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Apple's Jony Ive suggests 'iWatch' could spell 'trouble' for conventional watchmakers

Apple's Jony Ive suggests 'iWatch' could spell 'trouble' for conventional watchmakers

September 4, 2014

Swatch and other conventional watchmakers better watch out for the soon to be launched “iWatch.”

That’s what Apple design chief Jony Ive seems to have suggested in bragging about the long-rumored wearable device. In a piece about fashion and technology, the New York Times relates an account of Ive’s delighted boast regarding the first-generation product:

According to a designer who works at Apple, Jonathan Ive, Apple’s design chief, in bragging about how cool he thought the iWatch was shaping up to be, gleefully said Switzerland is in trouble — though he chose a much bolder term for “trouble” to express how he thought the watchmaking nation might be in a tough predicament when Apple’s watch comes out.

Besides being a health and fitness device, the iWatch is said to be positioned by Apple as a fashion accessory, perhaps featuring a typically stylish design by Ive. It’s expected to be marketed as such with the help of retail chief Angela Ahrendts and vice president Paul Deneve, who were hired by Apple last year from the luxury fashion houses Burberry and Yves Saint Laurent, respectively.

Ive’s remark contrasts with a comment made last year by Swatch CEO Nick Hayek, who said that he didn’t believe that the device would be “the next revolution.” He also suggested earlier this year that Apple call the product something other than the expected “iWatch,” which would be too similar to Swatch’s “iSwatch” trademark.

Apple is rumored to unveil the iWatch along with the “iPhone 6″ at its special media event on Tuesday, Sept. 9. But the wearable device, which could come with a high-end $400 price tag, is not expected to become available until 2015.

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