Is Apple Already Testing iWatches?
The rumor mill keeps chugging along as more information on the supposed iWatch has come out. Foxconn could be producing a small batch soon Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) to test.
The rumors have been floating around for a while. Smartphones and tablets took the mobile world over, but wearable devices haven’t been explored as thoroughly, and it’s been suggested time and time again that Apple would be making a smartwatch. In March, Samsung (SSNLF.PK) went ahead and announced that it plans to make one. Meanwhile Sony (NYSE:SNE) has actually already made some smartwatches, though with very limited success.
Despite Apple saying nothing about developing a watch — as secrecy has been one of the company’s longstanding traits — much of the hype around wearables has been surrounding an Apple iWatch. The rumors do go pretty deep, adding a sense of probability to them.
One Japanese blog, Macotakara, cited to reports in Taiwan’s Economic Daily News that suggested an iWatch was going into limited production, like that required by a trial phase. However, the news source is not always accurate with its information and predictions, with a track record a bit spottier than that of KGI Securities analyst Ming-chi Kuo.
Many believe there’s a good bit of money to be made in a smartwatch industry. Some estimates put the smartwatch market at $6 billion by 2016. With Apple commanding a strong share of the smartphone and tablet industry, it’s likely that it could also snag a large share of the new watch market, assuming it is actually going to launch a device.
One survey showed that consumers are already more excited about an iWatch than they were about iPads or Macs that ran on Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) components prior to the launch of such devices. Of the consumers surveyed, 19 percent showed interest in buying an iWatch.
One surprising bit of information is that the iWatch could be utilizing Organic Light Emitting Diode technology, which Apple has long been expect to use but never has. The technology would seem practical for something as small as a watch, as it requires less power than the display technologies in other devices. It was also suggested that the screens would be 1.5 inches in size after tests of a 1.8-inch display found the screen to be too large.
As all details remain rumors, it’s hard to say just what can truly be expected from Apple, but it might be even harder to think Apple won’t come out with a smartwatch.
Follow Mark on Twitter (@WallStMarkSheet)