NYT: Apple secretly working on wearable, Siri-compatible computers

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited January 2014
Apple has reportedly begun work on new, tiny, wearable devices that could be controlled with Siri, or used to input information to devices like the iPhone.



One of the prototype products developed by Apple, according to The New York Times, is a "curved-glass iPod that would wrap around the wrist." Users could interact with this device by using their voice, like with Siri on the iPhone 4S.



Another experimental idea from Apple has been small, wearable devices that could be used to input information on another, more powerful device like an iPhone. These accessories could also wirelessly display information on other devices, like iPods.



Apple's interest in wearable electronics has reportedly been spearheaded by a very small group of employees at the company. But prototypes of some wearable devices have allegedly been built by the company.



Author Nick Bilton said Apple is not alone in its pursuit of these devices: Google, too, is said to have been working on wearable computers that could connect to Android smartphones. Calling the smartphone the "first wearable computer," Bilton said smartphones will eventually become the "hub" for all information, "transmitting power and Internet access to sensors and screens that are tacked on to our clothing."



Of course, Apple has produced wearable version of the iPod for years, and currently sells the iPod shuffle and iPod nano, both of which include a clip so it can be attached to clothing. The iPod nano, which includes a multi-touch display, can also be worn as a watch with available accessories.







Though the tiny iPod nano includes a standard 30-pin iPod dock connector, it does not include any wireless functionality that would allow it to wirelessly communicate with an iPhone. As it stands, the iPod nano is a standalone media playback device.



But Bilton's report envisions a future where all devices are connected, and wearable electronics could include glasses or even contact lenses with built-in screens, capable of displaying information to users.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 72
    So something like this: http://www.imwatch.it/



    These are a great idea, but a little pricey. Apple's version with Siri should be nice...
  • Reply 2 of 72
    You gotta be pretty dumb to think for one second that Apple have not been working on such devices.
  • Reply 3 of 72
    backtomacbacktomac Posts: 4,579member
    Not a big fan of IBM but this commercial seems well ahead of its time.
  • Reply 4 of 72
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by backtomac View Post


    Not a big fan of IBM but this commercial seems well ahead of its time.



    The ad fails to show what will be the killer feature of wearable computing though. Augmented Reality. Paired together this will be the next big evolutionary step in computing since the tablet and perhaps since the GUI/Mouse.
  • Reply 5 of 72
    sricesrice Posts: 112member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by backtomac View Post


    Not a big fan of IBM but this commercial seems well ahead of its time.



    It's not ahead of it's time. Microsoft developed the idea of a vaporware product commercial years ago.
  • Reply 7 of 72
    backtomacbacktomac Posts: 4,579member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by monstrosity View Post


    The ad fails to show what will be the killer feature of wearable computing though. Augmented Reality. Paired together this will be the next big evolutionary step in computing since the tablet and perhaps since the GUI/Mouse.



    Well I got to disagree. To me the "killer" feature is that computers are becoming less obtrusive and are becoming 'invisible' to the user. That's the next "killer" feature IMO. Apple are pretty much the leader in this trend already. I look for that to continue.
  • Reply 8 of 72
    blastdoorblastdoor Posts: 1,805member
    This kind of stuff will be a much bigger deal for Apple than any TV-related product that they might come out with.
  • Reply 9 of 72
    backtomacbacktomac Posts: 4,579member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Johnny Mozzarella View Post


    Don't forget Sony.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jsir_...e_gdata_player



    That looks clunky as crap to me. So instead of a phone with a small screen I can have a watch with an even smaller screen. Ok...?



    I find the IBM take on wearable computers more interesting because the of voice recognition and glasses that provide a possibly better viewing experience.
  • Reply 10 of 72
    Next thing you know they'll want to implant computers... D'oh....SINGULARITY!



    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Technological_singularity
  • Reply 11 of 72
    Great.

    So the mercantile society of plastic gave us a huge spike in Alzheimer's disease (plastic degrades over time and frees neurotoxins in the air that kill your little fragile brain).

    So Wifi and Bluetooth expose our little fragile brains to electromagnetic waves that increase the rate of migraines.

    And Google/Apple's idea of progress is to add even more stuff, closer to us, more connected? I hope not.



