•   over 8 years ago

What is the point to play game on Gear but not my high-res smart phone?

I can see that over 600 of the submissons are simple touch games/utitlty applications.
The problem is that if we already have a high resolution smart phone like galaxy S5, why would we need to use the app in a much smaller screen?

You have your smart phone almost 24/7 with you already

I just think that most apps are not using the device capabilities of Gear
and just releasing a downgraded, low res Android app into the 320x320 smart watch

I can't get it


  •   •   over 8 years ago

    Why read a text message on your tiny watch screen? Why look at the time on such a tiny screen when your phone is within reach?

    Convenience is the primary reason in all of these cases. Being able to play a 30-second game when waiting on something can be useful when it would take time to take out one's phone and unlock it.

    But everyone has their own preferences on how they wish to use a smart watch. :)

  •   •   over 8 years ago

    I think @yurichan is right, the "promise" of these new smartphones is that they either enhance the value of a phone app or have a use case that is better than the phone.

    I check the time on my smart watch because it is no decline in the quality of my outcome vs. the phone (time is time), although I do find myself checking my phone clock regularly. Pushing SMS to my watch creates marginal value, but only pushing SMS from my wife creates higher value.

    The "six weeks to 100 situps" is a match for the watch, because I don't want to carry my phone (or have it up on the treadmill), or a "take your pill" reminder -- all better than on the phone. I think what @yurichan might assert is that the decline in quality of experience from phone>watch outpaces any convenience hopes. Also, you check the time, get sports scores, get alerts on your watch for "speed" more than convenience (there is a difference).

    @PHDGaming is right that some people will want to play games on their watch. However, I suspect that will not be the glue that holds people's interest in these Gear watches, and with the current UX that makes "install/use once/delete" (i.e., "trial") a lot more difficult than on the phone, I think Gear is not going to see the install velocity on these watches that a phone might experience, which ties into one of the evaluation criteria (commercial potential).

    There's 928 apps in this gallery, only about 725 of them have got the "Submitted to Samsung Gear Challenge" on their developer page, and of those only about 70% are in the app store right now. Fortunately one that looks like it made all three cuts is @#$% Away (http://gearapp.challengepost.com/submissions/25067-@#$%-away)!

    The judges are from Wearable World, Lark, Nuance and Techcrunch -- it will interesting to see if they tilt towards health/fitness/quantified self. There's only about 45 health/fitness apps, and they run the gamut from a half dozen "drink more water" apps (I like Watermeter the best) to a pretty cool sleep tool (http://challengepost.com/software/bedtime-calculator-for-gear--2) to the inimitable Pedometer Buddha (http://gearapp.challengepost.com/submissions/25356-pedometer-buddha).

  •   •   over 8 years ago

    Excellent , balanced analysis . I totally agree with you that developing a truly sticky gearapp (that gets repeat usage) entails designing to meet a need in a manner that is significantly better than a mobile phone app. And games may not be the best genre of apps to do this. But there again.... we still need to see exactly what the numbers say ... and people like games ....
    As one who had an app out couple months ago, I can confirm that install velocity has ... well ... taken quite the nosedive. But the app in question was a game and not free.

    @yurichan. I also agree with you. But do you mind providing more details on the capabilities of the gear you are referring to ? Do you mean the sensors ?
    I guess one reason for this may be that developers did NOT have access to the gear 2 heartrate sensors in the current SDK.

  •   •   over 8 years ago

    I agree with @vykthur.
    When we look to numbers this can feed facts about real needs.
    Wearable devices (wrist in this case), not created in favor of health and sports, I know they are important genre but what about notifications? Driving critical access to your phone?
    The user experience of smart watches doesn't promise a lot because of the very tiny screen, also I don't wanna look at my watch for more than 45 sec. Just because this does hurting my eyes.
    Games are great stuff. I like games, there are alot of cool games here, however this is not the real thing that really need for many users in the market.
    there is no gpu there and games are very bad consumers without gpus.
    At the end of this, good luck for all contest members.

  •   •   over 8 years ago

    I made one of those games, proud of it, and all the comments i get from people who downloaded it are happy and satisfied, supply and demand, you dont need to get it if they want it

  •   •   over 8 years ago

    @devThriller ..
    The announcements are in. It appears the games werent outrightly penalized by the judges, though the selection process is still fuzzy. The health apps had a fair showing too. What are your takes on the final list ? If you dont mind, please feel free to share .

    In the end, congratulations to all who made it to the next round, and congrats to those who havent. All are winners.


  •   •   over 8 years ago

    @vykthur: Congrats on your two victories in Round 1!.

    Here is my take: There are a lot of great apps in the winner's category that represent some great use of Gear 2 development environment. From the winner pool it's easy to pick out 10 that really create great value because they are on your wrist (some of the camera remote tools) and 20 that you can't imagine anyone actually installing, and if they do, you can't imagine them using twice.

    If I were the product owner for Gear 2, and I was trying to imagine what 5 apps I might feature in a TV ad that would make people say "I need to get that watch" along the same lines as the cool apps featured in the iPhone launch...I don't know if any of the entries beat out some of the already built-in-apps like the pedometer, heart monitor, or TV remote.

    I might have better luck picking out five apps to pitch to the current users to try and get hooked into their daily routine to generate some level of Gear 2 habit in order to avoid the fate of so many wearables...dust gathering.

