Monday, September 29, 2014

iPhone 6 PLUS versus HTC ONE (M8) preview

I finally got an iPhone 6 PLUS to go along with my HTC ONE(M8). This isn't meant to be a complete shoot-out. I'm just going to jot down some initial impressions. When I have more time, I may do a full write-up.

This might be an odd comparison since the HTC ONE M8 size is a closer match to the smaller 4.7" iPhone 6. However, because of the screen resolution, I think it is a better comparison to the 6 PLUS. The HTC ONE is straddled between both iPhones in terms of size.

Both are premium machined metal bodied made devices but I have to say the iPhone 6 feels really good in the hand. The HTC One is a bit fat in the middle. However, I'd say the HTC is a better one-handed phone to use.  Prior, I was carrying the iPhone 5 and HTC ONE. Back then, I thought the HTC ONE was huge with it's 5" screen but after a week with the iPhone 6 PLUS, the HTC ONE feels really small. I guess what I am saying is you will get acclimated to the size difference.

The feeling of smallness on the HTC ONE is probably attributed to the UI of Android and HTC Sense. Even though both are 1080p (1920x1080) resolution screens and both have the same physical resolution real estate, the iPhone 6 Plus simply shows more data. The fonts/typeface (even at the smallest settings), the title bars, menu bars are simply way to big on the HTC ONE (M8). Screen real estate is also affected by the Android virtual soft key buttons.

Here are some examples. These are the screenshots of the mail list of my Outlook account in landscape mode.

The same list in portrait mode.

And the contents of the same email newsletter. Note, I had the fullest zoom-out on both emails.

You can say this is the fault of HTC's mail client and their apps. Yes, that is possible. However, even compared to Google's native GMAIL client, the iOS email experience is a little bit better. The gesture selection is very intuitive when it comes to deleting, filing and archiving emails on iOS.

However, not everything is perfect in iOS. There are apps that still need to be optimized for the new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 PLUS. Legacy apps look blown up on the new iDevices. Case in point: Instagram and Facebook. These also suffer from overtly large UI elements. However, due to the volume of iPhone users, I'm pretty certain most apps will be upgraded soon enough. Twitter on iOS 8 looks very good.

Going back to iOS 8 after an absence is pretty good. I really missed the quality apps and I have to say, there are so many good iOS apps.

For example. SSH clients. This is what I use my phones for most of the time. To access remote UNIX/LINUX servers remotely.

Here is Cathode on iOS. A very cool and awesome SSH client.

Now compare it to what I've been using on Android for a while. JuiceSSH.

As you can see the HTC ONE (M8)'s UI is made smaller with status bars and the virtual soft keys.  I simply think screen real estate management can be better handled on Android.

Now what looks more fun to use? Both have SSH-Key authentication and virtual soft keys. If you don't want silly geeky fun of Cathode, there are countless other great iOS SSH client apps. There are also better MySQL Clients, RDP, VNC,etc on iOS.

First party apps are also a joy to use on the new iPhone.

Pages compared to Google Docs.


Compared to Google Docs.

Simply, there is still a lot of awkwardness and I can't pinpoint it on the HTC. Maybe it is the careful selection of typography that Apple spends details on.

Again, the use of real estate on web browsing also makes a big impact on user interaction and satisfaction.  I really like the feel and transitions of the full screen on Safari. I missed the tap to top for months and now I have it back with the iPhone 6.

By default, you don't get full screen on Android as the virtual keys take up space. However, there are 3rd party apps and full screen solutions on the Google Play Store (that don't seem to work quite well).

Again, I guess the point I am driving home with this comparison is that despite the fact both have the same screen resolution, the iPhone 6 Plus makes better use of it. As I said, the HTC ONE (M8) simply feels small now.

I really dig the landscape mode. Yes, I know I've been able to do it for years on Android with various launchers but it is really nice to use it on iOS. It makes having the Plus worth it for me over the standard iPhone 6. As most of my work revolves around emails, remote Linux server connectivity, and database work, I prefer the landscape orientation. I use my iPhone for work and now it is even a better tool at it.

