I love it when Apple unwittingly, but always purposefully, hands us our future — for a steep admission price. Watching our new watch-centric Futureworld unwind yesterday — in the din from a bright new set of iPhone 6 twins — was a surreal and foreboding experience. Apple takes us by the hand and we lovingly follow, and play along, all while paying up — and we believe we’re all better for it in the effervescent end; but are we?
Here is my Tweet from this morning on the topic of our new Apple arms:
Isn’t it wild that, for the better part of 30 years I wore a watch — and I readily, and eagerly gave up that beloved status symbol in favor of the first generation iPhone? Who needs a wristwatch AND an iPhone! “Not I,” said I, and the race for the naked arm was on.
Now, a few years later, Apple is reducing us again.
Apple successfully moved me from a wristwatch to an iPhone.
Then, I was carrying an iPhone plus an iPad. Two devices? No problem! One’s for talking, the other’s for surfing.
Then the iPad mini came out and closed the gap between a small screen device and a massive iPad.
Now, with the rise of the iPhone 6 Plus “phablet” — PHone + tABLET = PhAblet — we are now faced with the burden of still carrying two devices. Not an iPhone and an iPad, but rather an iPhone and an iWatch!
Yes, we’re getting smaller in size in our daily carry duties. If you have an iPhone 6 Plus, do you really want to even also carry an iPad Mini? Methinks not!
Apple can’t quite yet take us back down to re-awakening our naked wrists with iWatches only. That will take a few more product generations over a few years. The world is getting smaller as we get only larger, and that’s the key to understanding what’s really happening around us in our bones.
Right now, the iWatch is dependent on the iPhone for purpose and function, but I believe the day is coming when the iWatch will become our iEverything — and the key to making that permanent transition will be the addition of a proper camera and voice recognition: Siri multiplied by a factor of 2,000 — and then our entire iWorld goes back to our wrist in the generation of a single human lifetime.
That’s the special talent of Apple: Knowing what we want before we know we want it — and there’s a certain, frightening, responsibility that comes with that massive power: Simplicity of design coupled with morose, but invisible, mechanics.
Our bodies will become our iWatches and our iWatches will watch our bodies. Soon, there will be no need for winding up or powering down and, sooner than you think, if your iWatch detects you’re having a heart attack, or if you stop breathing in your sleep — a phone call to 911 will silently be placed on your behalf as the First Responders arrive, not at your doorstep, but rather on your wrist as they pull your vitals from afar and directly shake you awake and instantly shock your heart back into rhythm.
Just beware of the lurking loan shark and the projecting parole officer and the looming predator drone above you. One will electrocute you for non-payment while the other two will spy on your every move, always looking for a weakness to exploit or a willfulness to punish for not getting in line quickly enough.
Sure, your life is your own, but it will no longer belong to you because you will have sold the most precious piece of you — your soul — to your Apple overlords, all in the name of science and advancement and convenience, and the government around you will wind you up to tie you down because information is never free and the price you pay is the price you paid to adorn your naked arm with the most innocuous tracking and control device ever invented: Your iWatch.