On the latest episode of The Talk Show featuring special guest Marco Arment, John Gruber says that we shouldn’t expect to see third-party Apple Watch faces. Ever.
That is never going to happen [third-party Watvh faces]. This is going to make sense to you [Marco Arment], but it’s this weird crevis that Apple and only Apple in the smartwatch world where they do fancy themselves to be a real watch company. And as a real watch company everything you’re going to see is going to be San Fransisco. Now they could enforce that for third-parties possibly.
Any analog dial is going to use those Apple-styled hands. The capsule-shaped hands. And watch companies typically have things like that. For example, the hands on a Rolex are instantly recognizable. In the dials are unmistakably Rolex-styled dials. And Apple fancies itself as a high end watch company.
This is an interesting way of putting it and it makes a lot of sense, but man, would I love a gallery of third-party faces to choose from. In fact, I think Watch faces would be an incredible source of revenue for both developers and Apple.
Also, one thing that strikes me as odd is Apple has allowed third-party faces from companies like Hermès. Perhaps there will be third-party faces but they will be extremely limited.
Either way, it’s a real bummer. I’m hoping Gruber is wrong, but it’s not often that he is.