Tim Cook at D11: Wearables Are 'Incredibly Interesting', Nothing Great on the Market

At this year's annual All Things Digital conference hosted by AllThingsD, Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher asked Apple CEO Tim Cook about wearable devices, such as Apple's much rumored smart watch, which has been dubbed the "iWatch."

Tim Cook mentioned that he found wearables to be "incredibly interesting" and went on to say that it could be a "profound area." Cook himself is equipped with a Nike Fuelband, but believes that there's nothing "great" on the market, and that wearables are an area "ripe for exploration."

pebblesmartwatch

The Pebble smart watch

Of course, when pressed on whether Apple will be developing a wearable device, Cook declined to answer, though he did hint that it was an important area of potential development, and that while both glasses and watches had drawbacks, the wrist was "natural."

There's nothing that's going to convince a kid who has never worn glasses or a band or a watch or whatever to wear one. Or at least I haven't seen it. So I think there's lots of things to solve in this space, but it's an area where it's ripe for exploration, it's ripe for us all getting excited about. I think there will be tons of companies playing in this.

I see it as another very key branch of the tree.

I think from a mainstream point of view [glasses] are difficult to see. I think the wrist is interesting. I'm wearing this (Nike Fuelband) on my wrist, it's somewhat natural. But as I said before, I think for something to work here, you first have to convince people it's so incredible that they want to wear it.

With the growing popularity of smart watches like the Pebble, the Jawbone UP, and the Nike Fuelband, rumors about Apple’s own smart watch have ramped up in recent months. Most recently, reliable KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo predicted that Apple's rumored iWatch will debut in the second half of 2014.


The watch, which will integrate with Apple's existing mobile lineup, is expected to feature a 1.5–2.0 inch display. The New York Times has suggested that Apple is experimenting with curved glass, and according to a February report from Bloomberg, Apple has a team of 100 product designers working on the smart watch.

MacRumors has full coverage of the interview with more of Tim Cook’s comments on the iWatch.

Related Roundup: Apple Watch Series 9
Buyer's Guide: Apple Watch (Caution)

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Top Rated Comments

GREEN4U Avatar
144 months ago
Who wears a navy jacket with a black dress shirt? This guy is nuts. :mad:
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
kas23 Avatar
144 months ago
He's right about the glasses. People who've never worn glasses before are certainly not going to jump at the opportunity.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
macse30 Avatar
144 months ago
"Nothing great." Translation: "We won't acknowledge great work done by a much smaller company that has delivered a product while we sit around and talk about "incredibly interesting profound areas."

I've had my Pebble for weeks and absolutely love it. I received my Boombot REX bluetooth speaker today (another Kickstarter). Holy ***** it is fun. The REX has great sound. I can control the playlist from my Pebble for music streaming on the REX. I can use Siri on the REX and use it for speakerphone.

Both pair up really well to my 4S at the same time. Hey Tim Cook, "incredibly interesting" just arrived and it's great. Check it out sometime.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
AppleMark Avatar
144 months ago
None of us know if this market for "wearables" has any potential for huge profit, but I can most certainly bet Apple will jump on if it expands. I just hope that they will be one of the first - if not the first to introduce such technology.

The only problem is that Apple seems to be afraid to do anything really. They're afraid of risk.

I did not hear that from the interview.

I only heard Tim Cook talking positively about TV and Watches. The fact that he was unprepared to go into details and say "yes we are going to make a watch" does not translate to being afraid.

Apple were not first with MP3, tablets or even computers. This should tell you everything you need to know....
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
maxosx Avatar
144 months ago
How boring. Borrowing a page from Steve Jobs, Cook bashes other's products, so as to make Apple look good when they pump out iWatches by the millions.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
diazj3 Avatar
144 months ago
Pebble should register patents for their watch - all of it, as SJ would say - and then drag Apple through endless lawsuits. Including the way it fits on the wrist and the bands to hold it. :D

Perhaps that'll bring more innovating engineers instead of patent trolling lawyers to Apple.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)