As the smartphone market is becoming crowded, leading tech companies like Apple and Samsung are exploring new areas to sell new and innovative products. One such area that offers potential is wearable tech, where products like smart watches and other smart gadgets can be hot commodities.
Apple seems to be leading the charge in this new arena with its smart watch, though no new information, as usual, are given out yet. The secretive world of Apple does not reveal any specific details on the product as of now.
With all the rumors and hype sorrounding the future wearable products of Apple, what does its main competitor do?
The answer is, yes, Samsung is also reportedly making a smart watch of its own.
Samsung’s executive vice president for mobile business, Lee Young Hee, revealed in an interview in South Korea that his company is developing their own smart watch, though he said that this is not a reaction against Apple’s own effort to produce one.
He said: “We’ve been preparing the watch product for so long. We are working very hard to get ready for it. We are preparing products for the future, and the watch is definitely one of them.”
Hee did not give any specifics or when will the watch will be released or how much the new prodcut will cost.
Samsung became the real contenter for the spot Apple has held for years as the number one smartphone maker when the South Korean firm released its Galaxy S line of phones. Apple still remainst the single most popular smartphone maker in the world–with its iPhone 5 selling like hotcakes with its record sales in a quarter–while Samsung is the close number two following its hugely successful release of Galaxy S 3.
The Galaxy S 3 beat Apple’s iPhone 4 S during last year’s third quarter, as Apple fans anticipated the release of the iPhone 5. Last week, Samsung launched its new flagship phone, the Galaxy S 4.
Today, these two strong rivals are facing off again, this time in the new emerging market dubbed wearable tech.
Other companies are already producing fitness-oriented wearable gadgets, though none has become dominant so far. Nike is leading in the new market with its FuelBand brand. However, only a few new products have stirred the interest of buyers like Google Glass, an eyewear-looking headset that offers augmented reality images and some functionalities of a smartphone. Google Glass is expected to be released this year and has already been around for field testing.
Another popular wearable gadget called Pebble, a smartwatch, has gained huge following as a kickstarter by raking in about $8 million in donation. It is currently being shipped to its supporters as we speak.
An important question about the new wearable gadgets is: will there be a market or not for such products outside of the technophiles and company loyalists who will readily embrace the new product from their favorite company? Initial study finds out that the general public still needs how these gadgets work and why they should buy them. In other words, the potential customers need to know more information about them first.
An unscientific survey conducted by mobile website BuyVia revealed that 26 percent of the respondents said that they will buy the rumored product from Apple while 38 percent said that they were not interested in the rumored iWatch. More than a thrid of the respondents, the remaining 36 percent said that they are undecided whether or not to buy the new gadgets. The survey was rolled out before Samsung confirmed that it is also planning to make its own line of wearable gadgets.
The respondents also indicated the top five features of the new watch that should be present as the following: email and SMS, phone calls, GPS, wireless capability, and weather information.
BuyVia CEO Norman Fong noticed that while there customers are still unsure if they will buy the new smartwatch, the common features they are looking for are the common functionalities of iPhones.
“It’s as though consumers are only interested in a watch that offers everything the smartphone does, only in a more convenient ‘package.’ What they seem to crave is a way to more easily access iPhone features everywhere they go”, he said.