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Monday, 11 February 2013

Wearable Technology: The iWatch is Coming

That Apple is working on new and different devices has been predominant for a while now. Yesterday the New York Times prognosed that the smart watch will soon become a reality, relying on undisclosed sources close to or within the company.
So far Apple has declined to comment on any such plans, but last years development of 'bendable glass' by the company Corning, that also develops the ultra-strong glass for the iPhone screens, strongly suggests this will be used to create wearable smart-devices.

The so-called Willow Glass, can  be curved and flexed into a deep arch without breaking and will therefore be ideal for device screens that curve naturally around the wearers arm for example. The NYT sources state that the prospective 'iWatch' will have a curved watch face made from Willow Glass.

Although, the smart wristwatch is by no means a new concept; many past and (still) current fictional detectives and government agents have often relied on the surprising capabilities of their time timepieces to escape many 'sticky' situations. And several companies have already drawn on this fiction for a selection of their products. Contrary to the expectations of any Apple product, none of these smart(ish) wearable devices have found much commercial success. Nike has probably come closest with their FuelBand (and their competitor Jawbone with their offering Up), both wristbands capable of tracking physical activity (but only the FuelBand will also tell you the time).

When exactly we can expect to be able to adorn our wrists with Apple's latest offering is yet unclear. Any official statements still maintain that they are only in the experimentation phase when it comes to wearable devices. Meanwhile Google are pressing ahead with their hope to make wearable computers mainstream within the next two to three years, with their first offering 'Google Glasses' looking to be released soon. Olympus is also reported to be working on wearable computers.