Back in January, UPROXX contributor Dan Seitz described the rumored coming Apple “smartwatch” thusly: “Basically it’s an iPod Nano, you know, the one with a touchscreen, on a wrist strap.” He also expressed doubt that this would ever see the light of day.
Not surprisingly — seeing as they mimic everything Apple does or is even rumored to be doing — Samsung got cranking on developing a smartwatch of its own and is set to bring it to market later this year or in early 2014.
“We’ve been preparing the watch product for so long,” Lee Young Hee, executive vice president of Samsung’s mobile business, said during an interview in Seoul. “We are working very hard to get ready for it. We are preparing products for the future, and the watch is definitely one of them.”
Lee had no comment on what features the watch may have, how much it would cost and when it would go on sale. The Suwon, South Korea-based company already plans to release three high- end smartphones this year — including the Galaxy S4 unveiled last week and one using the Tizen operating system — as it competes with Apple for customers in a slowing global market.
Samsung’s disclosure comes after people familiar with Apple’s plans said last month the U.S. company has about 100 product designers working on a wristwatch-like device that may perform similar functions to the iPhone and iPad. The global watch industry will generate more than $60 billion in sales this year, and the first companies to sell devices that multitask could lock customers into their platform, boosting sales of phones, tablets and TVs.
The Bloomberg report goes on to note that Apple’s smartwatch is rumored to “let users make calls, see the identity of incoming callers and check map coordinates, one of the people said. It would also house a pedometer for counting steps and sensors for monitoring health-related data, such as heart rates, this person said.” So yeah, like Dan said, it’d basically be a Nano strapped to your wrist.
(Pic via Shutterstock)