Apple’s iWatch concept is real – and here’s how it might work

“Apple is working on a smart watch. Any lingering doubts about that notion took a further hit yesterday when a patent filing for such a device surfaced, adding more fuel to an already frenzied fire of speculation,” John Paul Titlow writes for ReadWrite.

“According to the filing, Apple has conceived a watch-like device with a flexible, touchscreen display and the ability to connect to other devices (like your iPhone) via a wireless protocol, probably Bluetooth 4,” Titlow writes. “The patent filing describes a ‘wearable video device’ that functions just like the slap bracelets that were popular among kids in the early 1990s.”

Titlow writes, “The patent is just the latest evidence that Cupertino plans to move into wearable computing via our wrists, rather than starting with something more intrusive like glasses, as Google is doing.”

Read more in the full article here.

Related articles:
ABI Research: Apple ‘iWatch’ could prove to be revelation in wearable tech – February 21, 2013
Apple patent application reveals slap bracelet ‘iWatch’ with flexible touchscreen display – February 21, 2013
Apple ‘iWatch’ leaks: Preemption or desperation? – February 19, 2013
Patents may point the way towards Apple iWatch – February 19, 2013
Samsung trying to beat Apple to market with ‘iWatch’ rival? – February 15, 2013
What if an Apple iWatch replaced most of the iPhone’s functions? – February 13, 2013
Apple ‘iWatch’ beyond ‘experimentation phase,’ sources say – February 13, 2013
Features that would make Apple’s iWatch a killer product – February 12, 2013
7 reasons why Apple’s unannounced ‘iWatch’ won’t fly – February 12, 2013
Patent application reveals Apple secretly developing wearable computing platform – February 12, 2013
Morgan Stanley: Apple iWatch, iTV could generate additional $80 billion annually – February 12, 2013
With ‘iWatch,’ Apple could turn wearable devices into next big thing – February 12, 2013
Why Apple is working on ‘iWatch,’ not ‘iGlasses’ – February 11, 2013
WSJ: Apple testing ‘iWatch’ device – February 11, 2013
iWatch: Apple developing curved-glass smart watch, sources say – February 11, 2013
Tog: The iWatch will fill a gaping hole in the Apple ecosystem – February 7, 2013
Why Apple should hang-up on the iPhone, iWear is next – January 6, 2013
Analyst sees wearable computers from Apple as future replacement for iPhone – January 2, 2013
Apple and Intel secretly building Bluetooth smartwatch that connects to your iOS devices, say sources – December 27, 2012
Apple patent application details display-integrated cellular antennas – May 6, 2012
Apple patent app details next-gen microstrip cellular antenna for future MacBooks, iWatch and beyond – October 25, 2011


      1. Yes we will along with millions of Android users
        who will jettison their inferior Galaxy phones to take full advantage of Apple’s iOS6. Two more things, Enterprise is taking off and Automotive applications will soon be releasing.
        What will really make us smile though is MacFreek’s hate will not allow him to participate. Yes, he will keep his denial intact and be on the outside of this new renaissance!

  1. If Apple is smart (like they’re not), they’ll build biosensors into this thing so that one’s temperature, heart rate, and other essential info is immediately available. They’ll also build in NFC and compatibility with other tap-card systems (like Compass and whatever it is that BART uses). Kinda reminds me of a gadget that I read in an SF novel back in the ’70s – they just called it their “ticket.”

    iTicket. That’s a good name for it.

    1. I don’t understand the obsession with NFC. Here in the UK, the London Underground have said it can’t be used because it’s so much slower than the current Oyster card and would cause pile ups at the ticket gates. As for mobile payment, it’s simply not needed.

  2. Any lingering doubts were dismissed by an Apple patent filing? Because every one of those filings results in an Apple product.

    Even funnier was Jacqui Cheng from Ars Technica’s piece on the iWatch resembling a “slap bracelet” – again based on the filing.

    Thank god the tech press continues to find things with “Apple” in the headline to froth over. I wonder what they’d write about otherwise.

  3. iWatch with Grateful anticipation. My gut tells me this this is for real and they are going to blow the doors off the technology world once again. Any ANALists or Wall Street FUD spewer who claims to know what goes on in the iUnderground is full of $&%!.

  4. Two things – 1. This is going to stop the collapse of AAPL by rekindling the Apple magic? Really?. 2. MDN, please please please quit the most annoying, stupid, jerky video ads. Your faithful followers keep telling me to go away and these ads may actually result in that outcome.

  5. Google glasses is dead in the water. Just try looking at the top corner of your eyes for a few minutes. Now, go get the aspirins for the headache.

    If talking on a phone is a distraction, how about looking away and talking. Without a penny of R&D money, anyone would state, if it isn’t in front of your eyes like a fighter pilots helmet shield, it isn’t a good idea and people aren’t going to wear a display in front of their glasses all day long. We will also need a new bifocal range/ far away, TV, reading, and right in the corner of your one eye.

