wearable patent

Ok, well if reports from The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and Bloomberg didn’t convince you that the rumored ‘iWatch‘ project is real, maybe this will. A new Apple patent filing has surfaced for a wearable accessory with a flexible display.

Apple first filed its “Bi-stable spring with flexible display” patent application with the US Patent and Trademark Office back in August of 2011. And it describes a slap bracelet (remember those?)-like accessory with a full-length flexible touchscreen…

When active, Apple says that the unit can connect to a mobile device, like an iPhone, via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. And it can show relevant information in real time on its flexible display like missed phone calls and messages, iPod playlists and controls, and more.

Here’s an excerpt from the filing (via AppleInsider):

“With a touch screen user input a user can accomplish a number of different tasks including adjusting the order of a current playlist, and reviewing a list of recent phone calls. A response to a current text message can even be managed given a simple virtual keyboard configuration across the face of the flexible display.”

Apple suggests embedding a wide range of sensors in its ‘slap bracelet’ (no seriously, it says that), including gyroscopes and accelerometers. It also mentions built-in ‘ambient light energy collectors,’ or tiny solar panels, to encourage less frequent charging.

As usual, just because this stuff shows up in a patent application, doesn’t guarantee that it’ll ever make it to market. But nevertheless, this is by far the most tangible evidence we’ve seen that Apple is working on an iPhone-compatible, wearable smart device.

And oddly enough, the device described in this filing sounds a lot more like a Nike Fuel band than it does a watch—which would honestly be fine by me. The less conspicuous something like this is, the better, which is where I think Google’s getting it wrong.

Apple credits Fletcher R. Rothkopf, a Mechanical Design Engineer, Derek W. Wright, a Product Design Engineer, and Scott A. Myers, a Design Engineer, as the patent’s inventors.


  • How the hell is the keyboard going to work? And are they just trying to capitalize on the Pebble watch?

    • Melvco

      Patent was filed in 2011.

    • It’s just an idea. They won’t put a keyboard on it. It’ll very likely just use Siri.

    • Jonathan

      Possibly Voice Integration

  • eliran

    crazy who ever is going to buy it , iwatch BS , you will have direct radiation on your body , worse then a cellphone

    • AforAppleAforAndoid

      what about those big-ass glass from google?! idiot.

      • Just because something else is just as bad, you mean to disregard his entire comment and call him an idiot? wow the internetz

  • I can see Apple playing a major role in the medical field with this. Just think, not only is this for a regular consumer, but having doctors, nurses, etc. wearing them and getting real time data about patients and what not. Let’s not stop there. Military and police can use this to their advantage too. Apple would take over the world!

  • i dont want an i watch can i have something else please

  • It does seem kind of cool to reply to a message by talking to your wrist. It’ll make me feel like the secret service talking into their sleeves

  • Maybe they just take the old iPod nano back. Put some new features in. Make a case for wearing this as clock and call it “iWatch”.

  • Lukas

    Does that mean, the iWatch is REALY coming? 🙂 I am so happy if they made one…!