Despite a lack of official confirmation from Apple that its long-anticipated iWatch actually exists, rumors about the product and its possible features persist. Reports that Apple has been busy working out kinks in the development of the device were hot last month, and industry experts predicted that the product would be publicly available by some time late this year.
The latest reports are that Apple is exploring a number of possible options for charging the device. These reports are consistent with the rumors circulating in January that the company was having difficulty with the battery life of the device. Apple reportedly hopes that its iWatch will be capable of operating for up to four to five days without recharging, as consumers will be much more likely to commit to using a wearable product that does not have to be constantly removed and recharged.
Wireless charging capability has also been rumored for the Apple iWatch. Now industry insiders believe that the Cupertino tech-giant may be considering a method of charging that involves magnetic induction, a charging method similar to that which some other companies have already implemented with the use of a charging plate, namely Nokia in its smartphones. The adding of a solar charging layer to the device’s screen has also reportedly been discussed, as has the possibility of recharging via movement of the wearer. It is predicted that of these options magnetic induction is the most likely to be initially used.
Exploration of a different battery design to combat the problem of extended battery life is also reportedly taking place at Apple, though experts say progress in this arena will no doubt be slow.
Rumors persist that the company is also trying to focus on the efficiency of its applications in the fight against shortened battery life. Apple is known for its efficiently operating MacBook Air, iPad and iPhone, so it may have an edge over competitors in the wearables market in this regard.
Developers of the iWatch have also been rumored to be struggling with decisions relating to screen technology and design for the device. The latest reports indicate that there are ongoing difficulties, but reiterate previous rumors that a curved glass display is likely for the wearable device. Previous disclosures that surfaced indicating that Apple has come to an agreement with a manufacturer to greatly increase its production of sapphire glass seem to be confirmed by this latest report as well. Sapphire glass is expected to be used for the product’s display as it is known for its durability. Additionally, the use of a sapphire glass screen with unique touch technology may give Apple an edge over competitors if the company is able to patent that technology as uniquely their own.
Recent reports that top Apple executives had a meeting with the FDA to discuss its greater expansion into the health and fitness arena are fueling the persistent speculation that the iWatch is likely to become a reality for consumers sooner rather than later as well. It anticipated that the iWatch may be an integral part of this expansion and the utilization of the rumored forthcoming HealthBook app aimed at storing and tracking health and fitness information for its users.
By Michele Wessel