Bendable glass, more powerful mini-chips, and an Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) product line that appears to have stalled in an effort to create brand new products have fueled speculation that the massive consumer electronics company will release a smartphone wristwatch. That is speculation without fact — another reading of tea leaves.
This time around, the rumors have spread to the pages of The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, and from there to almost every news outlet in the world. Suppose such a product is no more than a fantasy. News about Apple’s future, the product of so much speculation, will have been miscalculated again.
Apple supposedly has been “building” a TV product for years. The TV could have its own screen, or be run on a set-top box, or could just be a collection of content, larger, perhaps than the ones Netflix Inc. (NASDAQ: NFLX) or Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) offer. Apple’s brand may be strong enough to carry the success of such a product into living rooms, which already are cluttered by dozens of gadgets. But Apple would be the last company into this market instead of the first, which it usually is. Despite the discussion of the Apple television product, though, there has not been one.
Other recent rumors about Apple products include an iPhone much less expensive than the current one. This one might be aimed at emerging markets, where the current iPhone model may be too expensive. Wall St. frets about the speculated product, because it may be so cheap that it would pinch Apple’s precious margins.
But the cheap iPhone was pushed off the front pages recently.
The New York Times offered some options for what an Apple watch might include. Apple offered no comment, which is hardly a surprise. The paper “reported”:
But the exploration of such a watch leaves open lots of exciting questions: If the company does release such a product, what would it look like? Would it include Siri, the voice assistant? Would it have a version of Apple’s map software, offering real-time directions to people walking down the street? Could it receive text messages? Could it monitor a user’s health or daily activity? How much will it cost?
These are exciting questions, but they are also bogus. Even The New York Times cannot afford to be without a long article on the product that may or may not exist. The speculation has appeared everywhere else, so the Times cannot be caught flat-footed.
Apple also has developed a flying car and a monitor which, when implanted in the brain, can follow every thought and emotion of every person who wears one. Without a doubt, those products will be released this year.