    1. I’ve worn glasses all my life and trust me have images projected in front of your eyes is a dead idea.

      Image the scene, you’re driving down the motorway and an email notification pops up in front of your eyes and causes you to skid and cause a multiple car pileup.

      Also consider the insurance aspect, if your wearing those things when driving it will invalidate your insurance. There isn’t an insurance company on the planet that will cover you wearing glasses that distract you from driving.

      Also add that people who have never worn glasses are going to have to get used to wearing them. The first few months of wearing glasses is hard and painful as your eyes alphabet to adjust to the lenses.

      There is no way this thing will be sellable and you not catch me wearing the bloody things regardless how they work.

      An iwatch on the other hand I will buy – especially if its under $200.

  6. No one I have seen has addressed the question. Why?

    If you stop and think it becomes quickly apparent. Answering a phone call, reading a text message or saving a voice note or checking the time, weather or whatever does NOT really need a full size iPhone screen after taking the iPhone out of your purse or pocket.

    In addition, doing the removal from wherever you stored your iPhone is often a serious distraction that easily costs many lives each year from walkers to drivers. I have personally seen a girl using her iPhone walk in front of traffic with all associated braking & shouting.

    That doesn’t count the iPhones lost in toilets.

    With the rise of Siri, getting and sending alerts and responses is something a BT or NFC communication can do just fine…PLUS…it can connect with either iPhone or iPad & maybe (most likely) your MacBook Air or Pro if it is turned on and within range.

    1. Why? I’ll tell you why. The world is not America where there is relatively large spaces and 8-cylinder vehicles choking the roads. No, the world has learned to do transactions on the fly in really compressed spaces. In places like Hong Kong, someone would stab you with a bic pen if you stopped to pay for a fare with a debit, credit or cash card. Its all done with a chip and often worn on the wrist as a chip on a watch or jewelry. Now add a simple communication and perhaps a media device to that and you have a winner. Just have to get Americans out of the dark ages, and away from their Home Entertainment Systems and Game console mentality, and Apple could sell a lot there too.

  7. Sure, it’s a watch. BUT what if you can control your apple TV with it?
    Think about the remote app on the ipad. Look at how much dead space there is. It would work on a watch-sized screen.

  8. The article says it: just like the slap bracelets that were popular among kids. As said before: 9-year olds and Dick Tracy fans.

    Another take, a watch is a pile of germs and not allowed in health care. That excludes a large number of people who have learned to live without a watch.

  9. The technology isn’t there yet, but I can now imagine down the road where we’d have a “slap bracelet” watch that can come off of your wrist to bend back into a stiff flat form factor to be used for a phone-to-ear call or to use like an iOS device of today but when wrapped around the wrist switches to other functions like displaying the time, alerts, stocks, biometrics, etc.

    The screen tech is almost here, but to really make it work you’ve got to have printable flexible circuit boards and batteries which I don’t think is really feasible yet (I could be mistaken on that.

    Some of that sort of stuff could be crammed into a metallic top and bottom of the bracelet. This type of watch could be 5 or more years away but as a concept I think it will eventually be attainable.

  10. If there is an “iWatch”, I’m betting it is not a stand-alone iOS device, but more of a companion accessory device for an iPhone. And I would bet the cost will come in at well under $100.

    If the watch complemented the iPhone, providing notifications and other benefits when the watch and iPhone were in close proximity, while still allowing full iPhone function when separated, then it would be a “nice-to-have”.

    While wearing the watch, it would be great if I didn’t have to enter my passcode to use my phone. I could use a strong passcode for greater security, rather than the simple passcode I have now.

    The watch could allow for NFC without pulling out my iPhone, but, of course, could not be used if the two devices were not in close proximity. I would allow Siri to enable / disable NFC through the watch interface so I didn’t have to have NFC on all the time. “Siri, enable NFC”.

    The watch could allow the iPhone to be set to vibrate when the watch was close by, but sound a ring tone when separated.

    As an incoming call notification device, it would benefit people like my wife who many times has not noticed a missed call because her phone was in her purse and set to vibrate so as to not disturb her co-workers.

    Oh and it would display the time.

    I just thought of a cool proximity accessory for the iPhone that would make a great companion to the iWatch … call it the “Finger Phone” or the finger phone. A small speaker is implanted in the tip of the thumb, and a microphone is implanted in the tip of the pinkie finger. When a call comes in, the user taps the iWatch to answer the call and holds their thumb to their ear and their pinkie finger near their mouth … no need to pull the iPhone out of the pocket.

  11. The “best” computer is the one you do not see. An Apple watch would fit into that kind of thinking. It would report the time, monitor your environment and facilitate communications initially. Beyond that, not so much.

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