Apple Watch Annual updates (or not) [MERGED]

Discussion in 'Apple Watch' started by saintforlife, Sep 14, 2014.

  1. saintforlife, Sep 14, 2014
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2014

    saintforlife macrumors 65816

    Feb 25, 2011
    For some reason I don't think the Apple Watch will be updated every year. I also can't see people upgrading their watches every year, or two years for that matter. In terms of frequency of how often people upgrade their Apple Watches, I think it will be closer to the iPad, than the iPhone.

  2. ChristianVirtual macrumors 601


    May 10, 2010
    I think annual at least, maybe even 9 month for the simple reason: the battery is so poor as soon some evolution is around in that area :apple: will put it in and make sure we know about it by updating the model and ask us to buy again. And yes, we will.
  3. gadgetguy11 macrumors newbie

    Nov 14, 2010
    Agreed. The luxurious Edition, especially, should see minimal external design change, though the internals may see radical upgrades as technology evolves.
  4. Tanegashima macrumors 6502

    Jun 23, 2009
    I think they will update much more frequently than annual, they need to come up with many different designs, and shouldn't be replacing models, but doing what watches brands do: creating about 5 lines, and updating the models time to time, but let the "crown jewel" stay intact, this is the submariner for Rolex, the speed master professional for omega, the navitimer for breitling, etc...
  5. fhall1 macrumors 68040


    Dec 18, 2007
    (Central) NY State of mind
    I think they will update annually.....and unfortunately they'll make it thinner instead of giving it better battery life. Charging once a day is not acceptable for a watch.
  6. serkan macrumors 6502


    May 14, 2012
    Menlo Park,California
    Can anyone please tell me how we can afford upgrading a phone , a watch , an iPad every year. I want to be using the latest tech every day but this would kill me if this watch also been updated every year.
  7. Kiju macrumors member

    Jul 18, 2010
    Since wearables are such a new and competitive market, I think the only way for their products to remain relevant/cutting edge would be to keep a fairly consistent update cycle.
  8. Julien macrumors G4


    Jun 30, 2007
    What is even worse is we may get a 2ed gen (or 3ed gen) update in Oct to put it on the Xmas buying season.
  9. TheDeviceUser macrumors 6502a

    Jul 20, 2014
    I think this will be a 'Spring update' product, much like the iPad used to be. Therefore I think we'll see the Second Gen announced in Feburary/March 2016.
  10. epicnemesis macrumors member

    Oct 30, 2008
    I have an automatically winding Breitling, and sometimes it will die on me overnight and I have to set the time again in the morning. Its a pain in the ass and my solution was to buy an automatic winder that I would put it in nightly. The magsafe is a much more convenient way of charging a battery. believe me.

    I agree its not ideal, but its not exactly a dealbreaker, especially since you have already gotten used to a nightly routine of charging stuff overnight. *plugs phone in, takes off watch, plugs watch in*

    Its called fiscal responsibility. (Also craigslist)
  11. Michael CM1 macrumors 603

    Feb 4, 2008
    I'm expecting more of a computer-like cycle where the watch gets updated when necessary. I get annual iPhone updates because there's so much you can update each year and people usually buy new ones about every two years. But iPad really hasn't needed annual updates, and I'd rather see them put out when ready instead of to hit a calendar date. Had the iPad Air update come out in the spring instead of last fall, it might've gotten Touch ID. You add Touch ID to my iPad Air and it doesn't really lack much outside of the usual SOC and wireless updates. The software improvements with things like Handoff are more important to me than going from A7 to A8 or getting 802.11 ac.
  12. rossy100 macrumors 6502

    Mar 23, 2011
    Apple Watch Annual updates (or not)

    There is a lot of speculation and discussion about what Apple's strategy will be around updating the Apple Watch.

    Will it be the same annual upgrade cycle like the iPad and iPhone, will it be an incremental internal update path like with Macs, or there be no clear update path like Apple TV.....

    I have given this quite a bit of thought...... and actually I think the answer is staring us all in the face....... they will follow the typical update path of a Watch manufacturer!

    So what does this mean?

    • There will be no major annual updates where one model is replaced by another
    • Additional versions of watched (new materials, some additional features (e.g. sensors, new straps etc.) will be added incrementally over time with previous models remaining in the range for a while until they are eventually discontinued from sale (maybe after 3-4 years) without a fanfare
    • At the same time there may be improvements made to the internals and design (e.g. thinner) - but this will simply expand the range rather than replacing. this is the exact same thing that major watch brands do.

    What are the benefits of this?

    • Given the AW is not tied to a phone contract, it will help to spread sales across the year with no pre-update reduction in sales
    • It will help to establish the AW as a watch as opposed to a piece of technology with a limited shelf life
    • It will create a greater sense of style and choice - which Apple has been keen to emphasise
    • It will provide over time a more broad pricing model - an AW for everyone!
    • It will enable Apple to truly target the Watch market as opposed to the technology market

    Just my thoughts - but interestingly the articles today on planned new casings for Q42015/Q1 2016 would also support this approach!
  13. Michael CM1 macrumors 603

    Feb 4, 2008
    I don't expect it to be quite the same. If you're getting people to pay $10,000 for one of these, you most likely aren't going to make something that is continually updated regularly. I expect maybe a second version with more sensors, better battery life, maybe a camera on the face or a fingerprint sensor built into the screen and standalone cellular in the next couple of years.

    But this doesn't sound like a device that will churn as much as a phone. People are acting like the iPad is failing. Really it's just hitting market maturity. If you make something that works fine for five years instead of two, it's hard to sell them at such insane numbers.

