One of the notable tech trends in the last 20 years has been for people to rely on their smartphones to tell the time rather than wristwatches, with these devices offering an all-in-one package combining phone, timepiece, internet, diary and so much more.
However, Apple has challenged that with its smartwatch, which offers the same kind of facilities as a smartphone, but can be worn like a traditional wristwatch. A great advantage of this device is that it will become an ideal wearable for travellers. Size is the first and most obvious of advantages, being even smaller and lighter than a smartphone, not to mention being visible even when both hands are full carrying luggage through a busy airport terminal.
Time and place
The watch certainly has a range of functions that are highly useful for travellers. One of them is a screen that can simultaneously reveal the times in multiple locations. This means that, for example, someone stopping in Singapore en route between the UK and Australia can instantly establish the local time, UK time and the time at their destination. This can help in many ways, for instance if sending an email and hoping for it to be read by a certain time – such as when the recipient is not in bed asleep. It also enables the traveller to establish how much their body clock is cut of sync with the time and to try to schedule their next rest break before arrival in Australia. Once at a destination, a traveller can then use an electronic maps function to get around, which will be ideal for those who are first-time visitors to a place.
Being far away from friends and family, travellers will no doubt want to keep in touch and let them know how they are getting on. The Apple Watch has a number of new functions for this. These include being able to send messages simply by tapping the watch’s side button. People can send more than standard messages, with the capability to send sketches or even a recorded heartbeat. The sketching function is amazingly clever; it enables the wearer simply to draw an image with their finger, which is then translated into something that matches the shape, like a flower or a heart. Tapping is a wonderful way to send a simple message. The recipient will feel a tap on their own wrist, a nice way to physically connect with someone who could be thousands of miles away.
So for travellers keen to stay in touch and get around, it could be the Apple Watch and much more other travel app is the start of great things to come.