*Update on 2/7/2013 12.54 pm: PhoneArena just reported that Apple has filed similar applications in Mexico and Taiwan.
Originally reported on 1/7/2013
Bloomberg just reported that Apple is applying a trademark for "iWatch" in Japan.
According to Bloomberg, Apple filed the application on 3rd June seeking protection for the name on products including a handheld computer or watch device. This raises speculation that the tech company is indeed working on a smartwatch. Apple is also reported to have filed a trademark application in Russia last month.
Apple CEO Tim Cook also hinted that his company is looking into wearable devices at the D11 Conference in May when he said that wearable devices is "an area that's ripe for exploration." He went on to say that "it's ripe for us to get excited about" as many companies will play in this space.
Sony recently announced its SmartWatch 2, which it claims to be the world's first smartwatch with NFC connectivity. The Japanese company also claims that the SmartWatch 2 has access to the largest database of apps designed for smartwatches.
Earlier this year, Bloomberg reported that Apple has assembled a team of 100 to work on a wristwatch-like device. The team is said to consist of managers, marketing group members, software and hardware engineers.