When the Apple Watch was first unveiled, it was as much a moment for fashion as it was for technology. That philosophy can still be seen today, with a range of quick change strap options allowing users to tailor the appearance of their device to match their personal style.
It's not perfect though. While matching the band to your look is one thing, the dial is arguably just as important. That's not as easy to switch around – you'll need to do a bit of menu diving on the watch to make that adjustment.
But you may not have to for much longer. According to a recent patent filed by Apple, future models could have the ability to change the dial colour based on the hue of something placed in front of the dial. A sensor housed under the display could pick up the colour and adjust to match.
That's quite a neat concept. You could, for example, flash a brightly coloured shirt or a pair of shoes that you'd like to pair your watch with, to get a perfect colour match. Of course, that's just the tip of the iceberg, too. In theory, you could nab the colour of just about anything to get a dial in that hue.
If the functionality does ever see the light of day, it will be interesting to see how it's received. While it definitely has the potential to be handy, it could also be seen as a bit of a gimmick. I'd wager that most users don't feel the need to change their watch face all too often, which might render it redundant.
That's also a big 'if'. As we know, big companies like Apple have a tendency to patent a lot of technology. They'll secure the rights to just about everything they work on. But that's no guarantee that it will ever hit the market.
I hope this one does, though. Sure, it has the potential to be seen as a bit of a gimmick, but I think it's exactly the sort of feature which an Apple Watch user would enjoy. Customisation – particularly when it comes to the dial – has been a big ask for many years, and this could be a novel way of allowing that, without giving up total control of the layout.
There's also talk of an Apple Watch X, which could be released later in 2024. That's expected to feature a fairly hefty redesign, acting almost like an anniversary model for the range. A feature like this could be a perfect addition there, offering something new and quirky for users celebrating the products' milestone.