Another day, another iWatch rumor: Chinese site C Technology reported (Google Translation) that unspecified insider sources—presumably in Apple's supply chain—said that Apple will release the long-rumored iWatch in October of 2014. The report comes with caveats, however, as Apple has reportedly not settled on a screen size, and is struggling with the fight between battery life and battery size.
Right off the bat, this rumor needs to be considered with a big bag of salt on hand. First and foremost is the reality that Apple's supply chain knows next to nothing about Apple's release dates except at the very highest levels of Foxconn, Pegatron, and other final assemblers. Treat the October time line of this story as if it has been stored at the bottom of a long-forgotten diaper pail, because it stinks.
A Fun iWatch Mockup Published by C Technology
On the other hand, the report also said that Apple is currently testing two new batches of prototypes. That's the sort of thing with more substance, as the supply chain makes the prototypes.
The battery-related part of this story is also interesting. On the one hand, C Technology said that Apple is struggling with a 100 mAh battery, and the reasoning offered is that everyone knows Samsung's Galaxy Gear has a 315 mAh battery, and that device is way too big, while its battery life is way too short (25 hours of use).
Comparing Apple's power management capabilities to Samsung's is absurd, but it would be a major feat if Apple could wring more than a day's use out of such a small battery.
One way Apple may solve this, according to the rumor, is through wireless charging that would allow the device to charge up to one meter away from a charging station. Apple has filed for wireless-charging-related patents, so this is at least a possibility.
There is usually some heat lying behind supply-chain-sourced rumors, but the big thing to remember is that the supply chain doesn't have a 10,000 foot view. It knows only the part of the picture that Apple assigns to individual component makers, and it isn't privy to high-level strategies.
That said, this is the kind of rumor that tells me things are heating up with Apple's iWatch, and that the company is moving forward with the device.