor, a new chapter in their longstanding history of convenient, user-friendly technology products. With the growing trend in technologically enhanced wearables, the Apple Watch is the latest member of Apple’s roster.
Slated to be released on April 24th with a pre-order date scheduled for April 10th, the Apple Watch will initially be available in the United States, European countries like France, Germany, and the United Kingdom, and Asian countries like Japan, China, and Hong Kong. The base price is $349.00 but some watches can fetch $17,000 with 18-karat gold infused into the watch’s external composition and varying options in the watchbands.
In terms of size, the body of the watch is sized at either 38mm or 42mm, depending on the user’s preference. The 38mm watch body costs $349 and the 42mm watch body costs $399.00.
Like many other Apple products, there are three different categories of the Apple Watch: Apple Watch Sport, Apple Watch, and Apple Watch Edition. The Apple Watch Sport is fitted with a plastic band, Apple’s long-featured lon X strengthened glass, an aluminum alloy body, and a composite back. The second category, the Apple Watch, has two different color options and is composed of stainless steel and sapphire crystal. The 38mm Apple Watch costs $549 and the 42mm Apple Watch costs $599. The Apple Watch Edition is the previously mentioned 18-karat gold watch, with prices starting at $10,000 and ranging up to $17,000.
There are also a variety of different bands that can be purchased from the Apple Store separately. The watchbands come in many different material compositions and stylistic designs. Costs of these bands range from $60 up to multiple hundreds of dollars.
Now, on to the actual function of the Apple Watch, which is Apple’s first new product release since the iPad. The Apple Watch is a smartwatch, meaning that it is a watch that is designed to interact with other pieces of technology, such as iPhones, and has the ability to run its own applications. Sorry Android users, the watch only works with the iPhone 5, 5S, 5C, 6, or 6+. Apple took a unique path with the Apple Watch that they have not previously taken, especially when it was most likely needed the most with the iPhone. For the Apple Watch, the company released a software kit that has helped application developers understand design strategy for Apple Watch applications, promoting the introduction of third party applications.
The rest of the Apple Watch features are in line with many of Apple’s other products and is designed to connect with the user’s phone. If the user does not want to reach into their pocket for their phone, they can make and answer calls using the watch’s speaker system. The user can also manage emails and text messages, play music, and use Apple’s new Health platform to monitor physiological and fitness measurements. Apple Pay has been incorporated into the watch’s design as well, making it the first wearable to have mobile payment capabilities.
With some companies already developing applications that enable the Apple Watch to interact with Home Automation devices such as lighting and some alarm systems it is only a matter of time before the Apple Watch becomes the most versatile wearable on the market. We hope that the leading manufacturers of Home Automation Systems such as Savant, Crestron, Control4, and Vantage push full-throttle ahead with Apple’s WatchKit to make their respective compatible apps. With the ability to unlock your Kwikset lock, deploy family member specific lighting scenes, control your tidal playlist, and maybe even turn on the coffee machine, the possibilities are truly limitless. Your Long Island home will never be the same!
Bluetooth and Wi-fi connection are both available, so connection to the user’s phone and Wi-fi network is possible. Additionally, the watch can connect to the Wi-fi hotspot provided by the user’s iPhone. Like many of Apple’s products, there is a long trial and error phase that accompanies something this innovative. Many are skeptical regarding the interaction of the applications with the software interface, the battery life potential, or the overall continuity of switching between the watch’s many uses. After April 24th, media outlets will be flooded with reviews, both praising and criticizing the watch for a multitude of reasons and comparing it to its predecessors. Let’s hope, for Apple’s sake and for ours, that the watch meets or ideally surpasses its expectations.
About the Author
After a brief hiatus in Washington, DC to attend undergraduate (Go GDub!) and graduate school (Hoya Saxa!), Justin has come on-board full-time to head business development and help drive Audio Den into the future. His focus on organizational management, business processes, and web presence make sure Audio Den is running efficiently, effectively, and always honed in on the client experience. Justin brings a pragmatic and results-driven strategic vision to the team. As an unrelenting “digital native,” Justin also works in the field liaising with our installation and sales team in integrating emerging technologies. As James’s son, it was no coincidence that Justin’s first word was “peaker” (“speakers”). Justin is an avid sailor, diver, and is slowly but surely working on his private pilot’s license. Justin is a certified Control4 Installer and Audio Den's designated OSHA Safety Officer.