Apple Gets Patent for Its Smartwatch

October 15, 2014

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. fray /freɪ/ (n.) – a competition or rivalry between products
Example: Samsung has been ahead of the smartphone fray in the past years.

2. patent /ˈpæt nt/ (n.) – license and approval given to recognize a product’s originality
Example: Apple filed a patent for its future phones.

3. modular /ˈmɒdʒ ə lər/ (adj.) – having composed of separate parts or units
ExampleModular laptops offer more portability.

4. all-in-one /ɔl ɪn wʌn/ (adj.) – having different functions in one product
Example: Many consumers prefer all-in-one gadgets to save money.

5. version /ˈvɜr ʒən/ (n.) – a particular model or unit of a known device or characteristic
Example: The company released its version of a five-inch screened smartphone.


Read the text below.
Apple is set to join the fray for smartwatch dominance after the US Patent and Trademark Office granted the patent for the brand’s design.

The device, tentatively called as “iTime” or “iWatch,” emphasizes Apple’s wristband rather than the functions of the hardware attached. The wristband alone will have purposes other than holding the gadget. 

Electronic circuitry [SUR-ki-tree] is confirmed to be present in the wristband, which serves as the base of the device. In one version, the hardware is part of the wristband. In another, the gadget is removable.

Varied functions are expected from the product. So far, the main highlight of the design is its modular structure. Experts think that Apple’s plan opens up flexibility for the device.

Instead of launching an all-in-one gadget, users will have the chance to customize their iTime or iWatch by switching devices on the wristband. The gadget’s battery life can also be managed much easier with the modular structure.

Other brands like Samsung and LG have already released their smartwatch months ago while Apple is yet to release its version this fall or by November 2014.

The design patent was filed in July 2011 and was approved in July 2014. iTime or iWatch will serve as a key product release for the current Apple CEO Tim Cook. This device marks his first launching of a new Apple gadget since previous releases were just upgrades of products initially released under Apple co-founder Steve Jobs.

*[UPDATE]: "iWatch" is now officially named as "Apple Watch."

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A

·         Do you think Apple’s smartwatch will be a hit? Why or why not?
·         What do you think are the benefits of using smartwatches? Kindly discuss.

Discussion B

·         How does the brand affect the popularity of a new gadget?
·         What do you think are the advantages of having the latest technologies? Kindly discuss.

October 15, 2014