Microsoft's Surface team working on 'translucent aluminum' smart watch - report

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited January 2014
As reports claim Apple is gearing up to launch a so-called "iWatch," another rumor claims that Microsoft is late enough in the development stage of its own smart watch that testing of the device has moved over to the company's Surface hardware development team.

iWatchArtist's rendition of purported Apple smartwatch. | Source: Yrving Torrealba


Microsoft's Surface tablet team is now prototyping device hardware featuring Oxynitride Aluminum, or "transparent aluminum" that is three times harder than glass, according to a report from The Verge on Monday. The Redmond, Wash., company is reportedly requesting 1.5-inch displays from component manufacturers as it moves closer to releasing a wrist-worn accessory.

Prior to testing being handed over to the Surface team, Microsoft had been experimenting with smart watch concepts through the company's Xbox accessories team, the report said. The hardware purportedly runs a modified version of Microsoft's Windows 8 operating system.

A key component of Microsoft's alleged smart watch is said to be the concept of removable bands in a variety of colors. Early test hardware reportedly includes bands in blue, yellow, black, white and grey.

Prototype hardware is said to include as much as 6 gigabytes of internal storage, and even integrated LTE support for high-speed data connectivity on the go. That would be a major change from existing smart watches like the Pebble or MetaWatch, which rely on Bluetooth connectivity to a smartphone for data.

The smart watch space has been heating up with options like the Pebble, MetaWatch, Sony SmartWatch 2, and I'm Watch. Reports have claimed that in addition to Microsoft, Google, Samsung, and LG are also working on new wrist-worn hardware accessories.

Apple has gone as far as to file for ownership of the product name "iWatch" in a number of countries around the world. That product is rumored to arrive in 2014.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 55


    Ballmer's excited because it will run the full version of office. A true enterprise watch instead of just a consumption watch¡

  • Reply 2 of 55
    richard getzrichard getz Posts: 1,142member


    If they get it out in the market now, it could be discontinued before the iWatch is released :) 

  • Reply 3 of 55
    Their so-called smart watch won't be smart till they copy Apple .
  • Reply 4 of 55


    Great....fail.

  • Reply 5 of 55
    richard getzrichard getz Posts: 1,142member

    Quote:


    A key component of Microsoft's alleged smart watch is said to be the concept of removable bands in a variety of colors.



     


    Really? That's what they are coming to the table with as a 'key component'? Ugh! 


     


    With all these companies getting into the smart watch business, it seems like they will generate just enough awareness and interest for Apple to step into that space and dominate. 

  • Reply 6 of 55


    I wonder if Scotty gave that to them...

  • Reply 7 of 55
    jusephejusephe Posts: 108member
    [B]"The competition was just flumoxed. They went back to the drawing boards they torn up their designs because they weren't competitive"[/B]

    Steve Jobs comenting iPad sucess at iPad 2 introduction event.

    Why I got a strong feeling it will happen again...
  • Reply 8 of 55
    I laugh when I read it will run Windows 8.
  • Reply 9 of 55
    lukefrenchlukefrench Posts: 102member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Richard Getz View Post


     


    Really? That's what they are coming to the table with as a 'key component'? Ugh! 


     


    With all these companies getting into the smart watch business, it seems like they will generate just enough awareness and interest for Apple to step into that space and dominate. 



     


    Put in sharp constrast the last Apple Ad on how the most important in their attitude is the power to say no.

  • Reply 10 of 55
    mikejonesmikejones Posts: 323member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Splash-reverse View Post



    I laugh when I read it will run Windows 8.


    Are they going to have to add micro-sized tiles so that you can have a dozen of them on the watch screen?

  • Reply 11 of 55
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,223member
    I laugh when I read it will run Windows 8.

    Me too, if it has a stop watch function I guess no one will be able to find the start and stop buttons then! LOL
  • Reply 12 of 55
    richsrichs Posts: 11member

    Quote:

    Microsoft's Surface tablet team is now prototyping device hardware featuring Oxynitride Aluminum, or "transparent aluminum" that is three times harder than glass, according to a report from The Verge on Monday. The Redmond, Wash., company is reportedly requesting 1.5-inch displays from component manufacturers as it moves closer to releasing a wrist-worn accessory.


     


    I know where Microsoft got the transparent aluminum...


     


  • Reply 14 of 55
    mikejonesmikejones Posts: 323member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by VisualZone View Post



    What?!! No brown or green? I'm depressed!!



    http://appleinsider.com/articles/07/10/03/microsoft_unveils_second_generation_of_zune_media_players


    I'm sure the poop and vomit colors will come in time.

  • Reply 15 of 55
    cyniccynic Posts: 124member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Splash-reverse View Post



    I laugh when I read it will run Windows 8.


     


    It will also feature a x86 CPU. With active cooling of course. ;-)


    Naturally it will also include Microsoft Microscopic Live Tiles for Windows 8 Modern Style UI ™.


     


    Rumors suggest the watch might hit the market later than initially planned, some time around fall 2014, since Microsoft engineers are currently hard at work trying to figure out how to integrate the control, alt and delete keys into the wristband. /s

  • Reply 16 of 55
    19831983 Posts: 1,171member
    Oxynitride-Aluminum or transparent aluminum. An imaginary Star Trek technology becoming reality? Kirk and Spock would be proud! lol
  • Reply 17 of 55
    jungmarkjungmark Posts: 6,687member
    I wonder if Scotty gave that to them...

    Maybe Microsoft is planning to save two humpback whales.
  • Reply 18 of 55
    gazoobeegazoobee Posts: 3,754member
    Also not really aluminium at all.
  • Reply 19 of 55
    shenshen Posts: 434member
    Maybe they should have made the surface worth buying before moving on to a new product?
  • Reply 20 of 55
    Great....fail.

    If it turns opaque blue, it is a failure. You'll be instructed to "Contact your system administrator." Which is the standard Microsoft Windows solution to everything.
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