Rapper will.i.am dismisses Apple Watch as “weird” despite attending last year’s launch


will.i.am seen with Angela Ahrendts at last year’s Apple Watch event

Musician and former Beats shareholder will.i.am said that seeing someone in a gym with an iPhone 6 strapped to their arm while wearing an Apple Watch made him think “that s*** is weird,” reports the NY Post.

The comment – made at the Cannes Lions festival where Apple won an award for its Shot on iPhone campaign – was probably not what Apple had in mind when the company invited him to the launch of the Watch last year.

You don’t have to look too far to see why he would want to diss the Watch, however: he launched his own smartwatch just one month after Apple unveiled its Watch. While he may be proud of the built-in 3G connection that means the Puls doesn’t need a connection to a smartphone, consumers don’t appear to share his enthusiasm. As Business Insider noted, UK partner O2 told them that “no units had been sold” and the device was pulled, while U.S. partner AT&T said the “trial program” for the Puls had ended.

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  1. GadgetBen - 8 years ago

    Says the man who wears a dress

  2. But it is weird. A phone AND a watch strapped to an arm is definitively weird, unwieldily and just plain stupid. It doesn’t mean it won’t be welcomed by the masses and do well in the market. These folks may want to put their phones in a pocket or pouch or leave it on top of the equipment or a shelf. Eventually the weirdness will go away and folks won’t need a phone at all.

    • jimr450 - 8 years ago

      It’s a weird USE of the products, not that the products are weird on their own. What I mean is, he’s criticising how someone is using the products, and this is being construed as a knock on the product itself. WHY is the person at the gym wearing both devices?? They don’t need the GPS of the iPhone inside the gym, and the Watch will track their workout without the iPhone as well as play 2GB worth of music playlists. So perhaps that individual had not invested in wireless headphones/earbuds yet, but that’s not the products fault. In the gym, you no longer need your iPhone if you have wireless earbuds and an Apple Watch, which makes it awesome and completely NOT WEIRD. It’s weird to have a phablet strapped to your arm!

  3. Chindavon (@Chindavon) - 8 years ago

    The Puls was deemed worst than the worst android wear product. He’s trying way too hard.

    • whatyoutalkingboutwillis - 8 years ago

      It doesn’t run android wear. Instead I think it uses a modified version of Android.

      • airmanchairman - 8 years ago

        Thanks for that piece of info. +1 for your handle :-)

      • dailycardoodle - 8 years ago

        he didn’t say it ran Android Wear.

  4. sunsetbernie - 8 years ago

    Weird?! That’s the pot calling the kettle black

  5. patthecarnut - 8 years ago

    Well, he should know! He is a famous, highly regarded designer, right?


    Oh wait, never mind…

    His name should be douche.a.bag

    • whatyoutalkingboutwillis - 8 years ago

      He didn’t criticise the design, he criticised the functionality.

      • jimr450 - 8 years ago

        And that was based off of someone not using the functionality properly. You don’t need your iPhone along with the Watch in a gym. All you need are wireless headphones if you want your music. You definitely do not need GPS inside a gym so again, he may have been calling that person’s use of the devices weird, (which they are) or improperly dissing the devices based on someone using them in a weird and ineffective manner.

      • patthecarnut - 8 years ago

        And your point is? My point is he has no business critiquing anything when he comes up with crap he does. I hate people in the music business who think they are something more.

  6. Robert Nixon - 8 years ago

    I honestly thought the Puls was a joke when I first saw it, and was flabbergasted when I found out that it wasn’t.

  7. orthorim - 8 years ago

    Never heard of the “Puls”. Checked the website and the first sentence contains the word Fashionology.

    I quickly closed the website to prevent further brain damage.


Avatar for Ben Lovejoy Ben Lovejoy

Ben Lovejoy is a British technology writer and EU Editor for 9to5Mac. He’s known for his op-eds and diary pieces, exploring his experience of Apple products over time, for a more rounded review. He also writes fiction, with two technothriller novels, a couple of SF shorts and a rom-com!

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