Android could be landing on wrists in its latest incarnation as a smartwatch in just two weeks.
According to reports, Google is planning a 31 October release of its eagerly awaited wrist-computer at the same time as the release of version 4.4 of its Android operating system – KitKat.
The watch is to be called Nexus, following Google's preferred naming convention for its own flavour of phones and tablets.
The claim comes from Android Police blogger Artem Russakovskii on Google+. Russakovski posted:
Google will announce a Nexus watch, codenamed Gem, likely together with the KitKat announcement. The date I have, which, once again, is about a month old, is also October 31st.
Features rumoured to be coming in KitKat are a Google Home app, which might serve as a one-stop destination for all Google apps, and Google Experience, which will launch apps outside of KitKat.
Just to add some balance to the rumour mill, others have wrongly pegged the launch of KitKat as 14 October (yesterday at the time of publication) or as 15 October. Reports have also said the new Nexus 5 phone is coming at the same time.
Apple's rumoured smartwatch is still nowhere to be seen and there are no dates for when one may go on sale. One thing is for sure: the facts might be scant, but the frenetic pace of rumours reflects consumers' insatiable appetite for new products.
It's something Microsoft should bear in mind as it leads up to next week's second-act Surface tablet launch and as it once again claims it is a consumer device maker.
The company launched Windows-powered smartwatches in 2004 from a variety of manufacturers.
These were micro computers on your wrist connected to services such as weather and stock updates via FM radio signals over the MSN Direct network. In classic Microsoft style, the idea remained peripheral and the focus was the Windows computer – in this case, the watch – rather than the network or the online services.
Watchmakers stopped making the watches in 2008 and the network was turned off in January last year. ®