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Universities ban watches because of the Apple Watch

Oops, Apple did it again.

When the first iPhone appeared, besides being a revolutionary phone, music player and an internet device, it also changed the way people took exams.

Colleges had to start banning all phones from their exam halls because students started using the devices as cheat sheets.

Eight years later, another Apple product is facing the similar faith, pulling with it all other manufacturers to the bottom of the pit.

As BuzzFeed reports (opens in new tab), colleges started banning students wearing watches (yes, regular watches) from their exam halls because they couldn’t tell the regular watches apart from the smartwatches.

The University of London expressed fears last summer that Apple watches could be “a problem in the examination hall from 2015 and beyond” because it would be hard to tell standard watches apart from the tiny computers strapped on people’s wrists.

Smartwatches could be used to pull up notes or read messages, they fear.

Now, some two months before the product even hits the shelves, universities are actively banning all watches.

“Students are already asked to place mobile phones in a plastic wallet under their desk, so we adopted the same procedure for watches,” London’s City University told BuzzFeed.

The University won’t get fooled that easily though. In case someone actually needs a watch, they got them covered:

“We also increased the number of large wall clocks available in the examination venues, bought small desk clocks for any student who requests one as well as a small quantity of RNIB-approved desk clocks for use by any student who needs one.”

Sead Fadilpašić is a freelance tech writer and journalist with more than 17 years experience writing technology-focussed news, blogs, whitepapers, reviews, and ebooks. And his work has featured in online media outlets from all over the world, including Al Jazeera Balkans (where he was a Multimedia Journalist), Crypto News, TechRadar Pro, and IT Pro Portal, where he has written news and features for over five years. Sead's experience also includes writing for inbound marketing, where he creates technology-based content for clients from London to Singapore. Sead is a HubSpot-certified content creator.