The Apple Watch won’t be the first mobile timepiece released by Apple. The Newton Clock debuted in
1993, and included the following revolutionary features missing from even the most advanced timepeices of the day.
Day & Night
The Newton Clock came in two fashionable styles; one for day and one for night. The border of the clock would change automatically to its corresponding style depending on the hour. 6:00 A.M. – 6:00 P.M. gave you the daylight border. While 6:00 P.M. – 6:00 A.M. gave you the nighttime border. No matter the time of day the Newton Clock was only in style.
I only wish it could have been a little more sensitive to the seasons. Using the Newton’s built-in almanac maybe the nighttime border could be set according to season and geographic location, instead of a hard twelve hour transformation. Perhaps in a future software update?
By tapping the simulated Flicp Clock interface, a user could set a dedicated daily alarm. “Tap the upper half of a number to increase it; tap the lower half to decrease it. Tap a letter to change from am to pm and vice versa.”
Features included turning that alarm on or off. Only a single daily alarm could be set a time, and the daily alarm sound is a digital alarm and can’t be changed. “When the daily alarm goes off, the Clock appears and you hear the digital alarm sound. You hear the sound for approximately one minute, or until you tap X to close the Clock.”
Users who require multiple alarms could setup events with alarms in the Newton’s Dates application.
Almost as though it was an egg timer from the future, the Newton clock could count down a specified number of minutes ending with an alarm. “After the set number of minutes has elapsed, the timer sounds and a message appears. If you want the timer to go off again, tap Snooze and, in the list that appears, tap the number of minutes. Tap X to close the slip.”
How many minutes does it take to boil and egg again?
Set the time, month, and year, then tap X to close the slip.
Options include setting a twelve or twenty-four hour clock. The change would not be reflected in the clocks twelve hour face, but in the upper-left corner of the Notepad. User’s could also access the Clock by tapping the time and date in the upper-left corner of the Notepad instead of searching for it in the Extras drawer.
A sibling to the Newton Clock is the Time Zone application. User’s could use this application to tell the MessagePad which city they are located in. User’s could also set a second time zone for traveling, or get information on specific cities and countries.
At the top is your current time zone, based on the worksite information. To change this, tap the diamond. In the list that appears, choose the worksite you want as your current time zone. To choose another city, tap Other City. In the slip that appears, tap a city, then tap X to close the slip. A second time zone is listed near the bottom of the Time Zones slip. You can set this if you travel or want to see the time and date for a particular city. The distance from your current time zone is also listed.
A user can even add additional cities including their location, Greenwich Mean Time Offset, and preference towards Daylight Savings Time.
If a user deleted a city that already existed (one they did not add), they could only get this information back if they perofrm a hard reset. I never like Paris anyway…
Using the Time Zone application it is possible to show two clock faces at the same time.
The Newton Clock, a trendy portable timepiece made before its time. It may not seem like much now, but I can gaurentee you one thing. On four AAAs, or one NiCd re-chargeable battery pack, it gets much better battery life than any Apple Watch. Did I mention its available in green?
Don’t leave your MessagePad without batteries for more than one hour. The MessagePad maintains backup power using a super capacitor that can maintain a charge up to one hour. If you remove the batteries for a longer period, the super capacitor charge could become depleted, and you may need to reset your clock and calendar information on the MessagePad.