Apple tests out new 'iWatch': report
Apple is apparently experimenting with a curved glass wristwatch, according to a pair of new articles.
According to a pair of separate reports in the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times, engineers in Cupertino are currently experimenting with a curved-glass time piece, which would be "based on [Apple's understanding of how such glass can curve around the human body," the Times reports. The paper goes on to note that Gorilla Glass-maker Corning had recently succeeded in manufacturing bendable glass called Willow Glass.
Other than that, however, there are more questions than answers. We don't know when Apple would release such a device – if it releases it at all – or how much it would cost. We also don't know what the device would look like or how it would operate, although it seems reasonable to assume that the watch would sync up with other Apple devices, such as the iPad or iPhone.
"The screen on any wrist-based device would be too small to show much or provide much touch interaction, so it's a reasonable guess that a voice interface would be provided," writes Larry Seltzer of Information Week "But what would it do? It could be a mostly voice-controlled phone. It could be a GPS, but the screen would be too small for useful maps, so it could only do voice output, i.e. Siri telling you to turn left, etc. None of this seems all that compelling to me."
Seltzer's conclusion: "Either I lack Apple's imagination or Apple does."
Zach Epstein at Boy Genius Report is a little more sanguine. Consider, he suggests, the relatively robust interest in the Pebble smart-watch.
"While there may be a niche market that has shown interest in smart watches that connect to a smartphone and offer a range of add-on functionality, mass-market consumers have given no indication that they are interested in such a device," Epstein writes. "But the same could have been said about tablets before Apple’s iPad was released in 2010."