Earlier this morning Bloomberg reported that Samsung have now confirmed they are working on a Smart Watch.
In a Bloomberg interview with Executive Vice President of Mobile at Samsung, Lee Young confirmed “We are preparing products for the future, and the watch is definitely one of them”. Amid rumours that Apple are working on the iWatch, Samsung’s Lee states “the issue here is who will first commercialize it so consumers can use it meaningfully”.
Samsung are not new to the Smart Watch territory, back in 2009 they released the S9110 which was a flop as it tried to cram an entire phone into a 11.89mm thick watch sacrificing a lot of features. The difference between then and now, is that the general theme that these companies are following is having a watch which doesn’t replicate the Dick Tracy or Michael Knight style, using the watch to talk through, but merely using the watch as a portal to the phone, showing notifications from Facebook, Twitter and email and being able to read text messages or control the volume of your phone.
The one thing that is certain, is that both Apple & Samsung will come up against some serious competition in the form of the immensely successful Kickstarter project, Pebble, and also the likes of Cookoo which both offer low powered Bluetooth connectivity to your mobile with multiple notifications at a glance, geofencing and both are open sourced with access to API’s.
The problem with Apple and Samsung, is that they will probably lock the watch down to iOS or Android, where as the Cookoo and Pebble both allow the user to use any phone they wish.
The biggest issue is not what the phone will do, or if Apple produce a better product than Samsung, it’s how these companies will displace the major players in the watch market off of your wrist. I am sure The Watch Spy will agree that it will be unlikely that we will see somebody wearing a Breitling on one wrist and an Apple iWatch on the other.
We look forward to seeing how this race pans out as both are rumoured to be out in 2013….