Walking around Hawk Hill, if you look closely you may notice smart technology everywhere, even on students’ wrists. Apple watches were out on the market by popular demand in April of 2015. They quickly became one of the best selling wearable devices. One of the biggest groups of consumers were high school and college students. For example, in a poll posted 63% of SJU students voted that they have an apple watch while 37% voted that they did not. These watches have features that range from fitness and health to communication, without even having your phone out. 

It is hard to believe that a smart watch could be comparable, or even better than a smartphone, but Apple somehow did it. Like a smartphone, Apple watches are able to make phone calls, send/receive text messages, and even control the music you’re listening to. Additionally, and why many people purchase them, is because these watches are capable of tracking your heart rate, serving as a compass, detecting a fall, reminders of fitness, and much more. Even though these watches resemble a smart phone they are still a very new concept to current generations. And why is that you ask? Because they are always your wrist! 

Apple Watch home screen with featured apps.
Photo By: Nick Karpinski

From the telegraph, to the phone, and now to the Apple watch, every new type of technology affects our society in some way. It may even be so subtle that we don’t even realize it. The telegraph was one of the first major forms of long distance communication, and started the road to a path that back then was hard to imagine. The telegraph was popular to society, but had limitations. It was only accessible in locations where the machines were planted. To make it more difficult, it was sent in morse code then translated on a piece of paper for the person to receive. Then came along the landline. According to Danielle Chrisman, a business teacher, the telephone created an informal environment in terms of communication, although it built a sense of community. Rather than writing out our words, we would just speak them, giving us less time to think about how what we were saying was being portrayed. So, the telephone made our speech more reflective of ourselves.

Flash forward to now, the apple watch is so much more complex than the telephone and the telegraph combined. Instead of getting one or two phone calls a day we get constant notifications, plus the addition of all the other features. We are hyper aware of our heart rate, our exercise, current news, and what is going on in our lives. In one swift motion we can glance at our wrist just to see all of this. Michael Gartenburg, a technology analyst, says, “The (Apple)Watch is powerful because it’s invisible. It’s the device that users don’t need to think about, they have information at a glance.” Each advancement makes access to information more and more rapid.

Girl glancing at apple watch.
Photo By: Kara Borcher

With every new advancement, we become closer and closer to technology becoming part of us. The number of owners of a smart watch, more specifically an Apple watch, is increasing day by day. As this number rises, the more quickly our surroundings and our society change. Who knows what the next newest technology will bring to the table!  


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