The smart watch revolution is coming. All of the big tech giants are lining up, including Apple and Microsoft. The Pebble smart watch beat them all to it, and it has sold strongly albeit perhaps with false market scarcity. The remainder of 2013 will feature some huge releases in some of the biggest tech sectors – the PS4 V Xbox One in the games console space, the iPhone 6 Vs the android competitors (led by Samsung and their new Galaxy’s) in the smart phone space and of course, the introduction of the smart watch as the new must have the gadget. But, should I buy a smartwatch like an Apple iWatch?
Let me lend some perspective. I have a Pebble smart watch. It’s a nifty little gadget, looks quite cool and functions well. It brings a big chunk of the features that we can expect from the Apple and Microsoft watches later this year. I will not be buying one of those new smart watches, and the reason isn’t because i already own the Pebble. Let me elaborate further.
I got woken by my Pebble watch a few days ago. It was Saturday night / morning and the time was 5.17am. Besides the odd really big night out, that’s not a time that i generally like to see on a Sunday morning. At that very moment in time, the Pebble was lucky that it didn’t join a few of its namesakes in the garden, having taken the quick route out of the window.
I bought it so that I could constantly be kept up to date with all of the latest happenings. From phone calls that I may have missed, to important emails and social media notifications. From that point of view its been really good – at least at first. research shows that you get a hit of dopamine, the feel good hormone, when you receive a notification or update from somebody or some app that you wanted to receive. Therefore, your smart watch, being on your wrist and so accessible, become the source of these dopamine hits. It’s these very hits that are leading to internet and general technology addiction from many, as this is the same hormone which is released when we have sex or if we consume drugs.
The problem is, these ever-present notifications become too much with the smart watch. Going back to my sleep example, where i was rudely awakened to receive a notification about a re-tweet on Twitter. Some things are best left for the morning, and too often in a world with tablets, notebooks, smart phones and smart watches, it is impossible to get away.
It is for that very reason that I would push caution when it comes to embracing this new tech. I fear that this technology overburden will lead to burn out. This gadget will just become another email pest, dragging you into work 24 hours a day, all year-long. For me, I would save the money and get a nice wrist watch. Save the tech for your smart phone.