Apple is actively hunting new design talent for iWatch project – reports

15 Jul 2013

iPod nano devices transformed into wristwatches, thanks to silicone-based bands made by Hex

Apple is reportedly on an aggressive hiring hunt for talent outside of the company to come up with solutions to design issues around its iWatch wrist computer – potentially the first new product that could be spawned from the consumer tech giant since the death of co-founder and former CEO Steve Jobs in 2011.

The Financial Times reports today that Apple has set out on a “hiring spree” to bring in new engineering talent to work on, and solve, design issues with iWatch.

Apple started “aggressively” hiring people for iWatch in recent weeks, The Financial Times claims. It cited its sources as people who are “familiar” with Apple’s goals for the wearable device.

In February, reported how Apple was understood to have deployed 100 product designers to develop the wrist watch computer that interacts with other iOS devices, such the iPhone, iPad and iPod.

At the time reports were circulating that Apple had put its senior director of engineering James Foster and another manager called Achim Panfoerder in charge of its latest product-design job.

And just last week, we reported on Apple’s globe-trotting tour of ‘iWatch’ trademark filings.

This kicked off with a Japanese filing. Following that, trademark requests from Apple were uncovered in Mexico, Taiwan, Russia, Turkey, Colombia and Chile.

But just how long is this geek-chic product away from hitting Apple and re-seller stores? According to The Financial Times today, it seems Apple lovers could be in for a wait of over a year or more.

Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak has already indicated connected wearable devices will be the next big thing in tech.

Sony SmartWatch 2

Sony SmartWatch 2

As for the tech competition, Samsung has already confirmed it is developing a smartwatch. Google is also rumoured to be pursuing a smartphone-connected wristwatch. Meanwhile Sony has just announced its second generation Android-based SmartWatch 2 will be hitting the shelves in September.

Carmel Doyle was a long-time reporter with Silicon Republic