Norway road trip where cool design meets dramatic scenery

The first pilot project by the then young – and today highly respected – firm of Jensen & Skodvin Architects (JSA) was completed in western Norway in 1997.

Vertigo-inducing viewing platforms, island-hopping bridges, and some of the funkiest toilet facilities in the northern hemisphere: these are just a sample of the design flourishes that Norway’s National Tourist Routes programme (NTR) has introduced across the country over the past 15 years. Add to this the fact that the roads programme has been a great incubator for Norway’s young, vibrant architectural scene – which is respected for its daring and imagination across Europe – and for anyone heading north this summer, with design leanings or simply curious, a road trip beckons.

This is a far cry from the NTR’s beginnings. The first pilot project by the then young – and today highly respected – firm of Jensen & Skodvin Architects (JSA) was completed in western Norway in 1997. Aimed at drawing tourists into the stunning, if rarely visited, landscape through appealing roadside architecture, a full programme was subsequently launched, with 18 routes across Norway’s south, its coastal regions and the far north eventually chosen in 2004.

The pieces were primarily architectural, though in places, art installations and sculptures were also introduced, and by the end of the decade a host of impressive works were adding roadside lustre to the grandeur of Norway’s geography. A programme of rest stops, viewing platforms, bridges, walkways and restaurants was rolled out, with some jaw-dropping moments such as Tommie Wilhelmsen and Todd Saunders’ Aurland lookout.

Prior to the programme the roads were in remote and sparsely populated parts of the country and only lightly used, all but empty for mile upon mile. But with the gradual creation of NTR’s network, traffic has increased, with tourists arriving from all over the world.

The routes still number 18, but other buildings and features have been added, with a tranche of new projects opening over summer 2016. These include the by-now familiar fare of hiking paths, rest areas, toilets and viewing platforms mainly in the south of the country, such as at Skjervsfossen, Hardanger, designed by Fortunen Architects and opened in May.

More dramatically, Code Arkitektur has just completed an ambitious viewing point with the concrete ramp jutting over the vast Utsikten valley on the Gaularfjellet route. There are new artists’ works as well, such as Jan Freuchen’s columnar sculpture installation, which marks a walk at Vevang, on the Atlantic Road route.

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Of course, when I get to the destination — any destination — all of that second-guessing melts away and I have the time of my life.

“Where should I go?” is a question I frequently ask myself.

Wanting to escape the oppressive summer heat of Austin in August, I’ve spent the last few months staring at a map, unable answer that very question. I toyed with the idea of heading to Madagascar, Hawaii, Malta, Kenya, the Caribbean, the Maldives, Dubai, or Sri Lanka.

And, because I couldn’t choose and was so afraid to commit, it wasn’t until this week I finally decided — just weeks before I wanted to go. (More on that later.)Why?

I was suffering from what psychologists call “choice overload.”

Whether we have two weeks, two months, or two years, deciding where to go is the hardest part about travel. Once you have the time, picking the destination becomes a task of whittling down a long list of “must-see” destinations.

When people are faced with too many options, they are sometimes so paralyzed by the fear of making the wrong choice that they don’t make any choice.

Think of standing in the cereal aisle. We have all these options right in front of us, but we keep going back to our old favorite, Fruity Pebbles. (Or, Cinnamon Toast Crunch if we’re feeling crazy!)

We may want to try something new, but we can’t figure out what we want the most — there are just too many options! How do we choose? How do we know we won’t make the wrong choice? So, paralyzed with indecision, we go back to what we know. And, if we don’t have a favorite, often we just choose what is popular and familiar to our mind (Cheerios).

In psychology, this is called “analysis paralysis.” Contemplating our options becomes such a taxing mental burden that we don’t make a decision. Our minds want shortcuts. It’s how we process all the information thrown at us each day. It’s too difficult to think about everysimple decision all the time. Going with what you know and is familiar is how we shortcut our analysis paralysis. (This is all explained in the 2004 book The Paradox of Choice, which I highly recommend reading!)

Think of the world as the proverbial cereal aisle. We’re looking forward to picking a cereal (a destination), but suddenly realize we have too many options. Faced with so many choices and without a strong opinion (e.g., I really want to go to Thailand this fall!), we stare blankly, wondering if picking a destination is the right choice, so we end up (a) fretting about it for months like I did, missing flight deals and precious planning time or (b) end up with what is big, popular, and familiar (let’s visit Paris for the tenth time!).

