Apple’s Tim Cook thinks the best place for wearable tech is the wrist

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Apple logo

Ever wondered why the most likely rumors surrounding Apple and wearable tech have focused on a potential smartwatch? If that’s the direction it chooses to go in, it won’t be because Google got the jump on smart glasses (the smartwatch scene is already pretty crowded). More likely is that it’s because the company thinks the wrist is the best place for wearable tech.

Speaking at AllThingsD’s D11 conference, Apple CEO Tim Cook said that he thinks wearable tech is “ripe for exploration”, but only if companies come up with compelling solutions.

The most compelling of those solutions, in Cook’s mind at least, are from companies who’ve built tech designed for the wrist. Cook himself appeared on stage wearing a Nike FuelBand and appears to be fan of the device. “I think Nike did a great job with this,” he said, adding that the devices that do one thing well tend to be better than those that try to do a number of things.

Cook also thinks that the human wrist just makes more sense for smart devices than anywhere else on the human body.

“The wrist is interesting,” he said, noting that it is more natural. “You still have to convince people it is worth wearing.”

That might go some way to explaining why Cook is down on the idea of smart glasses. He reckons that while the technology could be readily adopted by people who already wear glasses, those who don’t might not be so keen. “I don’t know a lot of people that wear them that don’t have to,” he said.

Speaking about Google Glass in particular, Cook believes that it won’t have mass market appeal. “It’s probably more likely to appeal to certain markets,” he said.

That said, he thinks that making predictions on wearable tech at this stage is a little difficult because of how young the whole field is.

“The whole sensor field is going to explode,” he said. “It’s a little all over the place right now. With the arc of time, it will become clearer.”

One thing Cook wouldn’t offer up was confirmation that Apple is working on any wearable tech of its own.

“I don’t want to answer that one,” Cook said when asked if the Cupertino giant would be playing in the space.



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