There are also some other major differences. The iPhone 6's camera is simply awesome. I'm not going to go into detail here as you can read dozens of online reviews and analysis from such places as DxoMark. Simply, the iPhone 6 has a very good camera.
The HTC ONE M8 camera's IQ wasn't that bad. Not as bad as you would believe from Internet trolls. But the major problem with the HTC ONE isn't the picture quality, it was the physical construction. The iPhone 6 uses a sapphire coated lens whereas the HTC ONE uses some film coating which leads to scratches. Simply, it easily gets scratch and this really bothered me. I wrote about it here :

The scratched camera lens on the HTC is a common problem and it really pushed me away from using it for photography for months. For months, I carried my Fuji XF1 because I could not rely on the HTC.

Then there is the other issue with the HTC ONE (and Android in general). The SD card. I bought an  128GB microSD card and it was rendered useless as you can read here: .
Seriously, the idea of a removable SD card is a major selling point of the Android ecosystem and Google now has deemed it not worthy so they have been locking it down. For that reasons, I opted to get the 128GB iPhone 6 Plus. Considering the cost of an UHS-1 128GB micro SDXC card, the new Apple price tiering isn't so bad and actually worth it.

Then there is the issue of Linux compatibility. I could never get the HTC (or ANY Android device since the Galaxy Nexus) to properly mount in Debian based Linux. There were work-arounds and stuff like that but it never worked reliably. MTP Android and Linux is still an issue for me. The iPhones (and iOS devices in general) were always problem free for me. They simple mount on Linux and I can copy files easily to my apps. If I wanted to copy a 8GB MKV to a video player, it wasn't a big deal. This was all great until now. As of this writing, I can only mount iOS 8.0.2 and the iPhone 6 safe volume. This is the volume where you can pull images, PDFs,etc. At this time, I can't mount the other volume where I can drag and drop files for my 3rd party apps. So it isn't quite perfect right now but usually after a new iPhone introduction, the libimobile utilities are quickly updated.


It is pretty obvious that I am enjoying the iPhone 6 Plus. With the exception of the camera and sdcard issues on the HTC ONE, they're both good phones. I just think Apple did a really good job on this new iteration. I can see how it can capture sales. This is a solid release. When I have more details, I may go into some more comparisons.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Coolest SSH Terminal Client App for any Smartphone iOS - CATHODE

This has got to be the coolest iPhone SSH app. In fact, it is the coolest SSH client on any mobile smartphone. It is called Cathode.

Notice, how I did the BASH test for shellshock on my new iPhone 6 Plus in the screenshot above!

Last year, I reviewed the Desktop version and I said if they ever made an iOS version, I would buy it. And I did. Cathode is a retro, fun SSH client that mimics and old Cathode Tube monitor. The kind you had back in the late 70s and mid 80s.  The little details are great. For example, the reflections in the screen moves along with your gestures. There is burn-in effects and flicker. I love this little app.

This app wouldn't be good unless it supported what you needed in an SSH client - keyboard function along with SSH Key authentication support. The effects are fully adjustable and customizable.

Here are some images for your enjoyment.

iPhone 6 Plus in landscape mode. Here, I am connected to my FreeNAS box.

This is one of those cool iOS only apps and it is made better on the larger 5.5" iPhone 6 Plus.


Saturday, September 20, 2014

Macally Quick Switch Bluetooth Keyboard. Pair up to 5 devices. Connect to 6 total.

Here is an interesting keyboard. The MacAlly Quick Switch Keyboard. This is a full-size bluetooth keyboard that allows you to pair up to 5 devices in addition to a 6th USB device.

It was cheap and available on Amazon for $29. This is normally $70 but I was able to pick one up at Frys.

