Apple Watch to drive 'glance journalism'

April 20, 2015 10:56
Yahoo plans an app for the Apple Watch that will deliver updates on Hong Kong news to its wearers. Photo: AFP

With the Apple Watch expected to sell in the millions, "glance journalism" will become a new trend, AFP reported.

News organizations are turning their efforts to providing updates for the device's tiny screen.

Yahoo Inc. will have four apps for the Apple Watch, including a news digest updated hourly with "microsummaries" of major stories, as well as apps for fantasy sports, weather -- and one specifically for Hong Kong news.

The New York Times says its app for the Apple Watch will be "a new form of storytelling" and that "editors on three continents" will produce updates for it.

Readers will be able to "hand off" an article from the device to view on an iPhone or iPad.

CNN and National Public Radio also have apps for the Apple Watch, and others are expected to follow.

The new technology will mean more bite-size news being directed at consumers, media analysts say.

"We are about to enter the era of 'at a glance journalism'," Mario Garcia, a consultant with Garcia Media and faculty member at the Poynter Institute for Media Studies, said in a blog post.

"It is more difficult to pull an iPhone out of one's pocket or a purse in a crowded New York City subway than it would be to glance at one's watch," Garcia said.

"So, I predict that we will be doing a lot of glancing, as in reading seductive headlines and deciding if we read [the full story] or not."


Gilles Raymond, founder and chief executive of the News Republic application, was quoted as saying smartphone users now glance at their handsets more than 100 times a day, and with the smartwatch that could become 300 or 500 times.

"It will be very addictive," he said.

Alan Mutter, a former Chicago newspaper editor who is now a digital media consultant, was quoted as saying smartwatch users may not want to feel "pecked to death" by vibrating alerts and that news publishers must strike the right balance on these notifications.

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