If you’re a tech geek, you’ve probably been following the Apple press conference this morning featuring news about the brand new Apple Watch like I have. If you’re not a tech geek, read on for the travel highlights.
While the watch brings great functionality in a number of arenas from health to home automation, I was specifically looking for how it could simplify the travel experience and Apple seems to have come through quite well.
There are three key spaces where the Apple Watch will come in handy for your next trip.
Apple’s ticketing app Passbook works with Apple Watch, which means you can now store your boarding pass on your wrist instead of keeping your phone in your hand during the boarding process. That’s one less thing to hold as you try to finagle your carry-on and briefcase/purse/whatever at the same time. Just scan your wrist and go. United, American, Southwest, Lufthansa, and many more airlines are compatible with Passbook, so this is a great new development.
Hotel Room Keys
Apple is making hotel room entry easier by integrating your key right into your watch. They’ve partnered with SPG to make this happen (hence the W Hotel in the background) and I wouldn’t be surprised if every major hotel chain joins them. You can already use the SPG app on your iPhone in some hotels to open your door, but now you don’t even have to take out your phone. Just another level of convenience that this watch will provide.
I’ve become pretty obsessed with using Uber to get to and from the airport. With the brand new Uber Pool ride-share feature that they just unveiled in LA, my rides cost $5 each (with a limited time discount). I love to track my Uber drivers’ progress via my phone and now I can do so via the Apple Watch — assuming I get one.
The Apple Watch isn’t a must-buy gadget, but I bet a ton of early adopters will pick one up. At $349 – $10,000, these newfangled devices won’t come cheap, but that added layer of convenience definitely looks attractive to me. For those interested, they’ll come to Apple Stores on April 10th for you to check out and pre-order. On April 24th, they’ll actually be for sale.
Will you be buying an Apple Watch to improve your travel life? Let me know your thoughts in the comments.