By Stephen Schenck | November 13, 2013 10:50 AM
The sort of mass-market smartwatches we’ve seen with designs like the Pebble or the Galaxy Gear may each do things a lot differently, but there’s been at least one constant: we’ve generally been looking at single-size, unisex models. And really, doing that makes a lot of sense; we’re still trying to work out the usability curve on these kind of devices, and going with a larger display offers functional benefits that outweigh more aesthetic concerns. One manufacturer may be looking to shake things up, however, as analyst reports suggest that Apple intends to introduce a pair of iWatch models with varying screen sizes: one for men, and one for women.
Supposedly, Apple has its sights on releasing a 1.3-inch iWatch for women, and a 1.7-inch iWatch for men, both with OLED displays. For comparison, the Pebble has a 1.26-inch screen, and the Galaxy Gear’s measures 1.63 inches.
It’s an interesting idea, and having the smaller option very well could attract additional attention from shoppers turned off by the idea of an excessively bulky smartwatch. But at the same time, we’re concerned how effective the same UI might be across both versions; when you’re designing for a scale like this, surface area is at a premium, and just because something works on a 1.7-inch screen doesn’t necessarily mean it will translate well down to a smaller display.
Beyond this size issue, we hear that Apple’s placed a premium on the iWatch being lightweight and power efficient, and that its release timetable is being given priority over any efforts to release an Apple HDTV.