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10 Things We Didn't See Onstage at Today's Apple Watch Event

Apple TV hardware? Beats-iTunes mash-up? "One more thing"? Nope.

Vjeran Pavic for Re/code

Within the past six months Apple has held not one, but two different press events to showcase its newest product, the Apple Watch. Today, the company trickled out more details about the wearable — namely, its 18-hour battery life and prices, which range from This Would Make a Nice Birthday Gift to I Might Have to Sell a Kidney — and trumpeted a svelte new MacBook, to boot.

But what about the things we didn’t see onstage today? I present to you a list.

1. New Apple TV Hardware. Oh, there was plenty of Apple TV talk. Twenty-five million units of the set-top box have been sold. Its price dropped from $99 to $69. And HBO’s streaming service (which can be accessed without a cable subscription) will be coming exclusively to Apple devices, like the Apple TV, this spring. But — what’s in the box, itself? It’s the same ol’ box; no hardware updates were announced today.

2. Anything Beats-Related. Apple employee (and Beats co-founder) Jimmy Iovine was in the house and so was Beats’ Ian Rogers. That said, it looks like Iovine was here mostly to show face, or to show off his white-banded Apple Watch; Beats wasn’t included in the onstage presentation.

3. Touchscreen MacBooks. The new MacBook — simply called MacBook, not Air or Pro — is thin and light, and has an Intel Core M processor, a USB-C port for faster charging and a trackpad that plays mind games on you. But while other PC makers have hopped aboard the touchscreen train with a variety of convertible laptop designs, Apple is keeping its Retina displays unresponsive to touch.

4. Third-Party App Makers. Sometimes Apple, at its big press events, will bring other men in button-downs onstage to demo some app that will change your life on iPad, or an app that takes full advantage of the A8 chip in the iPhone. Not so much this time. Key app makers were certainly in attendance at the event, and Apple’s Kevin Lynch showed a variety of different apps during his “day in the life of” Watch demo, but otherwise, third-party app makers weren’t invited onstage today.

5. Women (Except for One Stunning Supermodel). I know for a fact that there are plenty of brilliant women down at 1 Infinite Loop in Cupertino, but today’s sole lady appearance onstage was made by supermodel and maternal health advocate Christy Turlington Burns, who looked like she could easily keep up with Apple CEO Tim Cook during a workout despite her dangerously high heels. Turns out Turlington Burns recently wore the Apple Watch while running a half-marathon in Kilimanjaro. Vogue spreads, Self covers and the former face of Calvin Klein … clearly, the Apple Watch is for beautiful people.

6. No “We’re So Much Better Than [Other Company]” Slides. Apple has taken its fair share of jabs at other companies (like Microsoft) during press events, but today’s demo was free of any side-by-side comparisons with other wearable companies. This is likely for two reasons: The first being, it’s an entirely new category for Apple, so it doesn’t have any sales or adoption metrics to brag about yet. And two, the electronic wearables market is still pretty nascent, with Android Wear and Pebble Watch being the only real competitors, so Apple is trying to take over what is still an unproven market.

7. No iPad News. This comes as no surprise; new iPads were announced last October. If you’ve come here looking for iPad information, check out Walt Mossberg’s review of the iPad Air 2.

8. Any Real Reason Why Non-Watch-Wearers Would Want to Wear This Watch. Apple is making great appeals to the fashion crowd, the health buffs and the techies who crave app access and notifications all day long. But Apple still hasn’t made a hugely compelling case for people who don’t ever wear a watch, or who don’t care about the aforementioned features. Will things like Watch-to-Watch messaging and Apple Pay convince the masses? Hmmm ….

9. No U2. Or Any Other Band. Conspicuously absent from today’s press event, both in terms of physical appearances onstage and ghost-like digital appearances on your iPhone, was any sort of musical act. I am okay with both of these things; normally I have my head down anyway while attempting to liveblog and tweet and Instagram and Snapchat and now apparently Meerkat these events. I will say this: If Apple can somehow convince Taylor Swift to appear onstage at the next event and put her music on their streaming service, I’ll be impressed.

10. “One More Thing.” The late Steve Jobs was known for his “One more thing …” announcements at Apple events. And at the last Watch event, Cook invoked Jobs when he first showed off the smartwatch. Today, there was no “one more thing.” Cook simply smiled and waved in his navy-blue pullover sweater and left the stage — a modest and unshowy exit that has come to embody Cook’s own signature sendoff.

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