Samsung Electronics confirmed it is working on a smart watch which may rival a similar product that Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) is reportedly working on as the race to develop wearable computing devices heats up.
"We've been preparing the watch product for so long," Lee Young Hee, executive vice president of Samsung's mobile business, told Bloomberg. "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."
Lee declined to comment on what features the device would have, its cost or release date. However, according to a Reuters report, which cited an unnamed source with direct knowledge of the company's plans, Samsung's wristwatch-like device will perform many of the tasks of a smartphone.
Last month the New York Times and other outlets, including Bloomberg, reported that Apple is working on a smart watch device. Bloomberg reported that, according to unnamed sources, Apple has about 100 product designers working on a device that may perform similar functions to the iPhone and iPad.
"The race is on to redesign the mobile phone into something that you wear," NPD Group analyst Marshal Cohen told Bloomberg. "We're going to see formidable competition coming from many different directions--from device makers, accessory makers, even fashion designers."
Apple and Samsung are, in a sense, late comers to the wearable computing race. Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) Glass project got kicked off last year and the company is now inviting people to test out Glass, which is a wearable computing device users wear like glasses that displays information feeds and performs some functions of a smartphone. Google has said commercial versions of Glass should be available by the end of 2013; right now Glass is available for developers and testers for $1,500.
- see this Bloomberg article
- see this Reuters article
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