Apple has apparently failed to create the smartwatch product it first envisaged with the Apple Watch.
When the Apple Watch launches in April, it will doubtless sell a shed-load – but it won’t be the device that Apple originally wanted to make.
That’s the claim made in a new Wall Street Journal report.
Apparently, Apple initially envisaged a state-of-the-art health-monitoring device that could measure a wearer’s blood pressure, heart rate, stress levels, and a number of other health metrics.
The final Apple Watch will have none of these abilities. According to sources, the Apple Watch was incredibly challenging to make, and became known internally as the “black hole” for its capacity to suck resources over its four year development.
A large part of the problem was the health sensor technology Apple was trying to implement. It attempted to add a sensor that measures the conductivity of the skin in a bid to detect stress, as well as to measure heart rate. However, the sensors wouldn’t work consistently with wearers, particularly if they had hairy arms or dry skin.
Other attempts to measure blood pressure or oxygen levels met with similar failure, and there was also the problem of negotiating regulatory approval for the interpreting of such data even if Apple did succeed with its execution.
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As such, the Apple Watch that we’ll see in April is a much less advanced proposition. It still has health sensors, but only a simple pulse monitor and a pedometer.
Rather, the main purpose of the Apple Watch will be as an iPhone notification aid and as a fashion accessory. Without a killer app, as such, it will be interesting to see if the great white hope of wearables has real legs beyond the usual Apple fanbase.