Apple’s iWatch might be along sooner than expected, amid signs that the smartwatch is set to enter production in the second quarter.
Until now, rumbles from Apple’s supply chain pointed to a due date of the last quarter of 2014 for Apple’s first-ever foray into the world of wearable technology. That’d mean it’d likely arrive just in time for the Christmas tech market.
But, today it seems the iWatch could drop much, much earlier. According to sources cited by Taiwanese telecoms business site DigiTimes, Apple is planning to release the device during the second quarter.
The same insiders claim that Apple intended to begin mass production of the iWatch during the first three months of next year. But shortages mean that this has been delayed until what we’re assuming is early in the second quarter.
That suggests the device won’t actually hit retail until some time towards the end of that period, presumably around May. This time of the year is now fairly fallow in Apple’s product launch calendar, after the launch of new iPhones was moved to September.
DigiTimes’ report also claims that the much-rumoured 12.9-inch iPad – aka the slate tech sites have informally titled the 'iPad Pro' and 'iPad Maxi' - could face the same kind of production issues that affected the iPad mini 2, aka the iPad Mini with Retina Display.
It’s claimed that supply partners, such as Quanta which will apparently play a key role in the iWatch and the larger iPad, will have to overcome the potential stumbling block of creating a screen that’s very much not to “mainstream specifications”, as well unspecified “challenges in terms of industrial design and assembly”.
Speculation around the iWatch indicates that it will pack a flexible screen, feature low-power Bluetooth to boost battery life and could come in two variants.