“Apple is investigating the possibility of transferring Apple Watch’s haptic feedback mechanism from the device chassis to its wrist strap, a design that would allow for a much thinner product, according to a patent application discovered Thursday,” Mikey Campbell reports for AppleInsider.
“Capable of alerting its wearer to incoming alerts and other notifications, the proposed band promises to deliver an identical experience to Apple Watch’s internal Taptic Engine minus the bulk,” Campbell reports. “According to the document, the proposed band incorporates hardware —including but not limited to electromagnetic technology, piezoelectric technology, and/or electroreactive polymers —that allows the band to move laterally or side-to-side with respect to the host device. Other embodiments call for the band to move up and down or rotate around an axis.”
“Current Apple Watch iterations are relegated to the back-and-forth motion of a linear actuator. Called the Taptic Engine, Apple’s in-house haptic solution is able simulate a multitude of tactile signals, including taps and shakes, thanks to special software-driven damping technology,” Campbell reports. “While not explicitly described in today’s filing, the haptic band would likely attach to, and subsequently receive instructions from, its host watch through a hardwired connection. Perhaps not coincidentally, Apple Watch already sports a non user-serviceable diagnostics port capable of transferring both data and power to the wearable.”
Read more in the full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: Apple Smartbands™.
• Whoever comes up with an accurate Apple Watch smartband that acts as a non-invasive blood glucose monitor (reverse iontophoresis) is going to make a mint. — MacDailyNews, August 24, 2015
• Oh yes, let there be add-on GPS, battery extenders, and more! The thought of wearing our Apple Watch Sports but also having to lug around our iPhones on runs just for the GPS is unpalatable. — MacDailyNews, March 5, 2015
• We can’t wait to see where the future leads for Apple Watch especially in the areas of speed (apps need to respond faster) and independence (less reliance on iPhone, perhaps via Apple “smartbands” that deliver things like GPS tracking for runners, extended battery life, etc.) — MacDailyNews, December 17, 2015
• We would love to see Apple launch Apple Smartbands that add sensor and other functionality to Apple Watch. An Apple GPS Smartband and an Apple Battery Smartband, right now, would sell like wildfire. It’s a missed opportunity for the original Apple Watch’s first Christmas, but we hope to see such items in 2016. — MacDailyNews, December 11, 2015
• If Apple were to release a range of “Apple Smartbands” for the existing Apple Watch, starting with the “Apple Smartband GPS,” they would sell millions more Apple Watch units with this move alone. — MacDailyNews, February 19, 2016
Analyst: Apple smartbands are a part of the Apple Watch’s future – April 8, 2016
Apple patent application hints at Apple Watch ‘Smartbands’ utilizing hidden 6-pin data connector – February 20, 2016
Apple likely to debut new Apple Watch bands at March event – January 27, 2016
‘Smartbands’ won’t stop Apple from releasing new Apple Watches every year – August 24, 2015
Charging the Apple Watch using its 6-pin accessory port – May 28, 2015
Apple Watch houses mysterious six-contact data connection port – March 5, 2015
Apple Watch’s hidden port a goldmine for developers, accessory makers – May 4, 2015