Proposing that entrenched sub-cultures should try something new is dangerous. Going into guitar forums with a new idea is a prospect fraught with peril for anyone who dares move beyond the six-strings-and-a-dream mentality of guitar purists.
Could Apple beat this malaise with an iOS-powered iWatch? Maybe, but I doubt it. First, it would require more processing power than, say, an iPod Nano (an iPhone’s processor might be overkill) and a battery that would last months. It would need a readout that can show the time at a glance and a low-power wireless connection to the phone that will stay connected without issue for weeks. It would need to be water and shock proof and look good on the wrist. In short, it has to beat a G-Shock or your Dad’s old Hamilton mechanical.
When looking at a smart watch I would propose something like the Butch Test – can this watch retain its value as a timekeeping instrument and item of value even after spending seven years in a place unconducive to a delicate object? If it can, it’s a watch. If it can’t, it’a fad. iPods of a certain vintage, for example, are still usable, as are some computers. My Palm watch, amazing in its day, is a cold hunk of metal and my SPOT watch rests forlornly on a clipped branch of smart watch evolution. Most watchmakers abide by strict standards of usability, ruggedness, and quality. Few smart watches, on the other hand, are rugged, strong, and useful enough to match the utility of an “uncomfortable hunk of metal” on the wrist.