If you somehow missed yesterday’s big news, Apple has finally revealed (in full) and demoed its first smart watch, the Apple Watch, in all its glory in San Francisco. Unsurprisingly, its all the things we already know: its beautiful, its functional and its premium (read: expensive). Price starts at $349, and goes all the way up and over $10,000 for those wanting a Gold version.
So, besides being a watch, what else can it do?
According to reports, the Apple Watch will act as a second screen for your iPhone. You can control it with a dedicated app on the smartphone connected via Bluetooth. You can also choose different watch faces, as well as receive calls, text and other notifications. And you can interact with it in two ways: Tap or swipe the screen/watch face, or you could use the Digital Crown.
The company claims the watch can last a day in a single charge. Battery life is rated to reach up to 18 hours of typical use, making nightly charging via its magnetic charging cable a necessity.
It’s like having a coach on your wrist
The back of the watch has an optical heart rate monitor, which logs the owner’s heart rate throughout the day and plugs directly into the Apple’s Health app. There’s also an accelerometer which monitors activity, and it even remind you to get up and walk around if it finds you sitting for an extended period of time.
“In addition to being a beautiful object, the Apple watch is the most advanced timepiece ever created. It’s a revolutionary way to connect to others; and it’s a comprehensive health and fitness companion.” said Apple chief Tim Cook.
It’s pricey, but at least you’ll have a nice watch
The Apple Watch comes in various configurations. It comes in three variants and in two case sizes of 38mm and 48mm. It doesn’t use standard watch straps, meaning it will use Apple’s proprietary straps and comes in different colors with varying degrees of customization.
The full pricing for the watches is as follows:
- Apple Watch Sport, 38mm: $349
- Apple Watch Sport, 42mm: $399
- Sapphire and steel Apple Watch 38mm: $549 – $1049, “depending on your selection of watch band”
- Sapphire and steel Apple Watch 42mm: $599 – $1099
- Gold Apple Watch Edition: starts at $10,000
Obviously, the Apple watch is a beautiful device. It looks great and the build quality seems up there with the iPhone 6. But in my opinion, it brings nothing new to the table. It does the same things current smart watches can do. Plus we all know the 18 hour battery life is a best case scenario estimate. Then there’s the price. The difference, though, may lie in the experience. And we all know its something Apple have mastered.
Now, I have no doubts that the company will sell a lot of Apple watches. They’ve done it with other products before (like the iPad), and we all know its going to happen again. If any company can make you believe that you need a smart watch, its Apple.
The Apple watch will be available on April 24 starting in the US, UK, Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong and Japan, with other countries to follow at a later date.
Images from The Guardian.