2013 is officially the year of smartwatch rumors as Microsoft chatter begins

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer delivers a keynote address at the 2012 International Consumer Electronics Show at the Las Vegas Convention Center on Jan. 9, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Kevork Djansezian/GETTY IMAGES)
April 15, 2013

We’re only four months into 2013, and yet it already seems clear that this is going to be the year of rampant smartwatch speculation.

Following rumors that Apple and Google are developing touch-enabled smartwatches, Microsoft is reportedly developing a smartwatch of its own as well, the Wall Street Journal reports.

It’s unclear if Microsoft will actually pursue a smartwatch, but executives from Asian component suppliers told the WSJ that Microsoft has asked for shipments of potential watch components. Additionally, one executive admitted to meeting with Microsoft’s research and development team around a smartwatch project.

Rumors that Apple has been working on a smartwatch, dubbed iWatch by gadget geeks, have been swirling since December. The most recent report points to Apple using new flexible glass technology from Corning for the device, which would be a pretty significant step forward from the current generation of smartwatches, like the Kickstarter-darling Pebble.

With the rise of wearable computing, thanks to devices like Jawbone’s Up and Nike’s Fuelband, it makes sense for the next major wave of mobile computing to focus on your wrist. We’re used to wearing watches there, and it would be far simpler for the public to accept (and afford) a wrist-based computer, rather than something like Google’s futuristic Project Glass.

Copyright 2013, VentureBeat

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