First Generation Smartwatches and Managing Expectations

​Unless you’ve had your head in the ground, you’ve heard about wearable technology and, in particular, smartwatches. Though this technology is not yet mainstream, I think it’s safe to say that with the arrival of the Apple Watch, smartwatches are here to stay. But from the early adopters of these devices, there has been some very critical feedback. 

Take, for example, these comments on the Apple Watch:

As a timepiece – Joshua Topolsky of Bloomberg Business writes, “I’ve found the experience somewhat inferior to a conventional wristwatch….”

As a communication toolVenture Beats’ Mark Sullivan writes, “It’s not an invaluable communications device — not by a long shot.”

As a music playerThe Verge’s Nilay Patel criticizes its cabilities, saying, “That nano did a great job of displaying a lot of music information on a tiny screen, and the Apple Watch does not."

As a fitness trackerMacworld contributor Kirk McElhearn questions ​the quality of the watch’s fitness tracker, saying, “Either the Apple Watch is severely flawed in its fitness tracking capabilities, or I received a dud…”

What we find in the reviews of this first generation device are critiques of the watch from the viewpoint of different expectations. The challenge with a product such as the Apple Watch is that each customer will have a different expectation of the product. One person will buy it for its convenience as a communication device, while someone else may buy it for its fitness training benefits. The test for Apple is: Will it be able to offer the services its customers’ want, when they want it?

Our customers who care about CX face a similar challenge. In the ever-competitive arena of telecommunications, for example, Virgin Media sought to maintain industry-leading service to ensure customer loyalty. But with each customer expecting something different from their experience, Virgin Media found themselves in a difficult position. 

The key to Virgin Media’s CX achievements today are the initiatives the organization took to constantly know the customer needs and wants, and to understand how they are answering those needs. As Paul Atkin’s from Virgin explains, taking into account customer feedback and focusing employees on customer needs has “changed our culture, to bring the customer experience to the fore.” 

Putting the customer at the heart of the business, and constantly focusing effort according to customer needs, allows organizations like Virgin Media to adapt according to each customer’s expectations. 

This will be the key for Apple too, with the second generation Apple Watch: understanding the different expectations of different customers, and adapting their product to meet those varying expectations. 

Read more about Virgin Media’s story here; or find out how your organization can create perfect experiences for your customers by clicking here.
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