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Microsoft reportedly working on smartwatch

Microsoft plans to weigh into the wearable computing market with a smartwatch, Forbes reported Thursday.

SAN FRANCISCO: Microsoft plans to weigh into the wearable computing market with a smartwatch, Forbes reported Thursday.

The US technology titan tapped into talent behind its gesture-sensing Kinect accessory for Xbox video game consoles to help make a sensor-loaded smartwatch, according to Forbes.

Smartwatch capabilities were said to include fitness features such as measuring and tracking heart rates.

Like the growing array of "wearable computing" devices, Microsoft's creation will be designed to synch wirelessly to applications in smartphones, Forbes said.

Last month, market tracker IDC predicted sales of wearable tech items would triple this year to 19 million units worldwide, growing to 111.9 million by 2018.

IDC said the wearable sector is still led by fitness trackers such as Jawbone UP and Fitbit devices.

"The increased buzz has prompted more vendors to announce their intentions to enter this market," IDC research manager Ramon Llamas said in a statement released with the forecast.

"Most importantly, end users have warmed to their simplicity in terms of design and functionality, making their value easy to understand and use."

Apple is also rumored to be working on an "iWatch," although the iPod, iPad, iPhone and Macintosh computer maker has not commented on that.

Google, meanwhile, recently opened its Glass "explorer" program to anyone in the United States with $1,500 to spend on the Internet-connected eyewear.

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