When the iPhone was released, the smartphone environment kicked into gear. When Apple released the iPad, tablets began to be produced in earnest. An entire industry is built around accessories made specifically for Apple products. Companies are built creating products that work on Apple products alone. Apple is one of the most successful companies in history – not just because they create products that sell well, but because those products can move the industry. Case in point at the time this article is set to be published: the Apple Watch.
In the wake of rumors of an “iWatch” that began many moons ago, the wearables industry began to swarm. There wasn’t a “wearables industry” or a “wearables market” just a few years ago, but here we are – Android Wear, tens of fitness wearable lines, and the occasional outlying “smart shoe.”
Have a peek at our Apple Watch (March) hands-on now.
It’s not just the devoted customer base spoken about by analyst Ben Thompson at Stratechery, it’s the push that’ll be given to the Apple Watch by all those that stand to profit from it.
Apple gives developers and consumers a single rallying point, a place where we can all agree that we’ve got something to say. Be it bad or good – whether we’re going to buy an Apple Watch or trash talk it – there’s one undeniable fact: Apple has the clout.
Apple has the leverage to create a hero device. Other smartwatches, in this case, might be better or worse with one feature or another, but it doesn’t matter.
The Apple Watch isn’t being released at a time when Apple can claim they’re the first to create a “wearable” smart miniature computer. It’s being released at a time when the ecosystem surrounding the burgeoning wearables industry is primed to expand at a very fast rate.
Every manufacturer and software developer will benefit from the release of the Apple Watch once it’s out on the market.
Be it directly – with wearable apps, or indirectly – with a renewed interest in wearing tiny computers on our wrists, everyone will stand to gain users, sales, or one of the many 2nd-hand bumps in-between.
That’s Apple leverage, and at this time in history, no other technology company has such power.