Posts tagged: New Hires

The iWatch

iWatch mock up photo by Brett Jordan Via is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0



The iWatch! Could it finally be on it’s way onto our super deserving wrists? Well, we think so. We’re almost as sure as we can really ever really be with an Apple product release, especially a completely new product release. Here’s a bunch of stuff we think we know about the iWatch.


Way, way back in 2008, Apple co-founder  Steve Wozniak confirmed to the Telegraph that “Apple’s future could lie in an ‘iWatch’.”


Then, in the midst of a thousand iWatch rumors, Apple trademarked ‘iWatch’ in Japan, Mexico, Russia and a number of other countries.


Tim Cook has said this about wearable tech:


“I think the wrist is interesting. I’m wearing this (Nike Fuelband) on my wrist…it’s somewhat natural. But as I said before, I think for something to work here, you first have to convince people it’s so incredible that they want to wear it.”


So we know it’s coming, and we know it’s going to be incredible, which is pretty exciting.


The iWatch is rumored to be out this year. Definitely, probably, this year. We think it will be if not announced, at least hinted at during the WWDC in June, and if not, definitely revealed  in the Fall, and released later in the year or early 2015.


The idea is that the iWatch will feature a small number of already established products combined into one, similar to the original iPhone when it came out.


It is said to be standalone with the option to be used in combination with your iPhone. It will most likely include watch, (duh) as well as fitness, health and phone functionality. Siri is a possibility, as is FaceTime capabilities, and maps, if not full iOS 8 functionality.


Fitness and health tech accessories were one of the big new industry product sectors at this year’s CES conference in Vegas. Many believe that it’s where the future of wearable tech lies.


Apple have recently made a bucketload of new roles rumored to be centered on the creation of the iWatch. Some of these are a little vague, others are quite telling. These include:


Sleep analysis experts who hold “several patents for integrating mobile devices with fitness equipment”


Biometric scientists.


Ben Shaffer (previously innovation leader at Nike) and Jay Blahnik, a health and fitness instructor who consulted on the Fuelband for Nike.


Sleep research expert Roy J.E.M Raymann, a scientist from Philips Research last month.  Raymann’s experience includes extensive research into non-pharmacological methods of altering sleep quality and in wearable sensors and miniaturization of sensors related to tracking sleep and alertness activity.


Nancy Dougherty was hired as a hardware engineer in late 2013. Previously she worked with technology-based medical products with Proteus Digital Health. Her work there included a health metric-reading wearable patch and ingestible, Bluetooth-connected smart pills for monitoring dosages and scheduling. Most recently, Dougherty worked as a hardware lead for Sano Intelligence, whose tagline reads ‘the API for the bloodstream,’ working on a wearable sensor system.


Apple recently advertised for an Exercise Physiologist to oversee cardiovascular fitness and energy expenditure tests at its main headquarters campus.


The ad read: Design and run user studies related to cardiovascular fitness & energy expenditure, including calories burned, metabolic rate, aerobic fitness level measurement/tracking and other key physiological measurements.


Michael O’Reilly, M.D. was recently added to the Apple team. Previously he was the  Chief Medical Officer of pulse oximetry (measuring the amount of oxygen in the blood)  for Masimo.


In the fashion line, Former Yves Saint Laurent CEO Paul Deneve, below, was hired last year to work under Tim Cook on a “special project”, and Angela Ahrendts, CEO of Burberry, joined Apple in a newly created position last year, as a senior vice president and member of their executive team.


Pretty promising stuff, right? So what else do we know?


A supply chain source indicated to Cantor Fitzgerald analyst Brian White in early October that it may also serve to integrate with home automation systems, allowing users to control heating and cooling, lights, and audio/video systems right from their wrists.


The design will come from the delightful brain of one Jony Ive (and his no doubt delightful team).


It is expected to have a 1.5-inch display, it will more than likely have a battery life longer than one day (Hi Galaxy gear!) and no one is brave enough yet to guess at a price.


What about competition? There are already a few smart watches, coming from the likes of Samsung with the Galaxy Gear  (1& 2), the Pebble, the Sony smart watch 2 and now Google who has confirmed to the Financial Times after filing a patent that they are indeed manufacturing a smart watch, possibly for release this year.


Apple will be looking to blow them all out of the water, obviously. This means that it has to be innovative in the same way that shocked the world with the original iPhone, and that all the components such as battery life, synchronization with other tech, wearability and functionality will have to be perfect.



So, no pressure, Apple. Also: hurry up, cos we really, really want one.





iWatch mock up photo by Brett Jordan Via is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0