I often get so paralyzed by choice that I don’t book a trip until the last minute, and even then, I often suffer from buyer’s remorse. Did I really want to book that flight to Dubai? Or should I have gone to Madagascar instead? If I do this trip, will I have time to visit Peru later this year, or should I just go to Peru now?

Last week, after months of fretting, I finally bit the bullet and booked tickets to Dubai, the Maldives, and Sri Lanka. I’m beyond thrilled (especially for Sri Lanka) but in the back of my mind I still find myself thinking, “Is 15 days really enough to enjoy Sri Lanka? Maybe I should go somewhere else until I can spend more time there!”

Of course, when I get to the destination — any destination — all of that second-guessing melts away and I have the time of my life.

If you’re a long-term traveler, you can go anywhere for as long as you want. But when you only have a limited amount of time — because you’re like me and slowing down, or because you just have a few weeks off from work and need to make the most of them — you have to be more selective.

So how do you narrow down your destinations, get on with your trip planning, and not suffer the anxiety that comes with choice overload?

This experience has given me a new philosophy on trip planning. I’ve changed how I decide on destinations:

First, embrace the variety. You’re always going to be overwhelmed by choice. There will always be more destinations to visit than you have time to see. The list of places to visit will only get longer the more you travel, not shorter. Don’t fight it. Recognize it, but don’t let it control you.

Second, start with list of ten places you want to go right now. Come up with the destinations that are at the top of your mind. This year, now that I am taking fewer trips, I want my trips to be to places I’ve never been and are as culturally different as possible, so I came up with the list at the top of this blog (yes, I know not all of the places are culturally different from each other!).

Third, figure out when you can go and how long you have. For me, since I was only going in August, I knew I had exactly a month (since I have to be stateside for weddings in September and October).

Fourth, think of the time of year. Which country has the weather you want to enjoy the most? I’m trying to escape the heat of inland Austin, so I wanted beaches. I crossed Hawaii and the Caribbean off the list, but I still wanted something beachy and adventurous. The Maldives and Sri Lanka may be hot, but they have beaches!

Fifth, make the length of your travels proportional to the size of the country. I didn’t want to attempt to visit large countries like India, Brazil, or China when I have just a few weeks. I wanted to see smaller destinations that I could explore more in depth during a shorter period of time. By this point I knew I was down to using Dubai as a hub and finding destinations from there.

Finally, look up flights. From Dubai, it was $1,700 USD to Madagascar but $400 to the Maldives, and $0 to get to and from Sri Lanka, thanks to airline miles. I didn’t have enough points to fly on the African carriers I wanted (I burned 100K United points last month on other flights — whoops!) so Madagascar and Kenya were out of the question. That left the Maldives and Sri Lanka as the best places to visit from Dubai.

And, with that, where I’m going was settled.

Once I stopped letting too much choice keep me from making a decision and after logically going through my checklist, I stopped hemming and hawing about where I wanted to go, found my destinations, booked my trip, and got on with getting excited about visiting new places.

Overcoming choice overload in travel is about first realizing that there will always be more places to visit than you have time, then figuring out what destinations fit what you can do right now. Once you start with your list of destinations, getting down to the perfect one becomes a process of elimination.

I know many of you suffer from the same problem I do (your emails to me are proof), and I hope you use this advice to overcome choice overload.

Because there will always be too many destinations to choose from and too little time to see them in.

Your future luggage has a mind of its own

There’s a whole other world to your gear than meets the eye. Generally, sacks have begun to think for themselves.

There’s a whole other world to your gear than meets the eye. Generally, sacks have begun to think for themselves.

They can measure themselves, track themselves, bolt and open at the touch of a cell phone and even charge your gadgets and twofold as a Wi-Fi hotspot.

In any case, is the world prepared for them? A few specialists aren’t so certain.

“Everybody is discussing shrewd gear, however at this moment, I believe what’s in the commercial center is more tricks,” says Ramesh Tainwala, CEO of baggage brand Samsonite.

“I wouldn’t generally say we’ve achieved a level of innovation where you have something that conveys quality to the buyer in a way that is protected,” he includes.

It’s a business sector Samsonite arrangements to enter soon.

Tainwala says to expect another, better model of keen gear by ahead of schedule one year from now.

The lighter the better

Another developing pattern in the gear business sector is weight. Lighter sacks mean you can pack more before achieving as far as possible.

“The lightest [bag on the market] is under two kilos (4.5 pounds). Our R&D group is chipping away at a test: Can you make a lodge estimated baggage which is under 1.5 kilos (three pounds)?” asks Tainwala.

