Apple iWatch, Samsung, Watch, Google, Smart Watch
It's not a surprise, but the Financial Times has confirmed that Google is on the long list of company's developing a Smart Watch, along with of course both Apple and Samsung. FT reports that "A Google patent application for a wearable computer filed in 2011 and approved last year lends credence to the rumours. The filing describes a "smart watch" with a dual-screened "flip-up display", "tactile user interface" and onboard camera.
A Google spokeswoman declined to comment on any plans for the smart watch market. Not every patent becomes a product. But Google's filing neatly makes the case for smart watches more generally:
"A variety of portable user devices provide wireless network connectivity. Various features of a device often require a user to access the device at inconvenient times to perform a desired function. As a result, a user may simply not employ the device to its full capabilities.""
Sounds like a smart watch to us, and maybe not a great time to be one of the popular fitness band companies like Nike, Jawbone or FitBit.
Earlier this week, Bloomberg News reported that "We've been preparing the watch product for so long," Lee Young Hee, executive vice president of Samsung's mobile business, said during an interview in Seoul. "We are working very hard to get ready for it. We are preparing products for the future, and the watch is definitely one of them."
Bloomberg reports that "Features under consideration include letting users make calls, see the identity of incoming callers and check map coordinates, said one of the people, who asked not to be identified because the plans aren't public. It would also house a pedometer for counting steps and sensors for monitoring health-related data, such as heart rates, this person said."