Following months of reports about Apple’s upcoming foray into wearable electronics, the company is now seeking to trademark "iWatch" in Japan, reports Bloomberg. Many are convinced that Apple is working on a smartwatch product, but so far Cupertino has kept more or less quiet — save for Tim Cook’s statement about the "profound" opportunity in wearables at the D11 conference in May. Apple has also filed for the "iWatch" mark in Russia, Izvestia reported last month.
Of course, merely applying for a trademark doesn’t cement either Apple’s plans or the name of any forthcoming products. The company has been known to trademark plausible names for future products, like 2009’s iSlate application, as well as ideas it's more loosely tied to, such as 1988's Knowledge Navigator. But whether Apple intends to bring something to market wearing the iWatch brand or is merely trying to block competitors from appropriating it, it’s doing what it can to lay claim to the name.
Update: Add Mexico to the list. 9to5Mac reports that Apple has filed a trademark application for "iWatch" with the country's Institute of Industrial Property. MacRumors writes that Apple has also applied for an "iWatch" trademark in Taiwan. Additional countries are being added by the day.