Apple submits a lot of patents for approval that never come to fruition. Still, a new one recently uncovered could be the real deal.
First filed with the U.S. Patent and Trademark office in August 2011 is a patent for a “Bi-stable spring with flexible display.” In other words, this could be the long-rumored iWatch.
The patent describes a wearable accessory device that can be worn on a user’s wrist or other part of the body. When activated, it can be connected via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi to show the user pertinent information in real time.
In terms of usability, the application states:
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.
What I find most interesting about Apple’s application is that it describes a device that goes beyond a simple watch concept. For example, the Pebble Watch includes a traditional clock face that connects to an everyday band. By contrast, Apple’s invention is one piece, where the entire band is the watch.
As Apple Insider notes:
When in its “curled state,” or otherwise attached to a user’s arm, the bracelet can take on the form of an uninterrupted screen. On-board sensors, like gyroscopes and accelerometers, would aid in orienting the screen’s information toward the user.
Very cool, don’t you think?
The discovery of this patent application is the strongest indication yet that Apple is working on an iWatch. Hopefully, we’ll be hearing more about this soon.