iWatch to come in two sizes, feature wireless charging and be ‘fashionable’

By , Apr 9, 2014

iWatch concept (teaser 001)

Since we first began seeing ‘iWatch’ rumors back in early 2013, I’ve been wondering what the smartwatch will look like. Will it look like a traditional watch, similar to those from Samsung and Motorola? Or will it look more like a fitness band, like Nike’s FuelBand? What kind of features will it have?

Admittedly, there’s been no shortage of reports on the so-called iWatch, but a new research note from KGI Securities’ Ming-Chi Kuo offers perhaps the most comprehensive look at the device we’ve seen. The analyst says the watch will come in two sizes, feature wireless charging, and will be “fashionable.”

MacRumors has obtained a copy of Kuo’s research note, and reports that the iWatch will come in 1.3-inch and 1.5-inch flavors—both of which will come with flexible AMOLED displays with sapphire covers to protect from scratches. They’ll also both feature various biometric sensors and an NFC chip.

Kuo believes many of the iWatch’s mechanical components will be made of liquid metal, including an innovative antenna design that will allow for wireless charging. That should make it easy to recharge the 200-250mAh battery pack, which the analyst says will “last longer than most other wearables.”

So what is it going to look like? Kuo expects the smartwatch will be slim and light, and fashionable in appearance. “We are confident on Apple’s ability to make wearable devices with good fashion sense, which sets Apple apart from rivals.” He also says the device will be offered at multiple price points.

iWatch concept (Stopwatch and navigation, Gabor Balogh 001)iWatch concept by Gábor Balogh 

So it sounds like the iWatch will start at current smartwatch prices, maybe a little more expensive, and go up from there. Depending on what materials Apple uses, high-end iWatch models could rival high-end wristwatches, meaning the most expensive models could venture into the thousands of dollars.

Fashion is the name of the game; most expensive model likely priced at several thousand US dollars. Referring to the rules of the fashion market, we predict the iWatch casing and band will come in various materials. The most expensive model of the iWatch line will carry a price tag of several thousand US dollars. 

Admittedly, this sounds like an odd approach for Apple, who typically tries to keep its consumer products affordable. But if you look at its other product lines, there are generally large gaps between entry-level and top-tier model pricing. For example, the MacBook Pro starts at $1299 and maxes out at $3300.

Also worth noting is that Kuo is one of the most reliable sources for Apple intel in the business, nailing down most of the details for the iPhone 5s, 5c and the two iPads in January of last year—9 months before they launched. And, a lot of what he’s said today lines up with previous reports and information.

Anyway, Apple is expected to unveil its iWatch in September, and industry watchers think it could sell as many as 65 million units by the end of the year.

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  • Jeffrey

    This again makes me so excited, the only thing i worry about is about the price, i doubt that i would buy it if it’s the price of an ipod touch or even more expensive… Then again it’s a must have for me and sother apple fans

    • Tom

      I also worry whether it will support my iPhone 5 or not.

      • grumpyfuzz

        Knowing Apple, they probably won’t support the iPhone 5. They want to get more money from you so you have to upgrade.
        P.S, it’s not only Apple that does this, but a ton of other companies do also.

      • Jeffrey

        ofcourse it will-_- i’m sorry but that’s a fairly stupid question… nothing personal though…

  • Nonya Business

    Can you people stop using Gábor Balog’s concept? I do not find it as an adequate example of what a GOOD looking smart watch could look like, especially one from Apple. I am sorry to anyone who actually thinks this is a good concept, but seriously there are way better concepts out there to choose from, it’s almost like you signed a deal to use his concept on every article describing Apples rumoured iWatch.

    Now back to the article. This rumour is quite interesting but I do have to take it with a grain of salt, especially when he states that the top of the line iWatch will cost “several thousand US dollars”. If that is indeed the truth, Apple as we know it now will start to erode away more so than ever. No one is going to pay a couple thousand on a watch that has the same features as the next time, but limited in said features and battery life. I have no choice but to assume that what he is stating are rumours made up by him.

  • Simche Apple Konstantinovic

    iWatch carrying a price tag of several thousands of dollars?
    Even if one is fond of Apple devices, here is what’s going to happen IF TRUE:
    1) 99% of people (even dedicated Apple folks) won’t buy this. One rather gets a Macbook Pro or something…
    2) iWatch will die very fast because no money is getting inside the Apple bank…
    3) Just no, who is that crazy? Enough with the ‘it’s worth it’ motto

  • Melvco

    The “thousands of dollars” price tag is tough for me to get behind, but some thoughts:

    – Original iPad was rumored to cost $1000+ ahead of its unveiling. Perhaps that has to do with miscommunication in supply chain or bad/deliberately bad information from sources.
    – Apple has product lines with near $3000 gaps between the entry model and maxed out model. Very possible it could price iWatch starting at $200, with a high-end model between $1500-$2000 (typical cost of a high-end wristwatch)
    – Maybe this higher end model Kuo speaks of isn’t really part of Apple’s wearable strategy. Maybe it’s just a Vertu-type product meant to capture a real niche ‘luxury’ part of the smartwatch/wearables market.

    All of this being said, I wouldn’t be surprised if there isn’t a $1000+ iWatch at all. Apple is very much a consumer/mass-market kind of company, and nothing about a $2000 smartwatch lines up with that.

    • http://facebook.com/kurtlewisart Kurt

      I took it as, one model will be made from a precious metal for rich people. and the rest will be around the price we are expecting made of cheaper metals.

      • marco1993

        I was thinking more like product red where the item goes into auction and goes to the highest bidder because it’s one of a kind

  • BozzyB

    65 million units in 3 months?? Again, are you serious??? 6,5 would be confident. You should be very careful with “sources” like this…

  • Tony Trenkle Jr.

    The article last night said this. Again I’m gonna call bullshit.

  • Fun boy

    Too bad fashion is ephemeral.

  • kadeem kadz Dulice

    im not even reading the article …. #TakeMyMoney Plzz

  • Tony

    I continue to say it, if the watch isn’t under 150.00 it isn’t worth it. I can get a new phone for 200, ipad mini for 299 both will do more then a watch for a little bit more money. If they think selling a watch at 200 plus dollars will sell they are dreaming.

  • oralarts

    This guy is out to lunch with his “several thousands of dollars” prediction. Hmmm, should I buy a Mac Pro or an iWatch?