    I plan on getting a first generation one at some point once others guinea pig it for me and write about long term experience. Also, waiting for it to get discounted on a sale. But I wouldn't plan on upgrading it every year. If I were still using my FitBit -- it was a rash thing -- it would be nearly two years old. The flex model is still completely fine despite the newer models, and there's not a compelling reason to upgrade those.
  14. Mascots macrumors 68000


    Sep 5, 2009
    Im leaning towards annual with you.

    The won't not update the  Watch to make people who purchased the first model feel better about themselves.

    However, they will need to continue to update it as technology is constantly changing and they want this watch to the very best it can be (while keeping pace and a leg up on competition).
  15. VirtualRain macrumors 603


    Aug 1, 2008
    Vancouver, BC
    They will update the watch regularly... at least annually. There's already talk of an update again before Christmas with different cases.

    The processor, screen, and battery technology is changing so quickly that the watch will need to be updated regularly simply to keep it performing on par with what people expect based on interactions with their other mobile devices.

    Today's Apple Watch is going to perform like a dog and look like rubbish compared to the one a couple of years from now.

    I think anyone who buys an Apple Watch expecting it not to be obsolete in a couple of years is fooling themselves. It makes the ridiculous pricing even that much more ridiculous, but it's a brilliant move on Apples part. It's the iPhone, iPad, and iPod incremental update recipe all over again.
  16. 8CoreWhore macrumors 68020


    Jan 17, 2008
    Big D
    We should not think of the Watch regarding hardware upgrades the way we have been accustomed to with the iPhone/iPad.

    The Watch is a mature product, unlike the other two in their first few years.

    The iPhone always felt like it needed a faster CPU, and more RAM. And each year or two it got boosts. The Watch already has the CPU and RAM it needs to do what it does.

    Remember, software improvements will come, and are free. If you look at the vision of the iPhone, it took years to achieve the full features. I think the vision of the Watch is completely, or mostly completely in place now.

    The iPhone went through several Bluetooth, and WiFi, and cell radio advances. The Watch has the latest, and to serve the role relegated to an iPhone accessory, all that it needs regarding WiFi and Bluetooth. Those radios need to use low energy, and be fast enough to work with voice calls, and they do that now. Apple couldn't implement Hand Off for years because not enough iPhones and Macs had the Bluetooth 4.0 in it, the Watch does. It satisfies it's role, it's vision, now.

    The iPhone went through several cell revisions as the technology progressed - EDGE, 3G, 4G, LTE. The Watch doesn't have to.

    The iPhone progressed to Retina display, the Watch has it now.

    The need for hardware improvements will just not seem as pressing as it did with the iPhone. It could very well be that you can use the Watch for many years happily without thinking, gee I wish it had a faster CPU. Gee, I wish it had LTE, etc.

    They'll be changes and improvements, but it they won't be as dramatic, and they won't be as frequent, and they won't be on the same timeline we have come to expect from the iPhone.

    The Watch is not envisioned to replace the iPhone. Would you really want a 1.5 inch iPhone? The iPhones just got bigger, not smaller. The Watch is a planet, to the iPhone's sun.

    The batteries will improve, and the software managing it - and those are replaceable.
  17. rossy100 macrumors 6502

    Mar 23, 2011
    I absolutely agree that they will continue to update the watch......... what I am saying though is that this will be done more subtly - growing the range as opposed to replacing incumbent models. Those updates could be done annually, or maybe even more frequently than that....... I just don't think we will see a big bang annual update.
  18. VirtualRain macrumors 603


    Aug 1, 2008
    Vancouver, BC
    The watch is a mature product, but this is not. It's the first of a new generation of smart watch that will only get a lot smarter over time.

    There is talk of all kinds of medical sensors being added over time... this is just like every other Apple product in that it will get incremental hardware updates including a slightly new case design every two years along with new software just like the iPhone.

    Why not?
  19. kmj2318 macrumors 68000


    Aug 22, 2007
    Naples, FL
    I agree with you. I think there will be upgrades in functionality, but it will look nearly identical.
  20. dacreativeguy macrumors 68020

    Jan 27, 2007
    I'll let you know if they do annual updates next April, 2016.
  21. JFazYankees macrumors 6502


    Feb 12, 2012
    I disagree. The Apple Watch is much more a device than a watch, therefore I'm expecting yearly updates.
  22. VirtualRain macrumors 603


    Aug 1, 2008
    Vancouver, BC
    Yeah, the Apple Watch is about as much a watch as the iPhone is a phone. (Both are mobile devices where the namesake function is an app).
  23. hemolyzer macrumors member

    Mar 10, 2015
    Apple will probably update the Watch every year but nobody is forcing you to buy a new one ever year or two or you'll fall behind. It's not like your iPhone.

    They update the Mac every year but you don't see people complaining about Apple "forcing" them to buy a new $2500 computer every year.
  24. JFazYankees macrumors 6502


    Feb 12, 2012
    Exactly my thinking :)
  25. bob24 macrumors 6502

    Sep 25, 2012
    Dublin, Ireland
    Well that is the question really. People don't update their Mac as often as their phone because on the Mac it takes many more generations to see significant changes that make them want to upgrade.

    I think the question is not weather Apple will refresh the Apple Watch every year (they probably will), but how significant the changes will be. If it is a new colour/shape for the casing and the exact same internals (what they have been doing with iPods in the past few years), not many people will want to upgrade. If it is doubling the battery life, making the device thiner, and/or introduction a few features which are only available on the latest generation (as they do with the iPhone) - then it will be a different story.

    Given that it is a very new product category, I would tend to think the changes will be fairly significant.

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