I saw an interesting article on TheVerge this week about Apple Watch, and how it seems to be going back to the Press To Talk style of mobile communication. But is it really a trend of things to come, or just a fluke that will once again fade away?
For those whippersnappers too young to remember, PTT was a walkie-talkie style of mobile communication that was done between two phones within a short distance of one another. You pressed a button, talked and it came in through the frequency of another compatible phone in the area.
I still remember going to summer camp, and the dorky adults driving us up there in big white vans going PTT through their leather-case, bulky cellphones. It was that kind of thing.
It was popular for awhile, but eventually began to fade out once texting became big, and mobile carriers started offering unlimited plans for less cash. Suddenly, PPT just didn’t seem as useful.
Now, it seems to be making a comeback. Some apps have been developed over the past year that allow you to leave voice messages similar to text, without having to make an actual call. Though it wasn’t so trendy this time around to catch anyone’s notice.
Until this past week, that is, when the Watch was unveiled by Apple. One of their features? A PPT style function that allows you to leave voice messages through text. Not quite the same as the mobile talkies of yore, but similar enough that it shows a small trend potentially blowing up into a big deal again.
What makes this so interesting is that the Watch may have stumbled on the first feature that makes it truly unique on the wearable technologies circuit. Most of the functions are bland, but that one actually opens the communication world up to smartwatches. It is the first example of legitimate adaptions that make it a sci-fi nerd’s wet dream.
I know I complain a lot about smartwatches, and even had some cynicism about the Watch. But I have a confession to make: I think the voice message chat feature is really cool. Like the hand comm patches that were in Babylon 5 (yes, I just referenced Babylon 5, wanna fight?).
Enough to run out and by a Watch? No, but certain enough to admit that The Verge had a point. If Apple is getting on board, and this is a first time upgrade for smartwatches in general, you can bet we will be seeing a lot more PTT style communication in the future.