The Apple iWatch Crystal Ball
It hit me the other day that I would love to have a list of everyone who predicted that Apple's so-called iWatch will fail. And then I realized, who better to make such a list than me?
Apple hasn't even announced the iWatch, and yet it was pretty easy to find eight mainstream examples of people who just know that Apple is going to fall on its face with this thing. I know there's more out there, and I would appreciate it you'd let me know when you see them. I'll be updating this list as time marches on.
So far, there's a consistent theme in these predictions, and that's people assuming Apple will fail because everyone else has failed with smartwatches. I've written about in the past, but it bears mentioning again: Apple won't do a smartwatch like previous smartwatches, just like it didn't do MP3 players, online music stores, smartphones, or tablets like those that came before.
One more note: If Apple's iWatch does fail in the market, I'll change this list into a Prediction Hall of Fame pointing out how these folks got it right.
In no particular order:
Author: Jon Markman - Watch Out When Apple Goes For The Wrist
Publication: Forbes on June 24th, 2014
Short Version: Nobody wants to play Plants vs. Zombies on their wrist, smartwatches are stupid, real time pieces are made by Breitling and Tag, and "the smartwatch is a solution in search of a problem." Plus, you know, battery power.
Bryan's Notes: This is the piece that gave me the idea of keeping this record. It's a great example of looking for answers inside the box.
Author: Rocco Pendola - Apple's Smartwatch Will Probably Fail
Publication: TheStreet on June 23rd, 2014
Short Version: Smartwatches are gimmicks and nobody wants one.
Bryan's Notes: Rocco Pendola is a smart cookie and a class act. I wrote a column taking him to task for this particular piece, and he took it in stride (and even tweeted it). We also made a bet: if Apple sells less than 40 million units in the first calendar year of availability, the iWatch will be labeled a failure. If it sells more, the device is a success. The loser writes a guest post explaining how the winner was right. Fun, right?
Author: Trip Chowdry in Comments to CNBC
Soap Box: Global Equities Research on March 20th, 2014
Short Version: If Apple doesn't release the iWatch in 60 days, the company will disappear.
Bryan's Notes: This wasn't just an iWatch Hall of Fail entry, it was an Apple Death Knell Counter entry (#64). His absurd deadline came and went on May 19th, I might add, but Apple appears to have not gotten its death certificate.
Author: Megan Willett - DEAR APPLE: We Don't Want A Smart Watch Because The Classic Wrist Watch Will Never Die
Publication: BusinessInsider on May 10th, 2013
Short Version: "Hey Apple head honchos, we don't care about smart watches, so don't even bother trying." Also, real time pieces are timeless.
Bryan's Notes: This piece reads like a love letter to mechanical watches, something I can personally get behind. I love watches. Real watches, that is. Mechanical marvels. The thing is that can remain true and Apple can also sell a bunch of iWatches.
Author: Rick Aristotle Muniz - 5 Reasons Why Apple's iWatch Will Fail
Publication:The Motley Fool on February 11th, 2013.
Short Version: No one wears watches any more, disrupting is hard, the iWatch might not do enough things, and it will probably be too pricey.
Author: Alexis McCrossen - Why the iWatch Will Likely Fail
Publication: Time on October 22nd, 2013
Short Version: The wrist is so old fashioned.
Author: Kevin Roose - Does Anybody Really Want an iWatch?
Publication: New York Magazine on February 12th, 2013
Short Version: Smartwatches have always failed in the past.
Author: Rob Enderle - What the iWatch Could Be if Apple Still Had Guts
Short Version: The iWatch could be a success if Apple did this thing that HP once did but it won't do it because Apple isn't a risk taker any more.
Bryan's Notes: lolHP
Author: Sam Biddle - How Stupid Are You Willing to Look for Apple's Amazing Magical iWatch?
Publication: Gizmodo on February 13th, 2013
Short Version: Smartwatches are dumb and they look dumb and Apple only follows everyone else and you'll look dumb if you wear this.