On January 13, 1946, Chester Gould gave Dick Tracy a two-way wrist radio and adolescent boys across the country became transfixed with the idea of miniature portable communication devices. In 1964, Gould upgraded Tracy’s radio to a two-way wrist TV, and our collective pubescent unconscious immediately began conjuring all sorts of filthy possibilities that continue to haunt our dreams to this day.
Early efforts to duplicate Tracy’s most iconic gadget were, how to put this… less than sophisticated.
Even employing Groucho Marx as a spokesmodel failed to satisfy our cravings for wrist-worn awesomeness.
Now fast forward to last Thursday for thedebut of Sony’s new ‘SmartWatch’, which is designed to work in tandem with your Android phone to provide you with more — ahem —timely access to the various and vital tweets, emails, status updates, phone calls, etc. that would otherwise force you to paw your phone out of your too-tight thrift store jeans every time your pocket buzzed.
Facing competition from Kickstarter darlingsPebble and inPulse and having just revised its losses for the previous financial year to $6.4 billion (yeah, that’s right — “billion”), Sony, the former consumer electronics giant, is undoubtedly praying for the SmartWatch to become as iconic as Tracy’s own well-known band of techno-bling — or, better yet, anything made by Apple in the last ten years.
However, whether or not the SmartWatch is a hit on its own merits, Sony certainly could have taken a bite out of Apple’s recipe book when it comes to advertising. As of today, there is absolutely no information about the SmartWatch on Sony’s homepage, forcing potential customers to glean second-hand information from sketchy-ass blogs.
Moreover, even typing “SmartWatch” into the main search bar yields zilch at the moment. It’s only when you click on the Sony Store and then search for “SmartWatch” that the product appears. Can you imagine visiting Apple.com at any given moment and not seeing a drool-worthy photo of the latest iPad or iPhone right on the front page?
On the plus side, Pottermore — the Harry Potter uber-site created and overseen by Just Kidding Rowling herself — opened last weekend, and since it’s apparently being run in partnership with top Sony brass like CEO Charlie Redmayne, CTO Julian Thomas, and COO Tom Turcan, maybe the boy wizard has enough tricks up his over-sized sleeves to turn the floundering federation’s fortunes around again. Don’t bet your last raven’s claw on it though. Vanquishing He-Who-Shall-Not-Be-Named was probably a hell of a lot easier than yanking Sony out of the scrap heap.