The iWatch really could be on the way at last! One of the most futuristic of iWatch concepts "just got a dose of validation" from the US patent office, Forbes magazine reports today.
Both Apple Insider and Patently Apple report on the patent application just published for a “an advanced wearable computer in the form of a bracelet that could double as a watch.”
The device has multitouch display. Users “can accomplish a number of different tasks including adjusting the order of a current playlist, or reviewing a list of recent phone calls. "
The patent describes a wristband that uses a bi-stable spring, similar to a snap bracelet.
The iWatch could "sense body position and orient the focus of the visible surface towards the user," says Forbes.
"So if, for instance, you turn your wrist over, the active area of your display would move with your wrist. Also in the patent application “a solar panel beneath the display” and a mechanism to capture the kinetic energy of the user’s arm motion.
Forbes says,"This is the most radical notion of an iWatch we’ve seen yet and, who knows, it could be the closest to production."
Apple Insider says the patent application it discovered "not only boasts a full-length flexible touchscreen display, but conforms to a user's body through the use of a "slap bracelet" mechanism.
According to the filing, in one simple form, the iWatch involves embedding a flexible display, along with electronic components, into a conventional slap bracelet. The bi-stable spring would be made out of thin steel, then wrapped in a fabric covering and heat sealed. The display would be overlaid with an adhesive over one side of the bracelet.
An alternative is a more robust design in which the flexible display is mounted directly to the bracelet and "framed" by a thicker, more comfortable fabric covering. Switches and critical electronics should also be resistant to fatigue, the patent notes, as the bracelet switches from a convex shape to a concave configuration depending on whether it is being worn by the user.
Thursday's patent application is tangible evidence that Apple is working on a so-called "iWatch," says Apple Insider.
Patently Apple comments, " Apple states that with a multitouch display, the user 'can accomplish a number of different tasks including adjusting the order of a current playlist, or reviewing a list of recent phone calls. ' This is one hot little invention and the drum that's been beating very loudly of late calling for an iWatch, appears to be well into development. "
One thing is certain: the iWatch has the potential to put Apple back on top of the innovation tree!