The wheels on the sack

Wheels may simply appear like round things that draw a bag forward, yet the unassuming wheel has gotten an intricate makeover as of late.

“It’s likely a standout amongst the most entangled parts that goes into (the outline),” says Tainwala.

“The wheel ought to have the capacity to take the stun when you truly drop the gear on the wheel, which is not quite the same as an auto. No one would take an auto and drop an auto,” he includes.

Samsonite wheels, he notes, have no less than 50 to 60 unique parts which permit them to acclimate to the scope of temperatures and climate conditions.

“Dislike the wheel of a toy, you know.”

Tripstir helps you find friends while you’re traveling

Tripstir is another application that helps you impart venture arranges and tips to your companions.

Tripstir is another application that helps you impart venture arranges and tips to your companions.

Consider it an approach to keep away from those maddening minutes when you return from an excursion and you understand that one of your companions was in the same spot in the meantime — however, you’re just discovering when it’s past the point of no return.

Fundamentally, you utilize Tripstir by entering data about forthcoming treks.

Once you have trips in the framework, you can see different clients who live in a given city and the ones who will be going by in the meantime.

You can likewise see individuals who’ve been to that city previously, on the grounds that hey, that may even now be a decent wellspring of proposals.

The cleanest village in Asia

What’s more, for India, that is truly saying something.

In a nation known for its absence of sanitation – an issue Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has framed a national project to address – this modest town is a model of cleanliness.

In eastern India’s Mawlynnong town, cleaning up is a custom that everybody – from little babies to toothless grannies – considers important. This little, 600-odd individual town in the Meghalaya locale is famous as the cleanest town in India.

What’s more, for India, that is truly saying something. Disposed of jugs and folded sustenance wrappers blended with cow waste – and more awful – are basically part of the geology in the vast majority of the nation. To such an extent that PM Shri Narendra Modi propelled the yearning “Clean India Mission” (Swachh Bharat Abhiyan) in October 2014 with an objective of definitely sprucing up the nation’s real urban communities by Mahatma Gandhi’s 150 birthday in 2019.

Mawlynnong is now path on top of things, however.

It was pronounced the cleanest town in Asia in 2003 and the cleanest in India in 2005 by Discover India magazine. All the more as of late, Modi recognized Mawlynnong as the cleanest town in Meghalaya and a model for whatever is left of the district in a 2015 radio location. In May 2016 he highlighted it as “Asia’s cleanest town” in a festival of the administration’s victories (counting the Clean India program).

This distinguishing strength stuck, and the town has turned into a provincial legend and wellspring of pride. Stroll in and all the run of the mill garbage is baffling, inexplicably truant.

So how would you get a group to end up a model of cleanliness and sanitation in a nation where this has for quite some time been an issue? The answer, it appears, is to begin them youthfully.

All the normal junk is strange, supernaturally missing.

Eleven-year-old Deity Backorder begins her day around 6:30 am. Her errand, imparted to all the town children, is the beautification of the town. Teasel floor brushes close by, the kids storm the boulevards, clearing up dead leaves and rubbish before school.

The youngsters are additionally in charge of exhausting the junk receptacles – which are shockingly beautiful, hand-woven, cone-formed create scattered all through town – and isolating natural waste from burnable garbage. Leaves and other biodegradable waste are covered (and in the long run utilized as compost); everything else is driven a long way from the town and blazed. There are additionally devoted town nursery workers who keep up uproars of open plants and blossoms that line the pathways, making a stroll here fantastically charming.

While we talked, she grinned at her six-year-old little girl, Sanjana, who was swinging merrily on a swing made of extra plastic packs. The subject of what to do with plastic waste is still a major one, as blazing it is poisonous. Regularly the materials are reused, with compartments repurposed as grower and sacks transformed into swings.

“My children know it’s distinctive here,” Kharrymba said.

How to create a stunning Travel Journal

If you want to have something stunning for your journal, then you need to start with a stunning layout.

Blogging your travel experiences to relate the WOW factor

So, you have just visited an amazing place and you want to share your experience with the world. But you do not want to write a review, as there are a ton of sites that people can visit to find the best hotels, restaurants, and events. No, you want to capture the experience in a journal form showcasing what made your experience unique. Here are a few ways in which you can create a stunning travel journal.

Get a theme for your blogger or WordPress site.

