When will Apple Watch achieve full independence from the iPhone?

Even with Apple Watch Series 7, an iPhone is required for activation and setup, syncing data, and day-to-day operation. When will Apple Watch be able to operate independently from iPhone?

Apple Watch Series 7 is available in three materials: titanium, stainless steel, and aluminum.
Apple Watch Series 7 is available in three materials: titanium, stainless steel, and aluminum.

Mark Gurman for Bloomberg News:

you still can’t buy an Apple Watch, set it up from the device itself, and move over all of your content from the cloud. That limits the potential user base of the Apple Watch—and excludes people who might want to only own an Apple Watch and a Mac or iPad and no iPhone. Or, one day, people who want an Apple Watch as their only device.

The good news is that the Apple Watch Series 7 brings us closer to that vision with something as simple as a built-in qwerty keyboard and the potential for more expansive controls…

Apple should add a setup system to the watch so that a user can log in directly to their iCloud and iTunes accounts, download data from the cloud, and activate the device with their cellular carrier…

Making the watch completely independent could turn the device into an even bigger part of the company’s product portfolio, increase sales and help reach customers outside of the Apple ecosystem—including Android users.

MacDailyNews Take: In his full article, Gurman lists a number of other features that watchOS / Apple Watch still lack, including “a smartwatch-sized version of the Safari web browser. It would probably be a mediocre experience because of the small display size, but it’s definitely necessary in whatever form it takes.”

Or, like they make iTunes for Windows way back when, Apple could just make a Watch app for Android and dramatically expand Apple Watch’s addressable market.

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6 Comments

  1. This seems to be another case of wishful thinking, tech media has got nothing else to do but fantasize about things that are not really needed. The Watch and iPhone are tethered for a reason to collect the heath data and perform upgrades..

    Adding Safari to the watch would be a utterly useless experience.. the screen is way too small to do anything effectively.

    A standalone watch would still have to sync date collected to somewhere (iCloud) eventually, which would then have to sync to your iPhone to actually view it in more detail. I don’t see any great advantages to doing this and more negatives..

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