Microsoft and Apple
Microsoft Corp. is not letting up on Apple Inc., meaning that now between the two rivals it's a race against time. According to reliable sources, Microsoft is in the works on designs for a wrist watch that is touch-enabled. This comes just a few months after it was reported that Apple is carrying out experiments for a watch-like device whose working will be similar to that of a smartphone or a business contract mobile phone.
Recently, Microsoft came up with a surface tablet to offer competition to iPad and iPad mini by Apple and also capture a portion of the tablet market that is fast-growing. Now, the race for the tablet and smartphone markets domination appears to be expanding towards touch-enabled, wearable gadgets. It comes as no surprise that the same two brands are attempting to stake an early claim. What is left to be seen is whether it will be worth the effort.
Analysts feel that while a smart watch would appeal to early adopters and young consumers, the features would have to be more appealing for a wider market. A smartphone cannot be replaced by a smart watch even though the watch may be capable of making calls. The watch has a small screen that is likely to limit the viewing experience. For elderly people, it is particularly hard to read data on the watch. In order to convince customers to purchase extra devices in addition to tablets and smartphones, some really innovative applications have to be introduced.
In 2012, Sony launched a smart watch that is smartphone compatible going for 150. However, it received poor reviews since the device could not work without it having to be paired with a smartphone through Bluetooth. In addition, users found out that swiping fingers on the tiny screen was difficult. Earlier in 2013, the company released a software update that made the watch more user-friendly.
As for now, neither Apple nor Microsoft is planning to mass produce the watch, according to certain manufacturing partners in Asia. The two firms may want to use the relatively inexpensive and simple smart watch to institute brand loyalty among youthful users. The two tech companies and others probably want to make watches that are smartphone compatible focusing on communications, meaning that tablets will be used mainly for multimedia consumption. Hence, users will have no trouble carrying large-screen smartphones around.
In 2012, Apple became the most valuable public firm in history, after it broke a record set in December 1999 by Microsoft for market capitalization. As internet and technology stocks were flying high in the late1990s, Microsoft eclipsed giants like General Electrics and coca cola to become the most valuable company in the world. All in all, there is no love lost between Apple and Microsoft. Steve Jobs and Bill Gates have been obsessed with each other pretty much since the mid-70s. Then back in the 1980s, the obsession turned into a corporate one-upmanship. Microsoft was the dominant one most of the times, as evidenced by the 95 market share of the windows operating system.