If you want to have something stunning for your journal, then you need to start with a stunning layout. Personally, for a journal I would choose something that looks like paper. Vintage or notebook paper is up to you, but you should try to get away from the white background with plain black font. Give the site a bit of depth. Those that have the time may want to consider a 3D background of their location. Just ensure that whatever background image you choose does not take away from the content that you are adding. Remember, it is your journal and your experience that you want to get across.

Add 3D models of icons to the site

Coupled with the paper, you can add a 3d model to highlight the spot that you are visiting. Think of the 3d Model as a modern day snow globe of the destination. If you are visiting Paris consider a model of the Eiffel tower, if in Rome you could use the Colosseum, and if you are in Australia you could even use a 3D kangaroo or kola bear. The point of the model is to highlight the section in a unique way while at the same time giving depth to the page. Where there are a ton of journals which have a header and then an assortment of personal pictures, there are few travel journals which are designed with a journal feel to them.


Most web templates come with the ability to have multiple pages. Use this to your advantage to categorize your journal. It makes it far less confusing if your destinations can be easily found and read upon. Consider having a page for each continent that you explore. If you are traveling in one country then make the pages about various location destinations such as museums, night life, the people, and the unsung heroes of that destination. Make it personal. If your journal is mimicking a review site then you will lose that personal touch which readers can identify with.

Use relevant pictures

One of the downfalls of journal blogs, especially travel journal blogs is that the page is filled with selfies. And where there is nothing wrong with having a picture or two of yourself enjoying the location, most viewers will not know or care who you are at first. They want to see the location. They want to experience what you have personally experienced. You are bringing the vacation or holiday to the reader and so your pictures should relate this.

Do not use stock images on your travel blog. This is a big negative. If I want to see stock images of a location I will just do a Google or Bing search. Again, you want to be unique and relate the emotion and the experience to the reader. Take your own pictures. They do not have to be professional grade (though they do need to be clear), just personal.

Use first person dialog

When you type up your experience, ensure that you use I and me in the dialog. This makes it personal. Third person should be avoided as it is too formal. Write as you speak, but also ensure that your grammar is spot on.

Avoid going overboard with banners and social media buttons

Yes, you want to give your audience the ability to share your content. However, if your travel journal has too many banners and buttons, the authenticity of the site will suffer. Viewers will see your site as being driven not by the travel experience, but by the intention to make a few dollars from the click ads. Keep the sharing of content subtle. Add Pinterest/Instagram sharing capabilities to your images, allow for snippets to be shared, and then have your follower and social media buttons.

Add a signature font to the end of each entry

It may not seem like a big deal, but there is something intimate and warming about a signature on a journal entry. When you consider that your stunning travel journal mimics paper, that you have the pictures and the personal touch, and that the reader is there for the unique experience, adding a font such as bro Mello or Ænigma Scrawl 4 BRK can be just the closer that you need.

So what are you waiting for? Now that you have the tips to create a stunning travel journal all that remains is for you to get to your next destination and start.

The best 10 Android applications for travel

If you have an Android phone and the need for the journey button becomes increasingly higher, it would be bad to do with profit. Here are the 10 best applications (free) from Android Market, perfect for downloading to your phone before departure.

If you have an Android phone and the need for the journey button becomes increasingly higher, it would be bad to do with profit. Here are the 10 best applications (free) from Android Market, perfect for downloading to your phone before departure.

1. Tripit

The 10 best Android applications for travel tripit for those who use online services for organizing the itinerary for those who want permanent information about flights, hotels, and even local weather addresses.

2. Google Maps

An application that meets smartphones, including the iPhone, and has become indispensable. Set it to get current location, then use it to get to the address where you must go. If you Google Maps almost do not need a GPS.

3. GetYourGuide

GetYourGuide connects people with more than 23,100 things to do all over the world so they discover more and research less. On, travelers can find everything from historic walking tours to skip-the- line Eiffel tower passes, tickets to sporting events and shows, and even entries to museums and attractions.

4. GeoQuiz

Train or plane, if the road gets boring, it will GeoQuiz shorter hours. E-quiz app a lot to learn from you, including the following countries and places to visit.

5. Wikitude

It gives you the opportunity to see the world through your phone’s camera. Wikitude is a travel guide of  “augmented reality” using Wikipedia and other content generated by users through the camera, giving you information about the environment you’re in.

6. Hotels Near Me

Use GPS in your Android phone to see A database that includes over 60,000 hotels worldwide. Then they list them in the vicinity of where you are. Each hotel has a rating, address, telephone and reviews made by tourists who have visited there.