    As for the health/fitness apps -- all of the winners are really either wellness (drink water, do pushups, track running) or some vague health data storage apps. None of the HEALTH apps made it through -- there were a couple of quit smoking apps and others related to chronic care. None of the winners support a potential use case of a physician "prescribing" a Gear 2 or delivering value that you probably wouldn't prefer to do from your phone. Of these, I still like the "Just Six Weeks" app the best for really having a value in being on the wrist. I tried both the "drink more water apps" and they eventually became annoying (as expected) -- it's easy to imagine the typical "tracker" user cycle of "I'm excited by it", followed by "I lie to it" followed by "I break up with it".

    I do know that another extremely large tech company that aspires in the near term to evolve their market dominance and make a big splash in wearables contacted six of the health submissions in this competition, and two of the tools, for potential inclusion in their big launch and alignment with their phone os later this year. Five of the six health apps that got contacted did not make round two and only one of the two tools made it through the initial screen. There is some mis-alignment on 6 of the 8 apps.

    I think if I were in charge of building out the developer ecosystem for the Gear 2, I would be psyched at the volume and variety of the new additions to the app portfolio. If I were the product owner of the Gear 2, I don't know if I would look at the outcome of this Challenge and think I was going to move a lot more watches, create addiction to my product, or that a new use case or consumer value prop was discovered.

  •   •   over 8 years ago

    #devThriller , thanks for sharing and the kind felicitations regarding my app. Again, very balanced commentary. I do agree with you. However, stickiness/habit formation is a complex thing to model into apps. There are "known" drivers of stickiness (http://goo.gl/GjZfH1) which developers will do well to integrate into their apps, but ... Im not sure it will "guarantee" habit formation in the long run.
    I also agree with you again regarding the outcomes of the challenge . From the organizers perspective , the ecosystem HAS grown in the last 3 months, an undoubtedly favourable first outcome. But the wow/sticky/magic app outcome is still at large. Perhaps round 1 and round 2 were structured to meet these different outcomes ? We'll have to wait and see if its possible to polish some of the brass into gold :)
    One more thing ... Im not very clear on your meaning of real health apps. If you don't mind, would be great for you to give an example or two e.g would Just 6 weeks (a fantastic app) be representative ? Would a health app be one that essentially meets all or some of the 4 requirements of sensing, tracking, analyzing and providing actionable feedback ? Could it also be that more sensors (or better access to current sensors .. heartrate monitor is currently not supported in the SDK) would be needed to reach the "doctor prescribed" level ?
    Some of the decisions were unexpected, (some even serendipitous ) . And it is concerning that 6/8 health apps perceived as good didn't make the cut .
    Overall, I have learned alot from participating in this challenge, and from the discussion page here :)


  •   •   over 8 years ago

    oh nice article - my app is one of the health apps that made it - i kept features back due to a) time and b) to have something to do in phase 2.

    vykthur - nice white paper.

    I think the reason many didn't make the cut was design related, lots of the entries have what I call 'coder graphics'. I probably spent more time on design / aesthetics / wire frames and user flows that actual coding. Also I put aside a day for making the video. ok my video is very basic but it tells a story.

    I put my chances of making the next cut at way below the statistical 1 in 5 chance.

  •   •   over 8 years ago

    @vykthur: wellness apps or fitness apps encourage general good behaviors like "exercise more" or "eat more vegetables" and tend to be 90% trackers. "100 situps in 100 Days" or "Drink More Water". Health apps are condition related, often with outcomes specific to the user, for example there was a submission that got a business deal out of this competition (but did not make Round #2) for pre-diabetes and one that created a list of preventive health recommendations based on some government guidelines. HEALTH apps have different engagement levers than the Endeavor report you included -- they pull on things like 1. Facilitate required regular activity (e.g. recording glucose, 2. Connect patient with their current position in condition, 3. Provide regularly needed tool for condition (e.g., carb look up), 4. Connectivity with health system.

    For the health/wellness apps that made it through to Round 2, none jump out at me as a great business opportunity. The "do more of this" apps (eat fruit, drink water) all have tons of free competitors and in general, consumers will TRY free before PAYING for better design -- they might PAY for a "do more" related to another experience like P90 or the Paleo diet, but not just a general tracker. Either people, or the health system will PAY for things related to tangible long term outcomes -- like heart health, or quit smoking or lose 7% of your weight -- consumers tend to have a stronger STARTING engagement point with these situations because of an EVENT or recommendation from their physician (versus just having read an another article in Men's Health about drinking more water).

  •   •   over 8 years ago

    some reason to play game on gear:
    - avoid battery drain on my phone
    - the game is only playable on gear. E.g. needs pedometer

    Twenty years ago we have no mobile phone. So I played my stopwatch as 'game'. It was fun. Lol

  •   •   over 8 years ago

    @devThriller .. Thanks for clarifying!
    On a slightly tangential but related note, a few things about foqus ..
    Foqus is definitely at its early design phases. A few of its future roadmap features are listed in its description. But at the heart of it, I believe its tied to an example of this "condition" of which you speak. Non ? Its arguable that the two things it does, it accomplishes "better" than smartphone counterparts. I may be wrong, and Im happy to get your thoughts on this. Feel free to lay it out as you see it, foqus is happy to take a battering :)

    @viente ..
    I agree with you. Some trends are counter intuitive. Why do we leave our widescreen desktop monitors to continuously browse the internet on our smaller phone screens ? As developers, I guess we are tasked to created the experiences that would change behavior (create new trends ....) and create habit (as mentioned by @devThriller above). Lets see how this works with our gear 2 apps!


Comments are closed.