The best smartwatch on the market is the Apple Watch, and at this point, almost no one argues because it is well known by everyone, both experts and users. Unfortunately, the smartwatch is only accessible to users with an iPhone as their personal phone. But it wasn’t always the idea.
For a long time, it has been said that if you want an Apple Watch, you have to have an iPhone, as Apple’s wearable simply does not work with Android devices.
However, things could have been very different for one of the best smartwatches in the world, as reported today by Bloomberg.
Compatibility with Android could have reached a wider audience
According to the article, Apple was on the verge of launching an Apple Watch compatible with Android in an attempt to expand its health features to a much larger audience than Apple could reach so far. But in the end, the idea, dubbed as Project Fennel, was canceled at the last minute.
The report states that business concerns prevailed over health considerations. The Apple Watch is a key driver of iPhone sales because it needs to be paired with one of Apple’s devices. “If they opened up the watch to Android,” a Bloomberg source said, “they would dilute the value of the watch for the iPhone.”
Unlike when Apple brought iTunes to Windows despite then-CEO Steve Jobs’ initial staunch opposition, it seems unlikely that the Apple Watch will reach users outside of Apple in the near future, if it ever does.
The users, the real losers
In many ways, it’s a pity that the Apple Watch has never become compatible with Android. On the other hand, keeping the Apple Watch as an iPhone exclusive is also a understandable move that has paid off in different ways since the wearable was launched in 2015.
According to Statista, Apple was responsible for 22% of the global shipments of wearables (the highest for a single brand) in the second quarter of 2023.
The Bloomberg report also suggests that Apple plans to make significant advancements in the health capabilities of its wearable. This includes their plans to introduce technology that would enable non-invasive monitoring of blood glucose, eliminating the need for users to draw blood.
And of course, all these improvements could save lives for many more people if all citizens had access to this technology, regardless of whether they use Android or iOS. Hopefully, Apple will change its mind someday.