ChatGPT on Smartwatches? Yep, It’s a Thing (And It’s Useful!)

Artificial intelligence on your wrist

  • You can now use a large language model, ChatGPT-based chatbot on your Apple Watch. 
  • Smartwatch chatbots could be more useful than Siri in some situations. 
  • A new line of Citizen watches also uses AI.
Closeup on someone's wrist as they're using an Apple Watch.

Luke Chesser / Unsplash

Artificial intelligence (AI) is coming for your wrist, and experts say that could be a good thing. 

 A new app called Petey (formerly watchGPT) has launched for Apple Watch. The voice assistant lets you interact with a large language model (LLM) chatbot that produces human-like text right from your wrist. 

"AI chatbots can be helpful in smartwatches by providing quick and convenient access to information and services," tech investor Kevin Miller told Lifewire in an email interview. "With a chatbot on their smartwatch, users can quickly get answers to their questions or perform tasks, such as making a reservation or ordering food, without having to take out their phone or computer."

AI Smartwatch App

The new Petey app (formerly watchGPT) promises to finally make good on the potential of the Apple Watch to access information from around the internet. Many observers say that the built-in smart assistant Siri fails to be helpful in many situations. Reddit user The_Franchise_09, for example, didn't hold back recently in criticizing Siri. 

"There's so many issues, from basic voice recognition and understanding what I'm saying to it not being able to do even a third of what rival voice assistants can do," The_Franchise_09 wrote on the forum. "She does nothing particularly well. I find myself visibly frustrated with her screwing up basic core commands or not understanding basic sentences. She can't even execute core functions adequately. Today, I asked her to remind me to get a COVID booster Friday, and instead of putting a reminder down for that, she pulls up web results for COVID boosters. I had a Galaxy Note 9 for a while, and Google Assistant puts Siri to shame and it's the one thing I do miss from my brief flirtation with android."

AI chatbots can be helpful in smartwatches by providing quick and convenient access to information and services.

Petey isn't the only AI smartwatch app. Citizen recently announced its latest CZ Smart smartwatches that feature a built-in AI "self-care advisor." The new proprietary YouQ app was built with IBM Watson Studio and uses NASA technology to show the wearer when they're at their most alert or tired in order to "maximize [their] daily potential," the company said.

The Citizen watch uses data points captured with the watch, including Alert Scores, chronotype, sleep patterns, activity, heart rate monitoring, and CZ Smart YouQ to learn about the wearer's habits and increase personalization. The company claims the watch uses a dynamic recognition mode to help the wearer fight the effects of fatigue and boost alertness. 

AI for Your Wrist

The new Apple Watch app, Petey, promises to let you quickly get answers to your questions or generate longer messages without typing. You can also share the answers you get via text, email, or social media. The app can be set as a complication for easy access. 

Petey accesses ChatGPT, an artificial intelligence chatbot developed by OpenAI and launched in 2022. It is built on top of OpenAI's GPT-3 family of LLMs and can produce human-like speech. 

The GPT-3 software is so realistic that for short-form text, everyday users can no longer assume they will know whether they're talking to humans or bots online, John Licato,  a professor of Computer Science and engineering professor at the University of South Florida, said in an email interview. 

A child using a smartwatch.

Krongkaew / Getty Images

"Online discussion platforms like Reddit or Twitter are almost certainly already overrun by bots posing as humans," Licato added. "Articles are being written almost entirely (and in some cases, entirely) by algorithms. And already, computer programmers are starting to adopt tools that write part of their code for them."

In the future, AI apps for smartwatches could be ubiquitous, Miller predicted. "They can make great virtual personal assistants that help users manage their schedules, intelligent home controllers that allow users to flick on lights or adjust the room temperature from their wrists, or even healthcare monitors to track vital signs and provide personalized recommendations," he added. 

Students with AI on their smartwatches might get a leg up in classes. "Every single college-level class will be affected significantly in some way by this technology," Licato said. "And I don't think it's an exaggeration to say that every single field of study will have new tools affecting them—both positive (productivity) and negative (e.g., for cheating or producing misinformation). The accessibility and scalability are tremendous, and this is sort of a Pandora's box that OpenAI opened."

Was this page helpful?