Apple Watch: What We Know So Far
Apple CEO Tim Cook is expected to unveil the Apple Watch, the company's newest device at a San Francisco event later Monday, and will try to convince everyone to buy it. Apple teased the smartwatch in September but has given few details. First of all, the wearable device is scheduled to hit the market in April.
Apple hopes that the new device will appeal not only as a gadget but as a fashion statement, and ppans to launch its advertising campaign with a 12-page insert in the March issue of Vogue.
The company is also expected to try to to keep a tight grip on initial sales and distribution, by possibly restricting initial sales to its own stores only, where Apple has complete control over the experience.
Media outlets have also posited that the watch will be offered at stores installed at luxury retailers around the world.
The Apple Watch woll offer internet to your wrist. It will show email, texts and phone calls, news, health readings and other notifications. They will be customized for the watch, so you won't simply see what's on the phone.
An accelerometer will count steps you take, and an internal motor can signal you with a subtle "tap" on the wrist. There's also a heart monitor; NFC wireless technology will to allow you to pay-with-a-tap through Apple Pay at participating stores.
Apple knows that app selection is critical to the gadget's success, so it's been working with developers from companies including BMW, Facebook and United to have apps ready right out of the box. In September, the company said several apps are in development.
The watch likely will need to be recharged nightly, just like the phone. Some fitness trackers can last for days without a recharge, but full-featured smartwatches typically last a day or two at most.
One thing that sets Apple Watch apart is the control you'll get by turning the dial, known as the digital crown. Many rival smartwatches have buttons that do little more than turn on the screen and make menu selections. With Apple Watch, you'll be able to turn the crown to zoom in and out. You can get a closer view of a map that way, for instance.
When the watch with a rectangular touchscreen was first shown in September, Apple said it would come in two sizes and three styles. Apple has said that prices will start at $349. The next price point might be $550 and then $950, if the company chooses to follow a stair-step approach similar to iPhone and iPad pricing. Others see the high-end Apple Watch Edition - which is made with 18-karat gold that Apple promises to be twice as hard as "standard" gold and a display with polished sapphire crystal - could cost way more.
Beyond the Watch, today's event may also answer to some of the most interesting speculations circulating online lately. Whether it's gonna be aa new Apple TV streaming device (part of HBO's stand-alone subscription service?), a streaming music service integrated into iTunes, Apple's CarPlay evolution of even a larger iPad remain to be seen.