I've used multi-paired bluetooth keyboards like the Logitech K810/811 but none of them support 6 devices (5 Bluetooth and 1 USB).

Switching and pairing is pretty straightforward. There is a dedicated button to switch. The keys multi-labelled for Windows and Mac OS.

I really like the fact that it supports USB. So if y ou have a computer without bluetooth, it  connects via micro-USB cable. Unlike the Logitech K810, it is a full size keyboard with a numeric pad.  In addition, it comes with a small tablet fold-up stand. It uses standard AA batteries so there is nothing to recharge. 

Overall, I like the flexibility of multi-device connectivity. However, as a keyboard goes, it is a bit mushy. It doesn't have a good tactile feel or feedback. If you are quick typist, you're not going to like it. It just doesn't have the tactile feel of a Logitech or an Apple keyboard. But if you have multi-devices on your desk, this is well worth the $30 bucks. Let me repeat it again, this can connect to 6 devices total. I have two laptops, two phones, a desktop pc, and a tablet.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Dell's USB OTG dual charging dongle for the Dell Venue 8 Pro

I've finally put my Dell Venue 8 to good use. It has been in the drawer since I got it months ago. After a week of usage, it really didn't fit my use-case. Even with a portable bluetooth keyboard, I found the whole touch experience with Windows 8.1 on an 8" screen painful. I never even use Modern UI, just the traditional Dekstop and using your fingers is hopeless. Desktop operating systems simply do not work with touch on a small screen.

Then out of nowhere, Dell releases a USB-OTG cable that simultaneously supports charging. It is roughly $20 on Dell's website. For those who don't understand the significance, it now means you can charge the Venue 8 at the same time you are using a USB device. Before, you couldn't do that.Thus, the single micro USB port limited it's use as a full time desktop computer.

There has been some D-Y-I type affairs but I wasn't keen on taking that route. This official dongle works pretty good. This should have been provided from the get-go or made available at release of the Venue 8. I paired it up with my Microsoft's All-in-One Multimedia keyboard. The keyboard has a built in trackpad, so now I treat the Venue like a little mini laptop.

I also have a hoot USB 3.0 3-port hub with built in Gigabit. Once you plug it in, you can make up for the lack of networking and multiple USB. It looks like this:

Now, it is a good VPN terminal. I run Cygwin and I use it as SSH client. When I don't use the Dell Venue, it simply stows away nicely.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

10,000 miles / 10 month Fiat 500E electric car update

Many of you readers know I have an Fiat 500E electric car as a commuter. Today, I broke the 10,000 miles marker. It has been 10 months since and I have not yet entered a gas station. It is pretty flabbergasting to think that I drive by multiple gas stations everyday and do not even have a clue about current gas prices.

Hence, this is an update for those curious.

I started my morning with an average range of 101 miles. Some days it can go as high as 111 miles. The car has an EPA range of 88. However, it has surpassed my expectations.

After driving it 15 miles, I still have around 100 mile range and 89% capacity. Folks, this is the effects of regenerative braking. Stop and go commute will do wonders for the batteries.

Most importantly, this car has changed my life. Simply because of the perks. Driving in the solo diamond lane, I save a lot of time from my commute. I get to spend more time with my kids. In the morning, I am generally less grumpy. Pictured below is a daily scene. Commuters stuck at the Toll plaza; waiting as long as 30-40 minutes while solo carpoolers like myself just whizz on by. On average, I am saving more than 45 minutes each way. That time simply adds up. I save money on bridge toll. I get to pick up my kids earlier from day care; saving me those costs as well.

I'm actually worried about what happens when my lease ends. I'm contemplating how things will be like when the carpool benefits end in 2019. Yes, you can call me selfish but those perks are just too good.

Now lets talk about fuel economy. After my one-way commute into work, I have about 89 mile range left. I've driven more than 22 miles. Getting back home, my tank will be left with 60 or so miles of range to do errands. Not bad.

