Apple has filed for an ‘iWatch’ trademark in Japan, according to Yahoo! Japan. This trademark filing is significant because Japan is the second known locale in which Apple has filed a trademark for its mythical future product. Last month, Apple applied for an ‘iWatch’ trademark in Russia. The Japanese trademark says the ‘iWatch’ mark refers to a “handheld computer” and “watch device.”
Does this second filing mean an iWatch is imminent? Probably not. It’s doubtful we’ll see an iWatch before 2014. What this trademark filing is probably doing is just reserving the mark for Apple. The company is obviously aware of all the speculation around its rumored watch device and likely wants to reserve the ‘iWatch’ name for itself so a competitor doesn’t claim it and start selling their own watch that consumers might mistake as Apple’s.