Analyst: Apple iWatch could be $6 billion business

Analyst: Apple iWatch could be $6 billion business
According to Citicorp analyst Oliver Chen, the rumored Apple iWatch could produce some very profitable numbers for Apple. Chen expects the Cupertino based company to snag 10% of the $60 billion world-wide watch industry and he says that it could be big if Apple were to "create something totally new like they did with the iPod -- something consumers didn’t even know they needed." According to those with inside information of the device, features being considered for the iWatch include an ability to make and take calls, offer some type of mapping capabilities and count steps like a pedometer. It will also be designed to monitor a person's health through data like heart rate.

Apple is said to have 100 engineers working on the project and has filed at least 79 patents that include the word "wrist". A recently discovered patent application revealed that Apple has considered building some type of device for the wrist that uses a flexible screen, powered by solar and kinetic energy.

This isn't the first time that a tech company tried to get into the watch business. In 2003, Microsoft teamed with watchmakers Citizen Watch Co. and Fossil to build a watch that would deliver sports scores, weather and traffic reports. By 2008, the team had dissolved. But now, the watch business is booming with companies like Fossil and Movado Group Inc enjoying margins in excess of 55% That makes it a perfect time for Apple to show that it still knows a thing or two about innovation.

While an iWatch might sound like a great idea for Apple, there is a device that could offer competition even if it is not another watch. Google has Google Glass that will apparently hit the market by the end of this year although there is no indication that the two are mutually exclusive of each other.

source: Bloomberg

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