By Jimmie Geddes email: firstname.lastname@example.org | Feb 21, 2013 01:16 PM EST
The current rumors of Apple building a smartwatch are beginning to pick up more steam and a newly discovered patent application filed by Apple gives us some insight on its rumored smartwatch. The patent application shows a wearable device that will work like a "slap bracelet." Apple describes the slap bracelet design in the patent application as:
"The most recent widespread use of such a device was the slap bracelet, also called the slap wrap. The slap bracelet consists of layered flexible steel bands sealed within a fabric cover. Typical slap bracelets are roughly one inch in width by nine inches in length. In a first equilibrium position they can be flat. The second equilibrium is typically reached by slapping the flat embodiment across the wrist, at which point the bracelet curls around the wrist and stays relatively secure in a roughly circular position."
AppleInsider discovered the patent application and claims it was filed by Apple in August 2011 and was for a "Bi-stable spring with flexible display." Apple describes the device's design as being made out of thin steel wrapped in fabric covering, and then heat-sealed. The device's display would be embedded on one side of the bracelet while the logic board and battery of the device would be on the opposite side.
The patent describes the device as having a universal fit for any wrist size. The device would also have on board sensors, accelerometers and gyroscopes. All of these can also be found in all of Apple's iPhones, iPads and iPod touches, so this device sounds like it would most likely be powered by iOS. The sensors would be able to detect if the device is being worn around a person's wrist and would line the display up to be the perfect viewing position for the user to see any information on the device's screen. This sounds like the original iPad demo Steve Jobs gave when he showed how the iPad could magically show the correct orientation on its display when handing the iPad to another person. The patent also suggests that the device could be powered by solar panels and kinetic energy. The patent goes on to describe the display of the device as:
"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."
All of this information definitely sounds like the foundation for Apple's smartwatch that is rumored to be called iWatch.