Smartwatches aren't new to college campuses, but the expected growth in the market once the Apple Watch ships this April has some schools banning the devices over concerns that students may use them to cheat on exams. Schools fear the surge in popularity smartwatches will gain thanks to Apple Watch poses a serious threat to keeping students honest.
Schools banning Apple Watch to stop cheating on tests
The big problem schools are facing is that smartwatches can work as an extension of our smartphones—devices that have already been banned from many exam halls. While some smartwatches are very obviously not traditional watches, Apple Watch blurs that line with its design that's more fashion than tech.
Without an easy way to tell if students are getting messages with test answers or looking up information during tests, schools are going for an across the board exam room ban on the devices, according to BuzzFeed. Just like smartphones, they aren't, however, banning smartwatches from classrooms.
Apple's first entry into the smartwatch market will come this April when it ships Apple Watch, Apple Watch Sport, and Apple Watch Edition. Apple Watch Sport pricing will start at US$350, and Apple Watch Edition may top $5,000.
Unlike many other smartwatch devices, Apple's looks more like jewelry than tech. It's also expected to be very popular, which hasn't been as much of a thing for other smartwatches already on the market.
For students hoping to game the system once they have an Apple Watch, the new bans will come as a disappointment. Some students will always find ways to cheat, but now they won't be able to use Apple Watch—or any other smartwatch—to do that.