Posts Tagged ‘technology’

Apple Watch: PR Blunder or PR Perfection?

May 14, 2015

Two words can instantly spark a heated debate: Apple Watch. The device has created two schools of thought- it sucks, or it’s genius. Try to find someone on the fence and you’ll be sorely disappointed. For Apple “fanboys” like me, there’s no doubt it’s a cool device – well-designed, fills a niche no other technology I have does, and above and beyond any other wearable on the market. To everyone else it’s “Why do I need it?” “Why would I spend $800 to not look at my phone as much as I do now?” or “They’re just dumb.” Debate aside, one thing seems to escape everyone talking about it. If you’re debating the watch, Apple’s unmatched PR machine is working.

Does anyone need a smartwatch?
Apple Watch is a hard sell. It has incredible capabilities but do mainstream consumers think they need them? Probably not, but they may want them eventually and Apple has the clout to make that happen. Before Apple Watch, smartwatches were clunky, fairly ugly and nearly all were marketed to the same audience as Casio’s calculator watches from the 80s. They had no mainstream appeal and even less functionality.

On the other hand, Apple has an ecosystem of more than 3,500 apps for Apple Watch alone and 1.2 million on iOS. Developers will innovate new apps specifically for Apple Watch, leading to more coverage of the watch, more interest and more debate as the device’s appeal continues to grow.

Apple is making smartwatches cool.
Apple’s already won the battle in making a smartwatch cooler than they’ve ever been. But is that enough for a device with a price tag ranging from $349 to more than $14,000? Apple’s betting on fashion-aware celebrities and consumers to adopt the watch. And shortly before launch it was already around the wrists of Beyonce, Pharell, Drake, Sam Smith, Katy Perry and Chanel creative director Karl Lagerfeld. Meanwhile the Apple PR team made no small effort to make sure the watch was reviewed by fashion magazines from GQ to Vogue and the most influential watch experts in the world, making the device known as more than just a “mini-computer.”

In order for Apple Watch to be successful it needs to be seen as cool, fashionable, desired, capable and most importantly worth your money. For an item nobody truly needs, Apple’s already proven that they’re able to make people want it. In the end, that’s all that matters. The reviews have been positive (with a caveat here or there), the thousands of articles keep on coming, the debate wages on, yet the bottom line remains – Apple has already sold 3.2 million watches in just over a month.

The Apple Watch is already set to outpace the iPhone in first-year sales. It looks like their PR team is succeeding where others have failed, again.

 

Let’s Get Personal

October 25, 2012

When it comes to my friends and I – who are scattered around the east coast – we never utter the words “keep in touch.” In this day in age, the amount of channels and outlets that are available to us provide opportunities to keep the lines of communication open. But it was not always easy to stay up to date on the lives of others around you. The way we communicate and keep in touch with others, whether it’s with friends, family, or business has evolved over time. Factors like advancements in technologies, our age, and where we live, all play a role in how we communicate in present day.

I’ve seen the evolution of communication through various outlets and tools. In elementary school, I used to write letters to a pen-pal who lived in London.  In my middle and high school days I would use AOL and AIM for emailing and instant messaging. When cell phones became a household must-have item I would constantly go over my allotted minutes, and when text messaging rolled out, it was the go-to communication tool for wanting quick responses.

Technology has definitely opened the doors of communication for people who cannot always be physically present. In the business setting, Skype has been used to include a team member in meetings who is located too far to attend. We schedule conference calls, and send emails throughout the day. With friends and family, the use of Facetime allows for loved ones to be more personal on a call.

However, as great as these advancements in technology have been, I have to ask, are we losing the personal touch that connected us in the first place? Many times, I feel like we are on the fast track into a “digi” world. People have become so addicted to their phones and gadgets that, at times, they don’t engage in conversation with the person sitting next to them. You’ve seen it at restaurants and, on a more serious note, the epidemic that is now texting and driving.

Disconnecting a little from our emails, phone calls, and texts and engaging with one another on a more meaningful and thoughtful level strengthens already existing relationships. Face-to-face interaction is what established our relationships in the first place, so it is important to mix in quality in-person time every so often.

Since distance is an obstacle for my friends and I, we have found ways to always stay connected. We are thankful for the technology that has allowed us to stay connected from afar, but we always know there is nothing better than weekends spent with one another. As new advancements in technology continue to come to market it’s just a matter of time before the next big thing sweeps through and captures everyone’s attention. It’s natural to use these tools as stepping stones, but always remember being present and face-to-face with someone is the most valuable tool we have.


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