The Apple Watch is a real product that Apple is actually shipping, which went on sale in 2015. But, what if Apple had launched a wearable to match the Apple II back in 1985?
That’s exactly what one maker has done, to which he’s posted the idea of the Apple II Watch on Instructables, which has recently garnered new attention for the creativity and genius of the whole thing. It was posted by “Aleator777” some months ago, and even includes its own faux press release announcing the wearable. The Apple II Watch features a “knob” to hit return while using the interface, and it even includes a speaker for notification sounds. It even includes a printed circuit board inside!
Here’s that press release:
“Apple Computer Inc.® today unveiled Apple // watch™—its most personal device ever. Apple // watch introduces a revolutionary design and A BASIC USER INTERFACE created specifically for a smaller device. Apple // watch features A KNOB, an innovative way to SCROLL, without obstructing the display. The KNOB also serves as the RETURN button and a convenient way to PRESS RETURN. The CATHODE RAY TUBE display on Apple // watch features TEXT, a technology that ALLOWS YOU TO READ, providing a new way to quickly and easily access BASIC PROGRAMS. Apple // watch introduces a built-in VERY SMALL SPEAKER that discreetly enables an entirely new vocabulary of alerts and notifications you can HEAR. Apple Computer custom-designed its own 6502 PROCESSOR CUT IN HALF to miniaturize an entire computer architecture onto a PRINTED CIRCUIT BOARD. Apple // watch also features TWO DISK DRIVES to pair seamlessly with your MAGNETIC STORAGE DISKS.”
The creator started out deciding between making just a miniature Apple II to put on his wrist, a replica, or something altogether new. Thankfully he decided on the latter, and created something that does look like an Apple II, just shrunken down to fit on the wrist, but also function as well.
“When I set out to design the Apple II watch, I originally planned to create a faithful tiny replica of the classic machine in a wrist-sized form factor. While researching the design I began to ask if I really just wanted to make a miniature, or something altogether new? I settled on the latter. The design would be a working* device, heavily inspired by the form factor of the full size computer, but it would also be an imaginative exploration of a wearable tech world that began long before we had the technology to do so in a meaningful way.”
The UI is mainly for fun, as the creator states, but it does show the time and date — at a blistering 72MHz. It’s certainly a fun project, and a short video for the wearable is available below. It’s also worth heading down into the comments, where one Steve Woz even praises the device.
What do you think of the Apple II Watch?