Apple has filed new patent applications detailing how a modular approach could bring numerous extra accessories and capabilities to the Apple Watch.
Essentially, the concept is to connect additional devices to the smartwatch face via its diagnostics port, where a wristband normally attaches. The approach would allow multiple additional devices to be affixed to the Apple Watch, syncing with its processor to enable new functionality. Describing the potential attachable modules, AppleInsider lists “batteries, displays, processors, electricity generators, GPS sensors, cameras, thermometers, blood pressure sensors, sweat sensors and speakers.”
This essentially brings Apple’s approach to smartwatch fashion to the realm of devices: While the company has striven to appeal to the luxury fashion market with attachable designer wristbands, now it can further target the consumer electronics market with attachable devices.
The great risk for consumers, of course, is that any such attachable devices won’t be compatible with the next version of the Apple Watch, rendering their peripherals obsolete when they upgrade their core gear. On the other hand, Apple may fully embrace the modular approach by allowing interoperability between all attachable devices, including new version of the Apple Watch itself. It’s too early to say—right now these patents are pending approval, and Apple has made no official announcements about these kinds of peripherals as of yet.