Looking down a subway platform or at people in line for coffee, you'll see a trend unfold — people heads-down, looking at their smartphones. Whether they're seeking to provide themselves with a momentary distraction or to prevent awkward eye contact, smartphones have become a blinder to the world around us. But Mark Sullivan from VentureBeat has written a hopeful article about how the Apple Watch may help inspire a new era of devices that push technology into the background.

It's the heads-up movement of devices that consumers are looking for. Apple's Jony Ive believes it's why Google Glass flopped — it was too intrusive. As for the Apple Watch, he told The New Yorker's Ian Parker:

“This isn’t obnoxious. This isn’t building a barrier between you and me.”

Engaging the user with attention-seeking content has been the drive of mobile technology for some time now, but it's fading out of the game, according to Sullivan. Perhaps, what consumers need is a shake-up, something new to refresh their sense of wonder, and that new thing may be re-introducing mobile users to the world around them. Sullivan writes:

“Maybe we’ll start judging the value of mobile devices on how well they enable real-life experience, rather than how well they replace it.”

Only time will tell if Apple's plan to disrupt smartphone distraction will pan out with its Watch.

To read more on the next technology revolution, check out Sullivan's article on VentureBeat.

Photo Credit: Matthew G / Flickr