Hon Hai Precision Industry Co, (otherwise known as Foxconn) – the chosen manufacturer for a number of the world’s most-major companies, including Apple, has this week unveiled a “smartwatch” which has the ability to connect to Apple’s iPhone.
Considered to be the first smartwatch the company has both had a role in producing, (and shown off to the public), according to a new report Foxconn is said to be taking a huge bet on devices like the one seen above, in the hopes that they will eventually become the next driver for increased revenue growth.
“The wearable computing device can be used to measure the user’s vital signs such as respiration and heartbeat, as well as to check phone calls and Facebook posts,” Hon Hai executives said while showing the watch at a shareholders meeting earlier this week.
Towards the end of May, you may recall we reported that there were whispers flying that Foxconn may be considering diversifying its core business model into more mobile applications, such as the production of mobile accessories. The change was said to be imminent due to Hon Hai having hit its limits in growth, with the WSJ reporting (at the time) that this had spurred the company into realising that there was a “pressing need” for business and customer diversification.
Most interestingly, though, is the reported features of the new wrist-based device – with comments made by Hon Hai’s Chairman, Terry Gou, (and relayed by Want China Times), suggesting that his company’s wireless communications and medical research groups may ‘also [be planning] to add new features such as fingerprint identification to the gadget’ in the future.
“With such a device, you can keep your phone in your pocket and simply check all kinds of messages on your watch,” Gou told the company’s shareholders.
Meanwhile, rumours and speculation which suggest that Apple may, too, be planning to enter the smartwatch market are growing stronger as each day passes. Probably not helped along by the fact that Foxconn is also the firm’s chosen manufacturer for its popular mobile devices, such as the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad.
The biggest question which will likely be looming on the lips of iPhone users now? – Does Apple really need to create a smartwatch? … Heck, Foxconn’s smartwatch connects with the iPhone, and (reportedly) has the ability to control the smartphone without touching it. The Pebble is doing well, as are other indie offerings. Perhaps Apple is quite happy to sit back and let Foxconn take this emerging market for itself?
Although, (I have to admit) — even the thought of a Siri-connected smartwatch which links up with the iPhone, and is both reliable and convenient in its designed daily usage, does make the Apple fan in me jump with excitement.
Maybe we’ll see it this Fall. Maybe we won’t. One thing is certain: I want to get my hands on Foxconn’s attempt at the “smartwatch,” just to see what it does! … Which is sad, considering we don’t have any availability or pricing information on the new watch, (just yet).
We’ll keep you posted on whatever we hear regarding Foxconn’s new smartwatch. In the meantime, you can check out all the latest coverage on Apple’s (reportedly) in-development “iWatch,” here.
/ iClarified (h/t)