For over 10 months, my average economy is 4.2-4.7 miles per kWh. That is simply impressive or it just means I am a really good driver who knows how to get the most of his electric car. Based on today's readings, at 10 cents a Kw, my morning trip cost me 46 cents. My other car, a Range Rover Sport would have cost $6.23. This is not including the toll difference because I get a discounted bridge toll for being green. So the Range Rover would have cost me $12 just to drive into work versus $2.96 on my Fiat 500E. A 50MPG Prius would have to pay $7.76 (22/50MPG * $4 gas plus $6.00 toll).

Simply, the savings, you can't really complain.

Overall,the car hasn't been giving me any real problems. Like my last update, there were two  more instances where my car did not charge overnight. The car is on a timer and it starts to charge after 11pm for the cheaper rates. I don't know what the cause is. It could be my EVSE charging station, the grid, or the car itself. However, in one case, I notice the plugin electrical connector wasn't fully inserted. I've also notice the EVSE and car sometimes does not fully lock in and engage the connection. So now, I simply plug in, unplug and re-plug it in until I hear an audible click. The audible click tells me the car is fully locked into the charger and is ready to go. Since then, I have not had any charging problems.

After 10 months, I don't get irritated by carpool cheats anymore. When I first got my car and started driving in the HOV lane, I notice rampant carpool cheats. For some reason it really irked me. There are lots of people who want to risk $400-$600 fines just to drive in the carpool lanes. Those drivers are often rude and aggressive. I totally get that people want to get to work and home on time. Everyone is in a rush. By now, I sort of get numb. I simply let them in front of me especially where I know where the cops will hide. I'm beginning to see the patterns of how the police catch these guys and I'm going to keep it my secret. If they cheat, they will eventually get caught by the police. I've had two encounters with Police who didn't think my car was electric until they saw the decals.

So folks, look at the picture above. If you plan to cheat the carpool, the cops will eventually catch you. It is only a matter of time.

So there you have it. Nothing exciting. Same old fun. Same great fuel economy. No gas stations. Simply, a completely different outlook on driving cars.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Apple Watch. A Casual Observation

So Apple finally introduces the Apple Watch and everyone is going into frenzy. As I've said it many times before, I'm not the target market for any smart wearables. However, that isn't going to stop anyone else in my household from getting one.

For the first time in a long time, my wife was fixated and I can see she is very interested; especially in the gold red strap one pictured above. She is not a watch wearer despite being married to a watch collector. I've bought her many high-end Swiss watches and she simply doesn't wear them. She isn't into tech gadgets either. She is happily content with her hand-me down electronics from me.

This is were most men have lost sight of what is happening. Everyone is debating how fugly it looks. Everyone is comparing it to the Motorola 360. It isn't about your personal taste. Taste and style is subjective. I've been in watch debates since 1994 on Usenet. Rolex vs Omega, Breguet vs Patek, Zenith vs IWC. So I'm a veteran at this and I've learned from a long, long,long time ago, taste is entirely subjective. Having said that, I think the Apple watch has a strong chance of succeeding in the mall watch category from $300-$1200. The High End Swiss watches ($4,000 and up) I enjoy won't be affected. I strongly believe this but the low-end is ripe for the taking.

Why? Build quality, presentation and marketing.

I am very impressed with the website and overall presentation.

The build quality is impeccable. I am studying the details. The raised and bezeled sapphire glass, the edge chamfer, the grain of the matte SS on the bracelet, the meshed Milanese strap,etc. These are all top notch detailing that no one in this market (Smartwatch) has. Pebble doesn't have it. Nor does Samsung and Motorola. Also, for the first time, I never saw an Apple product that lists material properties until now. This is what the Swiss do. They boldly note the SS is 316L (high grade SS steel found on Omegas, Panerai,etc). For comparison, Samsung, LG uses 304 steel. Motorola is absent in this disclosure. They also note the use of Sapphire; the pre-requisite for a premium timepiece. Note my use of the word premium instead of luxury. These are two distinct markets.

