The Apple Watch will be available on April 24 and will last 18 hours on a single charge. "The Apple Watch is the most advanced timepiece ever created," said Apple CEO Tim Cook on Monday at the company's event in San Francisco. One of Apple's biggest challenges will be convincing people to spend a minimum of $349 for a device that needs to be paired with an iPhone to perform functions like reading or sending a message. The Apple Watch is controlled by swiping the touchscreen or turning the "digital crown" on the side, which can be used to scroll, zoom or return to the home screen. The device doesn't have a keyboard — instead, people can send simple, pre-written messages, dictate to Siri, take phone calls, or even send their heartbeat by pressing two fingers down on the touchscreen. It will also feature Apple Pay to let people make purchases by swiping their watch at stores. Third-party apps will let users do things like summon a car from Uber or unlock their W Hotel door without taking out their iPhones.
The company is pushing the Apple Watch as a fitness tracker, thanks to a variety of health apps and the watch's heart rate sensor, accelerometer and GPS. "It's like having having a coach on your wrist," Cook said. The Apple Watch will come in two sizes, 38 millimeters and 42 millimeters, and six different materials including stainless steel, silver aluminum and 18-karat yellow gold. There will also be six different bands, ranging from a leather strap to a stainless steel Milanese loop to a bright sport band. Overall, there are 34 combinations available, which will range in price from $349 to more than $10,000. The watch will be available to try on in Apple Stores on April 10, when it will also be available for pre-order.
— Keith Wagstaff