Apple CEO, Tim Cook, discussed the potential for an Apple Watch at D11 this week. When asked directly by Walt Mossberg if wearable devices such as smart watches will be part of the post-PC era, Cook revealed that such technology “could be another branch of the [Apple] tree.” The iWatch is coming …
Technology analysts Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher had the pleasure of getting Apple CEO Tim Cook in the hot seat this week at the All Things Digital conference D11. Topics included Apple’s transition from Stevedom, corporate tax avoidance, Apple TV, iOS7 … and wearable computing.
Apple has traditionally been tight-lipped about its ambition to navigate specific emerging markets. However, Cook, conspicuously sporting a wrist-borne Nike+ Fuelband, could hardly contain his enthusiasm for the potential of an “exciting” wearable computing device. A transcription of the relevant portion of the interview is presented below:
Kara: So what’s your take on Google Glass?
Tim: There are some positives. Likely to appeal to certain markets. Hard to see broad appeal though. Wearables are incredibly interesting…it could be a profound area.
Walt: So you’re interested in TV and incredibly interested in wearables.
Tim: Luckily, I can be interested in more than one thing.
Walt: Are wearables part of the post-PC era that goes beyond fitness bracelets?
Tim: Yes, I think so. I wear a FuelBand…Nike did a great job. It’s integrated well with iOS. There are lots of wearables, but of the ones doing more than one thing, I haven’t seen anything great out there. Nothing that will convince a kid that’s never worn glasses or a band to wear one. Or I haven’t seen it…so lots of things to solve here. The area is ripe for exploration, and it’s ripe for us to get excited about. Lots of companies will be in this space.
Walt: Will Apple be one of them?
Tim: I don’t want to answer that one. But it could be another branch of the tree.
Kara: So…glasses, clothing. Where are you interested?
Tim: I’m interested in a great product. I wear glasses because I have to. People generally want glasses to reflect their fashion, style, etc. So this is difficult from a mainstream point of view. I think the wrist is natural. I think there are other things in this space that could be interesting. Sensors are exploding. It will become clearer over time.
Well, it doesn’t get much more clear than that. Apple’s CEO says that the smartwatch market “is ripe for exploration, and it’s ripe for us to get excited about.” Before long, we hope the fruit of such exploration and excitement makes its way to our technologically unadorned wrists. Sophistication through simplicity one more time …
Apple iWatch: [Company Website]