The premium market consist of fashion brands. These are Movado, Michael Kors, Armani, Gucci, Burberry and the likes. These are brands with absolutely zero horological domain expertise. They often use cheap $5-10 quartz movement with cheap B-O-M material cost and sell watches in the $300-1200 market. We call these "mall watches." They're often found at department stores rather than high end watch boutiques. The Apple watch competes with these.  Yes, it competes with Samsung and Motorola but on the grander scope of things, based on the projected price point, the "mall watch" is the target. I strongly believe this because their recent executive hires are people with retail channel distribution in the luxury/premium markets. I am guessing they want to sell this at airport kiosks and high end malls around the world - Frankfurt, Dubai, Tokyo. Why else would they poach a Tag Huer and enlist Burberry's top exec?  They invited fashion bloggers, creative directors of most fashion rags to the Apple watch unveiling during the busiest Fashion week in New York. While the bottom of the pole reporters were in New York, you can see many of the Creative Editors of Vogue, Vogue UK, Marie Claire, InstaStyle in Cupertino.

Back to my wife. She was fixated and her eyes were all on the gold models. Some of you guys out there are still stuck on the round circle and do not think a square watch will work. Well, let me present to you the Cartier Santos. A $5,000 watch. Women love this watch. They have no problem with rectangular time pieces.

Here is the Santos in a sports setting.

Now look at the Apple watch in the marketing promo. On women. I assume these are the 38mm models.

They're not Cartiers. My wife would never spend $5000 on a Cartier (she has no problem with me spending that on my mens' watches). Simply, she doesn't see the value. However, a $1000 gold case and red leather deployant strap is a different thing altogether. The Apple watch looks inoffensive. It is also highly customizable. In short, it hits the target market she is in. The Premium, fashion soccer mom market.

My point is this, this may not be attractive to you (or me), it is attractive to others. Now, I showed her the Motorola 360 to get her opinion. I showed her a picture of something she has context with - 40mm sports watch. Here is a picture I found on the internet that gives a good comparison.  That is a 46mm Motorola 360 next to what appears to be a Rolex Sub (or knockoff) which is 40mm.

Just for context, 40mm Rolex on Charlize Theron. This is a "large's" man's watch. To her, the Moto 360 is comically too big. This is before she even put eyes on the flat tire screen.

It will be interesting to see how this all plays out. I am starting to think Apple may be on to something. Despite my Luddite attachments to my Rolex and Omegas, I think there is a market here. It may not appeal to me but I can see it appealing to my significant others.

Update: Here is a really good post why Square/Rectangular screens are better for swatch watches. It is a very compelling argument. You basically need a larger circle to cover equal amount of content when compared to an equal size rectangular screen. With the smaller the screen (38mm for women), touch UI will be exponentially harder to work with. This validates the use of a digital crown in the design process.

Monday, September 8, 2014

iWatch, SmartWatches, Moto 360, Wearables. Again.

(My 4 year old son at the time trying to figure out which watch he will inherit from me)

This is a topic that simply cannot die. For over 25 years, I've been known as the "watch guy" in my circles. Yeah, I'm the guy with the fetish for expensive Swiss mechanical watches. So obviously, everyone comes to me for my watch opinions. With the introduction of the Motorola 360 and the anticipation of the Apple iWatch, more and more people are coming to me for my advice and opinion.

Well, lets do this one more time.

Will I buy one?

No, I won't buy something to replace my Swiss watches. I will not buy a Smartwatch. However, I am open to a fitness band. I will buy something that can be worn on my right wrist; reserving my left arm for watches. I'm in my forties and health is a big deal to me. I have friends dying right and left. I do have medical and health issues so a compelling health sensor would make me buy a wearable.

