Qualitative study of Apple Watch users shows enthusiasm is cooling

Apple Watch usage is dropping off as the novelty factors fades away, according to a qualitative study by MBLM, a “brand intimacy agency”, reports Luke Dormehl in Cult of Mac. While Apple’s wearable has found a place in many owners’ gadget ecosystems, the device is still viewed as distinctly nonessential.

The MBLM ethnography study is a year-long examination of 11 Apple Watch users aged 13 to 65 years. Overall, findings comprise approximately 1,500 open-ended responses and 45 hours of video footage.


  • The watch is one of several devices in our panel members’ daily lives.
  • Compared to other Apple devices, the watch is nonessential.
  • Unsure of when it will improve, users default to the obvious: it’s a watch.
  • A major limitation is the watch is an appendage to the iPhone.
  • It is constantly compared to the iPhone and generally fares poorly.
  • There are doubts about the watch’s usefulness and significance as a game-changing wearable.
  • Participants feel constrained with the watch until significant updates; users are withdrawing.
  • This appears more situational than a long-term statement about the watch.
  • Core functions must work better or more easily.
  • Siri is the biggest of many issues around responsiveness that frustrate users and create unnecessary friction.