Apple Passbook pass installed on Apple Watch


Why Marketers Should Pay Attention To The Apple Watch

This was the title of an article ran an article yesterday (click here to read original) by David Saef.

I have to say that I agree with each of his points made, although not necessarily for the same reasons that he made the points.

He talks about:

  • location based notifications
  • second screen experiences
  • marketing to the wearable tech demographic

We give him a resounding yes, yes, and yes on each of these things.  But…

I think he’s missing the specific relationship that the Watch has with Passbook.  Yes, other apps can do similar things to Passbook, but no other app is created by, maintained by, or promoted quite like Apple does with their Passbook.  It’s integral to the Apple Pay functionality, it makes the Watch infinitely more marketable right out of the gate, and anything displayed via Passbook is going to look like it belongs on the Watch since Apple controls the output display and we KNOW how Apple loves a beautiful display.

Whether you’re building your own app (no, I won’t beat that horse again in this post) or using Passbook via your own coding or a SaaS vendor (disclaimer: we are a SaaS vendor, in case you’re new to the site), failing to integrate with Passbook will indeed be a big failing.

Apple is building a house of many cards (or passes, in their specific case) that rest on the same foundation – Apple Passbook.

The technology for HomeKit and HealthKit is similar in nature and execution to PassKit (Apple’s package for creating and distributing Passbook installs), so it leads one to believe that Apple is in for the long haul with the base technology and plans to continue building through its ecosystem on top of it.

Whether or not the Apple Watch turns out to be a novelty product that gets slim distribution, or whether it becomes a must-have accessory for technophiles and the ‘average Joe’ alike, remains to be seen, and will probably take a least a year to eighteen months to reveal the true amount of traction it pulls to the world.  But as long as Apple continues to leverage and build on the technology, they create a universe where it’s more likely that it will weave its way into the fabric of our lives just like the smartphone or the iPod or the laptop/tablet computer has, and once it gets in there, it will be incredibly painful to disengage and discard.


Digital Branding with the Apple Watch

The only real concern I have with all the new Apple-ness like Apple Pay and Apple Watch is the seeming abstinence on Apple’s part to allow this technology outside the Apple ecosystem.  Failing to create an Apple Pay for Android (or perhaps even Windows) devices that qualify physically to execute the code means that Apple is resigning itself to being the “American Express” of the payments and mobile wallets world.  Amex found itself boxed into a corner some years ago – more expensive than Visa/MC for merchants and therefore shunned by many merchants, leading to consumer distaste for the product, in turn leading to an even bigger edge for Visa and MasterCard, which turned out to be ‘everywhere you want to be’…

Not the position for complete and total world dominance, and not likely to become that.  Perhaps the Watch will be a different story and disconnected enough from Apple Pay that it won’t matter.

Want to test a demo pass on your Apple Watch (or iPhone Passbook?) — click the link below —