Moto 360

It is an ugly watch and that is my opinion. I'm not into the flat tire design (where the bottom is cut-off). That is my biggest complaint. However, taste is entirely subjective. It also looks to much like it is trying too hard to be an ultra-thin museum piece when it isn't. It is girthy. I also looks like a cheap "Mall fashion watch" in the theme of Movado and Rado. Those are quartz watches I don't like except those are ultrathin and quartz makes sense. The 360 is so big, you can fit literally a pocket watch movement in it like the Unitas 697. In short, it looks like a girly fashion watch yet at the same time, it is monstrously big.

I prefer the LG G R watch. The thicker bezel doesn't bother me on the LG because if you look at any Swiss watch I have, they all have bezels. They also all have traditional lugs to swap straps. Here is the LG R watch. It looks like a fashion watch too but it is more pleasant in my eyes. I read that people don't like the thick bezel nor the lugs. Obviously,  those people prefer the minimalist, cleaner 360.

That is just my opinion on looks.

Most importantly, I think the 46mm size of the Moto360 is way too big. Monstrously big for what it is. Arstechnica did a comparison ( and their comparison is a bit off and let me explain.

36mm is a women's size. Small Men's size are 38mm like the Datejust and Explorer. 42mm is a slight creep from the average large men's watch.

Now for some context.
40mm is large. It has been considered large for over 50 years; notably with watches like the Rolex Submariner, GMT Master. Those are manly watches. Here is Charlize Theron wearing a 40mm Rolex. It is a large watch.

Most of my watches are 40mm and I'm comfortable with that. 40mm with 20mm strap width is the perfect Men's large watch size. A good majority of the historical iconic classics fit in that dimension. Here is what most Alpha males historically worn. 40mm.

Here you have Che with a Submariner, Apollo 13 Jack Swiggert with his GMT Master, and various James Bond with their 40mm Submariners.

In short, your masculinity was never at question with 40mm. Every cool male figures in my life wore 38 to 40mm. 38mm was considered to be on the dressy side and 40mm was the casual, sporty side. All the Hollywood actors, test pilots (Chuck Yeager), NASA astronauts, explorers wore 40mm. Even the high end tactical secret forces of the her Royal Navy special ops wore 40mm. It was a successful recipe for Rolex for over 60 years. It was the optimal size.

Here is a comparison to a Rolex 40mm. See why I call it comically big?

Then around the mid 1990s, Panerai broke the mold and introduced the 44mm Panerais. Hollywood macho celebrities like Schwarzenegger, Stallone, Statham, and many leading men started to wear Panerais because they were over-size and blingy without the negative Rolex stigma. Pictured below is a 44mm Panerai.

Now, there are some outliers. Panerai does make some models in 47mm.

Obliviously, you can tell it is an outlier size. Some say you need the persona and physical stature to pull that off. The Moto 360 is not that far off the mark at 46mm. Except, a 44-47mm Panerai looks really masculine and macho. A Moto 360 still looks nerdy. In short, the entire cast of the Expendables wear 42-47mm watches. Compare an A-List Hollywood action star to your typical nerd geek who will be wearing a smart watch that are both similar in size. This pretty much eliminates a large percentage of the population; women.

Outlier size won't appeal to many. I wear a 44mm Panerai on occasion and I can feel the heft and that watch is the most banged up watch I have. I'm always accidentally banging that watch on doors,tables,etc. Other Panerai owners feel the same.

Omega and Rolex started to supersize to 42-43mm as well. With this over-size watch craze, some of the younger generation think 40mm is no longer large but regular size. There is a very tangible big difference every mm you grow on in size on a watch. The perception is much more so than the weight.

Battery life

Like I wrote earlier, I'm into Swiss mechanical watches. None of my watches need batteries. They are infinitely powered. The whole idea of 1 to 2 day battery life is alien to me. I'd go bat-crazy. I remember a few times where I was hospitalized for 2 days and all my electronic gadgets died on me - iPad, laptop, smartphones. The only thing keeping me sane was my watch. I've been on travelling expeditions (buses, trains) in 3rd world countries for days. No smartwatch would obviously work in that scenario.

