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At this point, Apple introducing a wearable gadget seems like a forgone conclusion. But on Friday morning, we received the first credible reports of a launch window: an article in Nikkei claims that Apple’s new watch-like wearable device is expected to hit the market in October, and “people familiar with Apple’s plans” are telling Recode that Apple will schedule a special event that month to debut the device.
According to the Nikkei report, the new device will run on iOS 8 and will be focused on managing and collecting biometric data, likely through Apple’s new Healthkit platform, which it announced earlier this week at WWDC. As expected, Nike will be a launch partner for the device and will integrate its services. Nikkei is also claiming that Apple will produce between 3 million to 5 million devices per month. Roughly 2 million smart watches were sold in the entirety of 2013, according to estimates.
By creating its own device, Apple is playing to its strengths: refining an existing product category and bringing it to the masses. In the run-up to the expected launch, Apple has trademarked the term iWatch, hired fashion and health executives, and developed a proprietary motion co-processor, the M7.
But now that a rough time frame is available, the anticipation can start in earnest.
iWatch rendering by Todd Hamilton