If you saw Apple’s iPhone opening this week, you may have wondered if you were watching an emergency training seminar.
Apple CEO Tim Cook kicked off the annual event Wednesday with a three-minute clip showing how the Apple Watch saved lives by asking people for help.
One man recounted how he was skating on a frozen river when the ice collapsed. Another was saved from a plane crash in a rural area during the winter, as was a high school student who managed to escape from encountering a bear.
Meanwhile, in another instance, a 27-year-old high school teacher rushed to the emergency room after her Apple Watch detected an abnormal heart rate. The teacher said, “My doctor said, ‘It was your watch that saved your life.’”
Apple has long presented its products as tools for creativity, productivity, a positive lifestyle filled with friends and family, healthy daily living, and outdoor activities.
Some remain on display at the event this year but there was a new message as well. The giant released many of its products and features as safety nets in a dangerous world.
Apple has announced new automotive crash detection technology for the Apple Watch and iPhone. The company says it can use the device’s barometer, GPS and microphone to pinpoint the “precise moment of impact.”
“We truly hope you never need it but feel a little bit safer every time you get into a car,” said Apple’s vice president of sensing and connectivity, Ron Huang, during the announcement.
iPhone and Apple Watch: Emergency SOS
The giant also announced an Emergency SOS tool for iPhones that depends on satellites if, for instance, you’re lost in the middle of nowhere and cellular service does not work.
Additionally, it presented a new temperature monitoring device on the Apple Watch that can be utilized to keep tabs on diseases when several people may still be struggling with pandemic health concerns.
Although debatably a continuation of Apple’s focus on health features, specifically with its smartwatches, the underline of these petrifying use cases still received quite the scrutiny from industry watchers.
“It was a little surprising to see Apple reach for the alarmist approach and position their devices as potential life savers,” stated market research firm IDC’s research director, Ramon Llamas.
Over the past few years, Apple has pledged to its consumers that its products can aid in making a safer digital environment for them – one with stricter privacy protections and family-friendly content.
Currently, its new features seem to have extended to keeping people safe in the actual world.
“These emergency features are like the safety bags in your car: you aren’t going to need them all the time, but you’re grateful when you do,” Llamas added.
The change in pitch comes as Apple faces a new economic environment that could make it more challenging to persuade consumers to pay three to four-figure amounts to upgrade their existing technology – mainly due to the few feature-difference from the previous product.
On Wednesday, the giant presented minor upgrades to its devices. For instance, the iPhone devices provided updates to camera systems, a new interactive lock screen, and on the Pro models, a faster performance.
On the other hand, the Apple Watch Ultra is aimed toward extreme sports participants.
“Refinement over revolution isn’t a bad thing, but if purses are tightening with the economy, then these announcements are a harder sell without anything groundbreaking,” stated market firm ABI Research’s research director, Eric Abbruzzese.