    On the other hand, I recently observed that several products that were banned in my country for being known toxics (cancer inducing stuff) are still sold on the other side of the border. I wish the guys who knowingly keep selling them because "it has not been proven dangerous in this other country" could be tried for high treason against the people and executed in a very painful fashion.



    We have lost many, many geniuses and more normal "bright minds" to cancer and Alzheimer. How long will we keep this going?
  • Reply 12 of 72
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by backtomac View Post


    That looks clunky as crap to me. So instead of a phone with a small screen I can have a watch with an even smaller screen. Ok...?



    I find the IBM take on wearable computers more interesting because the of voice recognition and glasses that provide a possibly better viewing experience.



    While Sony has an actual working product, it lacks a high quality retina display and multitouch.

    When Apple does it using the best technology it will be far less clunky.



    How is the IBM thingy providing a better experience when it is so

    simultaneously creating a huge blind spot?



    Society-at-large considers people who wear Bluetooth headsets all the time as self-important douche bags.

    I'm sure the douche bags will be lining up to get the head mounted display as well because you never know when you might need to SELL! SELL! SELL!
  • Reply 13 of 72
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by backtomac View Post


    Well I got to disagree. To me the "killer" feature is that computers are becoming less obtrusive and are becoming 'invisible' to the user. That's the next "killer" feature IMO. Apple are pretty much the leader in this trend already. I look for that to continue.



    I would say becoming "less obtrusive " was more a steady progression than the big evolutionary step to be found from the erm……. iView ?
  • Reply 14 of 72
    Yes, combadges .... I was expecting this ...
  • Reply 15 of 72
    "NYT: Apple secretly working on wearable, Siri-compatible computers"



    It's not really a "secret" if it's being reported by the New York Times, and reported on by other media outlets.
  • Reply 16 of 72
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by umrk_lab View Post


    Yes, combadges .... I was expecting this ...



    The idea predates comm badges, and is, as described, much more similar to this:



  • Reply 17 of 72
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by monstrosity View Post


    You gotta be pretty dumb to think for one second that Apple have not been working on such devices.



    I disagree with this to a degree.



    I think you are dumb if you think that Apple hasn't thought about it, prototyped it and perhaps even patented it. Because in all likelihood they have



    But you are also dumb if you assume that all prototypes and thoughts will end up being produced. It's possible that Apple considered, tested, and rejected this idea along with the 7 inch iPad as impractical for their target audience (which by the by isn't techno geeks or computer pros)
  • Reply 18 of 72
    bageljoeybageljoey Posts: 1,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Johnny Mozzarella View Post




    Society-at-large considers people who wear Bluetooth headsets all the time as self-important douche bags.

    I'm sure the douche bags will be lining up to get the head mounted display as well because you never know when you might need to SELL! SELL! SELL!



    Don't forget how "society-at-large" looked at cell phone users 20 years ago...
  • Reply 19 of 72
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by charlituna View Post




    But you are also dumb if you assume that all prototypes and thoughts will end up being produced. It's possible that Apple considered, tested, and rejected this idea along with the 7 inch iPad as impractical for their target audience (which by the by isn't techno geeks or computer pros)



    Who said "produced"? not I.



    "working on" and experimenting with is what I'm talking about.



    I'm sure for every 20 mockups and experiments they "work on" only 1 maybe "produced".





    As wearable computing will be huge in future, they would be pretty dumb to not be pouring resources into it. To create and learn from experiments so that when the time comes and the technology is ripe, they are prepared.
  • Reply 20 of 72
    backtomacbacktomac Posts: 4,579member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Johnny Mozzarella View Post


    While Sony has an actual working product, it lacks a high quality retina display and multitouch.

    When Apple does it using the best technology it will be far less clunky.



    The watch just seems to function as a secondary display for the phone and a crappy one at that. It was funny how the guy went through all these contortions to show how if you look at the missed calls on the watch they would appear when you pull out your phone and unlock the screen. Only problem is that it seemed more difficult to use the watch for this than just pulling out the phone and checking notifications. Epic fail IMO.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Johnny Mozzarella View Post


    How is the IBM thingy providing a better experience when it is so

    simultaneously creating a huge blind spot?



    Well the blind spot concern is valid. But I like the idea a display in glasses. It sort of a heads up display which I imagine could be very nice. The big improvement on the UX is the voice commands.
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