Apple’s big announcement wasn’t iPhone X, it was about a future without iPhones

“Apple’s ‘one more thing’ yesterday was the long-awaited, all-new iPhone X: a stunning piece of technology with fantastic performance, precision design, and — at last — a breathtaking OLED display,” Mark Rogowsky writes for Forbes. “But while everyone walked away agog about what Tim Cook called ‘the biggest leap forward since the original iPhone,’ it wasn’t truly the most important announcement Apple made yesterday.”

“Yes, it will sell by the tens of millions, hundreds even, and it will provide the bulk of Apple’s profits for years to come. But despite all the marvels inside iPhone X, it’s ultimately still a slab of glass and metal you hold in your hand,” Rogowsky writes. “Apple is already looking to the day when that’s no longer the way people interact with their devices.”

“The future will be worn and not held,” Rogowsky writes. “And that makes the new Apple Watch with built-in cellular functionality the real product to, ahem, watch in the months and years ahead. The waves it makes in 2018 might seem like mere ripples, but Apple is poised to lead a tsunami of change in communication as we enter the next decade.”

The freedom to go with just your Apple Watch.
The freedom to go with just your Apple Watch.

“Around 30M have been sold to date and it’s likely that around 1 in 20 iPhone users already have one,” Rogowsky writes. “Surprisingly, it supports not just 4G LTE, but also UMTS, the 3G variant that supplanted GSM — once the world’s most popular mobile phone standard. That gives the Watch access to scores of cellular networks around the world… With an Apple Watch on and AirPods in ear your freedom to move about is greater than before and yet the weight being carried has not been lower in the smartphone era… With an Apple Watch on and AirPods in ear your freedom to move about is greater than before and yet the weight being carried has not been lower in the smartphone era.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: As we wrote back in July:

If you don’t have an Apple Watch, yet, you are missing out. If, beyond an iPhone, you also have a Mac, an iPad, AirPods, etc. and still don’t have an Apple Watch, you are really missing out.

That said, as we wrote over a year ago:

The people most obsessed with an Apple Watch that’s fully independent of iPhone do not own an Apple Watch.

Apple Watch will get the ability to connect to cellular networks eventually – and that’ll be useful for when you’re out on a run with just your GPS-capable Apple Watch and you need to make a quick phone call or text a brief message, but Apple Watch’s display is just too small to be relied upon all by its lonesome most of the time. You’ll want to pull out your iPhone when encountering longer text, viewing photos and videos, etc. — MacDailyNews, August 26, 2016

Apple Watch, the world’s best-selling watch, can now work without an iPhone – September 12, 2017
New Apple Watch Series 3 delivers built-in cellular with powerful new health and fitness enhancements – September 12, 2017


  1. The watch isn’t replacing iPhones anytime soon (or perhaps ever). Just like iPads aren’t going to replace laptops/desktops for some people.

    I’ve owned a few Apple watches and they are just too limited in screen size, speed, battery, functionality, etc. Are they handy and nice? Yes. But I can also easily go without and just use my iPhone.

    1. I think this comment touches on the shift Apple is moving towards. They’re strategy is always for you to have multiple devices. For many, on the go, the mix is a phone and a laptop. The phone in the watch will start to enable the switch to a watch and an iPad for on the go.

  2. We have all come to the realization that the iPhone is not just a phone. Indeed, only about 10% of what we use it for has anything to do with a phone. So to claim the addition of phone capabilities to the Watch somehow eliminates the need for an iPhone is naive.

    And, frankly, if you aren’t into fitness (not the same thing as “health”) then why would you want LTE in your Watch, let alone the monthly connection charge?

    1. The iPad does the non phone stuff better. I would rather spend $1,000 on an LTE iPad than a phone I had to squint to see.

      In a previous part of my life I worked as a professional photographer (film era-Mamiya 645/BR67, Canon F1, Nikon F1 & F2, Olympus OM1), so I carry some very defined ideas regarding what I need in a camera. I have proper cameras for serious photography (Leicas), so the iPhone camera is just a point and shoot. A very nice point and shoot, but just a pocket camera.

      1. DG: I have a photog background as well (art) and the glass is an overriding matter. The new camera hardware/sw in th iPh X, doesn’t take it away from just a pocket cam (even though it resides there)?

  3. What about those of us who don’t wear watches? Or jewellery etc… the Apple Watch will never replace my iPhone as I’d never wear it. I do hope they continue to produce the ‘slab of glass and metal’ forever.

  4. Those of you who have followed my prescient comments for years (both of you, thanks mom and dad) may remember that I once predicted the Apple watch will be the MAIN source of portable computing power and the iPhone will be nothing more than an accessory for those who want a bigger screen and better sounds. But, all the functions will be performed in the watch and the ‘phone’ will be optional.

  5. Oh, I’ll add a 3rd function for the ‘phone’. It will be also be used as a spare battery to give the Apple Watch a quick shot of energy if needed. So, three things – bigger screen, better sound and recharge the Watch.

    Don’t say I didn’t tell you.

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