7. Layar Reality Browser

The 10 best Android applications for similar Wikitude travel layer, in fact, another kind augmented reality application that displays information about the images you take on your camera. You can add a various image, and information from Twitter, Wikipedia, Yelp, etc.

8. Where

Using your location, Where gives you real-time information about gas stations, weather predictions, movies running nearby, recommended restaurants, traffic conditions, and local news. Also, through the application, you have access to Yellow Pages and Yelp. It’s like a small travel guide bearer. Absolutely essential.

9. Star translate

Do not speak French? No problem. Star help translate. This app works both as a translator and a dictionary, based on Google Translate. I mean you could do in over 50 languages. Star translate is including an icon which once clicked will read the text. Very cool.

10. Waze

Information from other participants in traffic accidents on the road route or other events. If you’re driving, help you avoid heavy traffic areas or those in which they work.

Tim Cook is traveling: Yesterday in Beijing today in Delhi

Tim Cook is traveling: Once again, he visited Beijing, where he met the President of the new Apple Partners and uber-rivals Didi Chuxing. Following the Apple CEO travels to India to meet there again the Prime Minister.

Tim Cook is traveling: Once again, he visited Beijing, where he met the President of the new Apple Partners and uber-rivals Didi Chuxing

Following the Apple CEO travels to India to meet there again the Prime Minister.

On Monday Cook arrived in Beijing to travel by taxi the uber-rivals Didi Chuxing to an Apple Store. The taxi he shared with the Didi-Chuxing President Jean Lui, who organized a meeting with app developers for him at a local Apple Store. Didi Chuxing is more recently an Apple partner – the American company invested a princely sum in the amount of a billion dollars in the service.

Officially Apple will use the investment to “better understand the Chinese market segment” this. Some observers see a connection to the alleged Apple electric car project: Didi Chuxing will be long-term as well as Uber interest in using autonomous driving cars. Uber is already collaborating with Apple’s largest competitor, Google.

With or without electric car plans: The Chinese market is very important for Apple, which also makes numerous trips Cooks show in the country. Recently there have been concerns that the Chinese government Apple is no longer so well disposed of, so the investor Carl Icahn even all his Apple shares sold. Whether Apple in China also met government representatives, is not known.

Following his visit to the Middle Kingdom Cook travels but immediately passed into the second major Asian growth market to meet the highest representatives of the government there: On Tuesday, the Apple CEO is quoted by Reuters for the second time with Indian Prime Minister Narendra modes together to talk about Apple’s business in the country. Already last year hit Cook in the US on modes, this year traveling the Apple CEO, at least for the first time officially in his role as CEO to India.

Cook has repeatedly stressed in the recent past that he sees India as the next important growth market for Apple. Apple should now have received the green light from the GOI to the opening of Apple stores in the country – according to a recent report of the site Factor Daily it is 2017 three Apple stores by the end give in Delhi, Bangalore, and Mumbai.

Even in China  Apple’s began strong growth only really after the opening of the first Apple Stores; now China is the United States the company’s second largest market.

5 Useful Gadgets and Apps Every Travel Enthusiast Needs

There’s nothing as amazing as a backpacking trip and there’s practically nothing as stressful as packing for one. But, as they say, “bring twice as much money as you think you will need and half as much stuff”.

There’s nothing as amazing as a backpacking trip and there’s practically nothing as stressful as packing for one.

But, as they say, “bring twice as much money as you think you will need and half as much stuff”.

Though we may agree with the latter part, but carrying so much cash in pocket? Na! Living in the twenty-first century, we are surrounded by excellent gadgets and apps that allow us to stay up on our feet all the time. The smartest way to travel today is to stay handy with top travel gadgets and app in the bag and enjoy your trip to your heart’s content.

Here are five useful gadgets every travel enthusiast must carry.

External Battery Charger

When on the go, the most important thing nowadays is to keep the battery of your smartphones, tablets and laptops fully charged. But, continuous use would sooner or later drain their battery, and there may even come times when you won’t be able to find a plug anywhere around you to charge your gadget(s) again. For such times, it is vital to carry an external battery charger. There is a wide range of high capacity portable external battery chargers available in the market which offer enough emergency back-up to charge your gadgets, at least, two times, allowing you to enjoy your trip without worry.

Luggage Tracker

Losing or misplacing luggage is practically the most annoying thing that could ever happen to you while you’re away from home on a trip. Instead of leaving it to the authorities to find your misplaced luggage, it is best to have a luggage tracker in a pocket. They are small, convenient and very easy to use. You can get all the information you want right on your smartphone with just a few clicks.

