Is Apple Getting Scooped?

Though rumors swirl regarding a much-anticipated Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL  ) iWatch, Samsung will not only beat its Cupertino brethren to market, it may also upstage an iPhone announcement that is expected on Sept. 10. While it is hard to imagine any news that could fully distract an adoring public from the next-generation iPhone, the Samsung Galaxy Gear may have the recipe to cast a long shadow over the Apple release. With Apple shares closing over $500 per share in months, investors must be concerned that the company not lose forward momentum.

Wearable comes to your wrist
Last Friday, Bloomberg reported that Samsung is expected to announce the launch of its Galaxy Gear Android-powered smart watch on Sept. 4. This confirms earlier reports from various smaller tech sites, giving credence to the news. The new wearable is expected to allow you to surf the web, check emails and texts, and even make phone calls. It will probably sync with your smartphone for added functionality.

The news is another blow to Apple's efforts on the rumored iWatch. Over a month ago, Financial Times reported that the company had begun a hiring surge surrounding concerns that Apple's technology might be as much as a year away. While the rumors continue to abound, it seems unlikely to me that Apple will be the first to market.

The Apple way
I'm sure Apple fans would correctly point out that the company's expertise is not in being first -- it's in being best. The iPod was not the first device of its kind on the market, but -- particularly with the integration of iTunes and the birth of the ecosystem -- the iPod was the best digital music player and changed the conversation.

Similarly, the iPhone was not the first smartphone on the market. That distinction went to BlackBerry, which was the veritable leader for years. While you could easily argue that the iPhone beat the BlackBerry because it kept evolving, while the BlackBerry did not, Apple still claimed the top spot in a market that was controlled by an 800-pound gorilla.

Finally, the iPad was not the first tablet on the market. There were a handful of clunky, hard-to-use alternatives before Apple's clean design made tablets a market segment that mattered. The message here is that Apple does not need to be first -- and rarely is -- on its way to being best. Still, with shares seeming to finally be on the right path, being upstaged may be a blow.

Timing isn't everything
While the Samsung news is certainly noteworthy, underestimating Apple would be a mistake. Apple is known for doing things when and how it wants, so don't expect to see much reaction from Cupertino surrounding the release of Galaxy Gear. When the dust settles, I expect Apple will deliver the quality and design that we have come to expect from the leader in personal electronics. Apple may be the second to market with a smart watch, but scooped is too harsh. In the meantime, look for a solid new iPhone release to help the stock continue higher from here.

Along these same lines, Apple has a history of cranking out revolutionary products... and then creatively destroying them with something better. Read about the future of Apple in the free report, "Apple Will Destroy Its Greatest Product." Can Apple really disrupt its own iPhones and iPads? Find out by clicking here.

Read/Post Comments (6) | Recommend This Article (12)

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  • Report this Comment On August 19, 2013, at 10:22 PM, Cuftbll wrote:

    So if Apple users have a 94% retention rate and Samsung users are more interested in cheap phones and free apps. Stats don't lie! Who is going to buy this watch? Who is the customer? Apple will sit back and watch as Pebble, Sony, and now Samsung flop with a watch. Apple's wearable device won't be a watch! It may tell time and it may fit on the rest but won't look like a watch or act like a watch.

    Yo Samsung. I hear you might be in the market for some gold paint very soon. Hahaha!

  • Report this Comment On August 19, 2013, at 11:06 PM, MrSmith210 wrote:

    Lol. Nice Cuft.

  • Report this Comment On August 20, 2013, at 3:57 AM, fauxscot wrote:

    The internet has replaced the newspaper... as lining for a bird cage.

    You don't have a single piece of reality in this post, just a bunch of suppositions. Guesses about guesses and conclusions from a universe that does not yet exist.

    It is quite possible that the sky will rain meteors and kill off Samsung management, too. Why not a story on that?

    What is with you guys? You really need a new Motley Fool section called "Breathless Headlines PANIC APPLE!!!!!" This article qualifies. You should really be ashamed to put a name on it.

  • Report this Comment On August 20, 2013, at 7:33 AM, jdmeck wrote:

    Samsung watch... no an Apple problem. People are going to buy or not buy based on operating system. It's an ad on product, not an introduction product.

  • Report this Comment On August 20, 2013, at 9:15 AM, drax7 wrote:

    Samsung is trying to negate the existence of Steve jobs, samsung created everything and Steve just copied them. Who can buy that lie and wear it is not to cool.

  • Report this Comment On August 20, 2013, at 11:20 PM, mountain8 wrote:


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