Apple has reportedly filed for a trademark in Japan on the name "iWatch," validating months of speculation that the smart phone giant is developing wearable technology, according to Bloomberg.
The trademark was filed on June 3 with the Japan Patent Office and made public last week.
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Japan is the second country where Apple filed the trademark; Russia was the first, and it is the most solid evidence yet that the company plans to launch a smartwatch in the future.
Apple shares are hovering around the $400 mark, so it makes sense that the company needs to innovate and tackle new growth markets to keep investors confident in the company, Boy Genius Report pointed out.
The Cupertino, Calif.-based company's rumored iWatch has all the capabilities of a smart phone
– similar to the ones James Bond spies use – that would run on the company's iOS platform. The device would be made of curved, bendable glass, sources add.
Sources close to the company said that about 100 product designers are developing the iWatch
Apple would not comment on the reports when reached by ABC News, but Apple CEO Tim Cook addressed the wearable gadget category last month at the All Things D conference and said that the wrist was a "interesting" and "natural" spot for a wearable devices, at least in comparison to Google Glass.
Apple CEO Tim Cook alluded to a smart watch
at the All Things D conference in May, touting his Nike+ FuelBand.
"I think the wrist is interesting. I’m wearing this [FuelBand] on my wrist. It’s somewhat natural. I think for something to work here, you first have to convince people it's so incredible that they want to wear it," he said.
Wearable technology is all the rage; Google Glass is reportedly due out before Christmas, and Samsung has admitted they're working on a smart watch of their own.
While the iWatch is new territory for Apple, the company's latest iPhone, the 5S
, could be available in the next few months. The model's new Retina display packs twice as many pixels into a panel of the same size as the current model’s display and has a narrower bezel around the display, according to a report.
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If the reports are true that the 5S will hit the market this fall, the release would coincide with the newest operating system's debut. The new iOS 7 has been drastically overhauled
Apple is also reportedly working on a lower-cost iPhone that has a plastic shell available in a range of colors.
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