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Apple’s iWatch unlikely to launch till late 2014, analyst claims

Apple iWatch

Apple fans with a space on their wrist marked ‘reserved for iWatch’ will be hoping to hear some positive news on the subject at the company’s Worldwide Developers Conference next month. A research report on Wednesday, however, suggests no smartwatch-related announcement will be forthcoming. In fact, it appears that the so-called iWatch – which, incidentally, is a product about which Apple has offered no official word – may not hit stores until late 2014.

KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, a man who’s called it right on several occasions in the past regarding Apple’s product plans, says that hardware and software issues mean the wearable tech may not see the light of day until the latter half of next year. Reports up to now had suggested the high-tech watch might hit stores later this year.

In a research report issued this week (via MacRumors), Kuo said the Cupertino company “may not have adequate resources to develop an iWatch version of iOS” because of the time and effort being spent on revamping iOS 7 for existing iDevices.

He added that components for wearable devices aren’t yet mature, pushing mass production of the iWatch into late next year.

Kuo also believes the device will comprise a 1.5- to 2-inch display and incorporate tech from Apple’s iPod Nano media player.

“Currently, the iPod Nano uses the same GF2 touch technology as used by the iPad Mini,” Kuo said. “Since the size and computing ability requirements of the iWatch are similar to those of the iPod Nano, we think iWatch will use iPod Nano’s GF2 touch technology and AP [application processor].”

Finally, the KGI Securities analyst claims the iWatch will make use of biometric technology, aiding security and paving the way for health-focused apps.

Although there’s been no official word from Apple about the iWatch – if indeed that’s what it decides to call it – a Bloomberg report a couple of months ago citing two people familiar with the tech company’s plans said Apple was “beyond the experimentation phase in its development”.

The report said a team of around 100 product designers is currently working on a futuristic wristwatch “that may perform some of the computing tasks now handled by the iPhone and iPad.”

Kuo’s claim that the watch won’t hit stores till late next year will certainly be of interest to major rival Samsung, which has already admitted to prepping a smartwatch. A date for the release of its device hasn’t been set, but you can bet the Korean tech giant will be doing all it can to get its offering on the market before Apple unveils its own competing product.