Apple applies to register 'iWatch' trademark in Japan

TOKYO Mon Jul 1, 2013 6:36am EDT

People wait on a street in front of an Apple store as they await sales of the new iPad in the Apple store in Munich March 16, 2012. REUTERS/Michaela Rehle

People wait on a street in front of an Apple store as they await sales of the new iPad in the Apple store in Munich March 16, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Michaela Rehle

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TOKYO (Reuters) - Apple Inc has applied for a trademark for "iWatch" in Japan, a patent official said on Monday, signaling the iPhone maker may be moving ahead with plans for a watch-like device as gadget makers turn their attention to wearable computers.

The trademark application, submitted on June 3 and released on the Japan Patent Office website on June 27, would cover computers, computer peripherals and wristwatches, the official said. He said it was unknown how long the application process would require.

An Apple spokesman in Japan could not immediately be reached for comment.

Speculation has mounted that Apple is preparing to launch an iWatch and CEO Tim Cook told a gathering of tech and media executives a month ago that wearable products were ripe for exploration, but added he was skeptical, including about Google Inc's recently unveiled Glass which combines a mobile computer and eyeglasses.

"There's nothing that's going to convince a kid who has never worn glasses or a band or a watch to wear one, or at least I haven't seen it," Cook said.

Wearable devices are considered a potential area for hit products as smartphones such as the iPhone and Samsung Electronics Co's Galaxy series are losing their ability to impress consumers and investors.

Samsung, which has leapfrogged Apple as the world's leading smartphone maker, is also developing a wearable device similar to a wristwatch, a source with knowledge of the matter has said.

The New York Times reported in February that Apple was experimenting with the design of a device similar to a wristwatch that would operate on the same iOS platform as its iPhone and iPad and would be made with curved glass.

(Reporting by Nobuhiro Kubo; Writing by Edmund Klamann; Editing by Jeremy Laurence)

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Comments (3)
VOILA wrote:
The trademark iw@ch (phonetically IWATCH) belongs to Intertime (FE) Holdings Ltd, Hong Kong; the internationally famous manufacturer of VOILA Watches & iw@ch as per Japanese Trademark Certificate 4400665 dated July 14, 2000.
Apple would need to seek permission from Intertime before commencing any trade.

Jul 01, 2013 6:38am EDT  --  Report as abuse
eMJayy wrote:
FTA – “There’s nothing that’s going to convince a kid who has never worn glasses or a band or a watch to wear one, or at least I haven’t seen it,” Cook said.

Right, Mr. Cook….’cause what the irresponsible kids of today need is curved GLASS objects on their wrists???

Jul 01, 2013 6:34pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
ralphos wrote:
Please make it only show the time in binary. No other options.

Jul 01, 2013 9:48pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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