Waterproof Case

While we are talking about smartphones and travel gadgets, it is very important to protect them from getting damaged, especially your smartphones. There are a myriad variety of protective cases available in the market, but it is best to opt for a waterproof one. It not only restricts water from seeping into your smartphone but allows you to carry it underwater and click some brilliant photos of the marine life.

Selfie Stick

Okey! Let’s face it. Each one of us is fond of clicking pictures. Not just capturing the beauty of the majestic place we are visiting, but also having, at least, several great pictures of our own posing in front of or with the destination’s highlights in the backdrop. This evidently can be a bit of a problem especially when you’re travelling solo. A selfie stick can be your savior. You can easily click some awesome selfies using the selfie stick and preserve them as souvenirs.

E-Book Reader

Though most of us, till date, prefer actual books over digital ones, but when it comes to packing less, e-books are a good alternative. So, if you are an avid reader or looking for interesting ways to pass the time while travelling, you should definitely consider getting an e-book reader. Kindle, is one such gadget you can load with dozens of books and doesn’t really ask for much space in your backpack. Besides, it is wonderful opportunity to catch up with your reading.

Travelling is not just about carrying the right set of gadgets, it’s about having the right digital savvy travel tools to make your trip more convenient, fun-filled and memorable.

Here are five apps you must have installed on your smartphone:-


GetYourGuide is an amazing app that allows you to book your tours and activities around the world in a matter of few seconds. Whether you are in the mood for a Dubai desert safari or planning a romantic Paris helicopter tour with your loved one, you can make any and every booking through this fantastic app, in advance or on the go. Either way, you can conveniently skip the long queues and make payments for everything through the app. The app is available both on Android and iOS, so no matter which smartphone you are carrying, you can conveniently download the app and find everything you are looking for on your trip.


Airbnb is a unique app that allows you to look for any and every kind of accommodation option available in the city you are visiting – be it a regular hotel room, a villa, a castle, or even a van as a matter of fact. The app tramples the competition when it comes to accommodation listings. You can filter down the search as per your needs and budget and even make online bookings avoiding last minute rushes.


While you are planning your trip and making bookings, your mailbox is flooded with tons of emails related to flights, car rentals, and accommodations, which pile up and eventually some important ones may get lost in the bulk. TripIt helps gather all these emails and combines them into a single, easy-to-read thread. The app scans your emails for dates of your travel and adds them automatically to your calendar. It further sorts them in a systematic order and combines maps to help you navigate easily.

XE Currency

This app is especially very useful when you are travelling overseas. XE Currency conveys currency conversion rates allowing you to use your money judicially. Available in both Android and iOS versions, it supports almost every nation currency in the world. It also allows you to track up to ten currencies simultaneously. The best thing about the app is that it constantly revises the rates and keeps the users updated even when you are using the app offline.

Google Translate

Google Translate is one of the best apps you must have on your smartphones when travelling to a city / country whose language is by far very different from yours. The app is most useful on a practical level as it helps quickly translate day-to-day words you may come across on your travel in your local language. All you need to do is hold your phone’s camera up to the text – such as a menu or a sign board, and Google will instantly translate it into your language for you to conveniently understand.

A thinner Apple Watch 2 could be out by June

According to White’s sources, the Apple Watch 2 is going to launch this summer at WWDC rather than in September with the iPhone.

It’s been a while since we heard a juicy Apple Watch 2 rumour, so hats off to Wall Street analyst Brian White who’s been touring the electronics factories of Asia and has picked up more than one bit of gossip on his travels.

According to White’s sources, the Apple Watch 2 is going to launch this summer at WWDC rather than in September with the iPhone.

We don’t yet have a fixed date for this year’s Worldwide Developers Conference but it’s usually at the start of June.

What’s more, the new wearable timepiece is going to have a casing that’s 20-40 percent thinner than the current model, White says. If bulk was the only thing putting you off the first generation device then it sounds like you’re in luck.

We’ll take two

We’re expecting the Apple Watch 2 to be able to do more without a tethered iPhone – including, perhaps, make video calls – although the design isn’t expected to change significantly, this time, around.

Not that most current Apple Watch owners care: a recent marketing survey of 2,578 punters found that 60 percent of people with the first gen device would upgrade to version 2.0 without even seeing it. That’s brand loyalty for you.

The survey also found that the biggest barrier to purchase is the Apple Watch’s price, which may explain why the entry cost of the wearable was lowered last month. Whether or not the new version will stick to the current pricing structure remains to be seen.