Last week, we heard that Apple partner Foxconn was prepping its own smartwatch compatible with Cupertino's iPhone. However, it seems Apple's own plans for a smartwatch are moving swiftly along, as the company has apparently applied for an iWatch trademark in Japan and a number of other countries.
Reuters cites a patent official in reporting that Apple has applied for an iWatch trademark in Japan. The news outlet says Apple submitted the application almost a month ago, on June 3, but it wasn't made available on Japan's patent office website until June 27. Apple's not taking any chances on someone snagging the term for a similar device, as this trademark supposedly covers computers, computer peripherals and wristwatches. 9 to 5 Mac writes that Apple has also applied for trademarks in Russia, Mexico, as well as Taiwan, Turkey and Colombia.
There's been a ton of talk about Apple's supposed plans for a smartwatch in the last six months. In February, word got out about a patent filing detailing a wearable accessory that could be worn on the wrist or elsewhere on the body. Most interestingly, the patent said that this device would have a flexible display and would wrap around a limb in a slap bracelet-like fashion. In April, it emerged that Apple was looking for an engineer that specialized in flexible displays. But Apple is just one of many companies with smartwatches on the brain. Sony announced a new one earlier this week, and LG debuted its own wristwatch phone back in the summer of 2009. Even Motorola had Dick Tracy dreams.