They need to obviously work on the battery life.

What would I buy if I did?
It is hard to say. I may get one for novelty purposes but nothing is going to replace my Panerai, Rolex, Omega or whatever I have.

The idea of a square case doesn't bother me. It doesn't have to be circular as I'm not looking for a watch. I prefer long battery life. But I've seen decent square watch cases like JLC and the Heuer Monaco.

But as I noted, I'm not looking for a watch per se. I'm open to a fitness band tracker I can wear on my right wrist.

I would go for something like this. Yes, I know some of you guys will think of it as a girly bracelet but I don't have those hang-ups. I'm wearing some 40-44mm beefy Swiss tool watch on my left wrist so I don't care.

Now, the thing that would make me instantly buy something like this are:

1. Battery embedded in the bracelet. This would compensate for the short battery life that is causing problems for many of the OEMs. If the whole bracelet was an extended battery and if it gets 4 days of use, I'm sold. But I would only buy something like this on the premise of it being a fitness, health sensor band. If it is mainly a watch, I'd have to consider my techy gadget curiosity over my horological passions.

2. Some extended phone calling capabilities without the need to tether a phone. If Apple was able to convince Phone carriers to allow multi-shared SIM plans, that could be a big. The idea is with two SIMs, you can share the same phone number and capabilities on your phone and wearable. So if the phone is in your car while at the gym, you can make calls with just your wearable. This would be an instant buy for me. However, I doubt this would ever happen.

Will Apple kill the Swiss industry.

I see this question come up a lot. Answer. No. That is a big pipe dream. Rolex is a 8 billion dollar company with 4.5b in annual sales. They generate over 800,000 Chronometers. Their average watch sales for $8,000. SWATCH group, LVMH, Richemont are equally big. Boutiques like Patek and Lange Sohne will never be effected just as Ferrari will never be effected by Toyota. The comparisons and analogies to Blackberry/Nokia are so way off the mark. We are talking about luxury goods here. A different dynamic. I know people who drop $25,000 on a Panerai and a $250 smartwatch isn't going to sway their opinion. People buy engagement and wedding gifts that are suppose to last and be used for decades.

There are a million reasons why the whole idea is nonsense. No one is going to replace their high end watches. Smart watches will be disruptive. Sure. It will effect the market under $1,000. Possibly even encroach in the $1,500 range. Casio, Garmin, and many of the fitness trackers will be effected. Some of the mall fashion brands will be hurt - Coach, Armani, Gucci, and Movado. But that is about it.

But high end Swiss mechanical? No.  I buy watches because I like mechanical miniaturization. There is simply no comparison to something made from electronics with something made from hundreds of mechanized parts. Watches also appreciate in value over time. I buy them as life-long companions. I have some watches I bought new that are over 25 years old. They don't have the 2 year replacement/update cycle. I can hand down my watches to my kids so it is a generational thing. Craft. There are a million other reasons why Swiss watch buyers won't give in. It is mostly emotional and no form technical rationalization is going to change that. I have friends and family who are heavily tech and gadget oriented. Those with Swiss watches share my similar opinion. Nothing is going to replace their Rolex and Panerais.

Some guys save up years to buy their Omega Speedmaster because they were in awe with NASA. Some get Rolex Submariners because they remember their cool uncle or dad, or perhaps, James Bond. These are longings that many have as a kid until they grow up. No one is going to long for a disposable gadget. My son, who is six, really wants my Omega Seamaster and Speedmaster Professional. He's been stuck on those two watches since he was three. He also know they're special by observing how much care I take after them. An electronic gadget doesn't have those appeal.

I've been called an old fart for this Luddite reasoning and I'm OK with that. It is the same feeling art lovers will never replace an Rothko with some Adobe Illustrater drawing.

In closing, these are my thoughts for the time being.

Update: With the Apple Watch announced, here are my thoughts on another post.