Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s rumored iWatch may be released this year, according to Bloomberg.

Apple iwatch

Bloomberg reported that the much anticipated wristwatch-styled smart device, designed and manufactured by Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), could be launched in the market anytime this year and may prove very profitable for Apple.

Earlier this year, a report by Bloomberg revealed that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) had a 100 person team working on a wristwatch-like device – dubbed the iWatch. The wire service now pegs the iWatch release date for somewhere in 2013.

“This can be a $6 billion opportunity for Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), with plenty of opportunity for upside if they create something totally new like they did with the iPod — something consumers didn’t even know they needed,” said Citigroup Inc. analyst Oliver Chen to Bloomberg.

Earlier this year, Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster predicted Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) would enter the wearable computer market with a wristwatch that would be an iPhone companion.

As far as iWatch features and specs, Bloomberg writes; “Features under consideration include letting users make calls, see the identity of incoming callers and check map coordinates, said one of the people, who asked not to be identified because the plans aren’t public. It would also house a pedometer for counting steps and sensors for monitoring health-related data, such as heart rates, this person said.”

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) has also filed 79 patents containing the word ‘wrist’, with one of them talking about a “wearable accessory device” that would display video. More patents showing an iWatch-like device continue to pop up.