Implications of a device like the rumored Apple ‘iWatch’

Lately there have been rumours going around about a new product being prepared in the secret labs of Apple’s headquarter. This product has been dubbed as ‘iWatch’ on numerous rumor sites. Until recently these articles would go accompanied with mock ups of a rather conventional: a wrist band with on top a sort of mini iPhone-like screen.

Until a few days ago it became clear that Apple probably had more advanced plans and had patented a technology in 2011 that would contain a continuous display experience on such a device.

Apple's patent continious display device

That would of course open up a whole new range of possibilities that wouldn’t need to be restricted to a watch but could be applied to all kinds of devices, like jewelry and cards. How would that for example work if a company released its own ‘iBracelet’ ?

I stumbled on this video from 3M that gives some indication how a device with a continious display could be used.

I think the video is a bit restricted to the current paradigm that such a device should give you a stream of applications and serve as an alternative input device for your smartphone or tablet. Of course that could be a way of application, but the possibilities could go far beyond that. First of all a device with a continuous display screen would not necessarily be restricted to a wrist band, but it could take any shape: for example a bracelet or a credit card like format (or any of the other examples presented in the video).

You could have a possible application to use such a device solely as a way of fashion accesory where a certain pattern could be applied to the surface, for example emulating a golden brace or tiger print with in the middle the display of a clock.

Another way of applying functionality to such a device would be to display on the device information that could be used to grant access to objects like buildings or sites. The device could in such a case display information that is unique to the person carrying the device.

Of course it could serve the possibilities mentioned above in a combined way, for example beng an accesory in a ‘quiet state’ and become an input device in case where the device is being activated by its owner.