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« FaceFlipBook for iPhone and iPad Review | Main | Wearable Technology »

The Apple Smart Watch

Apple have revealed that they have lodged a patent for a smart watch. The patent describes a wrist watch with a flexible touchscreen display which can wrap around the wrist.

Apple have been working on the concept since 2011. The watch will hold a mobile computer which will communicate with smart phones and tablets wirelessly. The smart watch will provide a revolutionary new platform for mobile technology and opens up a whole new realm of mobile apps and gadgets.

Uses of a Smart Watch

Smart watches could be used to constantly monitor the heart rate of athletes and keep fit enthusiasts. They could report the data direct to the Internet via a smart phone, such as an iPhone. This will provide runners and cyclists with a more convenient, and knowing Apple, more stylish alternative to uses products such as Garmin and Polar.

Smart watch can also provide health and safety alerts. If somebody is prone to falls or even heart attacks, a smart watch could potentially alert others when somebody has a heart attack or is involved in an impact collision (i.e. falling over).

With GPS built-in a smart watch can replace other products already on the market to provide real-time tracking for explorers and adventurers. It could also be set to send SOS signals if mountaineers or skiers find themselves in difficulties.

Battery Life Concerns

The main stumbling block for a smart watch is the battery. People wear watches 24/7 and it is expected that they will stay on all the time. Whereas we are used to charging a mobile phone overnight, people may not be so inclined to take off their watch at night to charge it. A quartz watch battery can last for around 4 years in a modern watch. With GPS and other tracking devices installed, and wi-fi or Bluetooth running, a battery may not last more than 4 days. However, we have already heard that Bluetooth Smart can provide higher bandwidth at lower energy costs than current Bluetooth solutions.

However, there are indications that Apple are working on a new energy system which will convert kinetic energy (movement) into electrical energy. It would be like having a tiny dynamo inside the watch that will constantly generate enough electricity to run it. So it may not require batteries as we know it at all.

Slap Wraps Patent

Apple have been working on a smart watch since August 2011, it is only in the last few days that the US Patent Office have shared this information.

The patent indicated that the watch will “slap” around the users wrist. The material will be made so that it can easily be straightened out so that the surface becomes a flat touch screen to display Apple mobile software.

Some features of the designs in the patent indicate that the watch will have a series of lights that can flash to indicate when a message has been received, or provide other alerts.

Other uses of the watch may be to operate other Apple products, such as iPads and iPhones which are playing music or videos. It would essentially act as a mini remote control.

These are certainly interesting times. Apple are once again leading the way in technological revolutions. While Google may have its Glass, Apple has a watch. Which do you think will be more popular? I know where my money is!


Jon Wade is a researcher and writer at, a website dedicated to sharing the latest medical news and health information. 


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