Report Claims iWatch Still in Testing, No Sept 9 Unveiling

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Apple's rumored iWatch is still in the engineering testing phase and hasn't made it to production testing yet, according to insider sources. The sources also say the iWatch won't make an appearance at Apple's September 9 media event.

Report claims no iWatch announcement next weekAccording to supply chain sources speaking with DigiTimes -- a news site with mixed success in deciphering Apple's product plans -- the iWatch is currently in the engineering verification testing phase, and hasn't made it to production testing yet. If so, design changes could still come, and it isn't likely the device will be available before the end of the year.

The report fits with KGI Securities analyst Ming Chi Kuo's expectation that Apple won't ship the iWatch this year because of production-related issues. He expects Apple will start selling the iWatch some time in 2015 instead.

The iWatch is a wearable device Apple is rumored to have been developing as a tool to track our health and fitness data through a series of sensors that can send data wirelessly to our iPhones. It'll support iOS 8's HealthKit platform and Health app and will likely add a new level of competition to the wearable fitness tracker market.

Ming Chi Kuo's prediction doesn't say Apple will keep the iWatch out of its media event next Tuesday, which is exactly what the DigiTimes sources are claiming. Those sources are also directly contradicting reports from other sources who said Apple will show off its wearable technology along side the iPhone 6 next week.

Sources speaking with both Re/code and Bloomberg claim Apple will introduce its wearable product next week, and those people most likely aren't from the supply chain. Considering the DigiTimes sources aren't in a position to have more than a very narrow view into Apple's workings, they are probably making conclusions on only a small piece of information. In contrast, the sources saying Apple will announce the iWatch, or some other wearable tech, are likely in a position to see the bigger picture.

What seems probable is that Apple will announce its wearable device next week, but won't ship anything until early next year. Announcing this far in advance won't hurt Apple's sales, and avoids unwanted leaks as various government approval documents surface over the next few months -- which is exactly what Apple did for the original iPhone introduction.

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This looks like a case where someone is trying to weave an entire tapestry from a single thread, and they're misinterpreting what little information they have. What's more likely is that Apple will introduce its wearable next week, but won't ship anything until late this year or some time in early 2015.

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Given that the iWatch has been mentioned in rumors for at least two years now, I find it hard to believe that Tim Cook—master of the supply chain—would not have it available for the upcoming holiday season. We’ll know in a week in any case.

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