The rumors surrounding Apple’s wearable have been flowing for most of 2014, but today they can finally come to an end, because the Apple Watch is official.
Yep, that’s it’s name: Apple Watch. The device will be available in two case sizes (38mm and 42mm) and Apple Watch (stainless steel or stainless space black), Apple Watch Sport (anodized silver or space gray) or Apple Watch Edition (18 karat gold) variants. Users will also be able to select from a variety of bands, including leather and metal options.
The Apple Watch features a flexible Retina touch display that’s laminated to sapphire crystal. It’s also got a Digital Crown on its side that lets users magnify content on the display, scroll through lists and make selections.
On the software side of things, the Apple Watch will run apps from Apple and third parties. Users can swipe up from the bottom of the display to activate Glances, which will show different apps like music controls, location and weather info that can be swiped through horizontally. You can also receive notifications from apps, and when you do, you’ll get a “tactic” alert from your watch. You can then lift your wrist to view the notification.
Notifications can be acted on when you view them. For example, you can accept or decline calendar invitations and respond to messages. When you want to send a message, Apple will offer several pre-written responses. You can dictate a message using your voice or respond with emojis as well.
Apple also made note of its two fitness-focused apps, known as Fitness and Workout. Fitness will track your general movement and activity, while Workout will allow you to set goals for specific activities like biking or running.
By now you’re probably wondering how to charge the Apple Watch. Apple says that its watch uses inductive charging with a magnet that attaches to its backside, similar to the MagSafe adapter used with MacBooks. Unfortunately, Apple didn’t offer up any details on how long we can expect the Apple Watch’s battery to last on a single charge.
The Apple Watch will launch in “early 2015” with a starting price of $349. Apple says that you’ll need an iPhone to pair with the Apple Watch, but the good news is that the wearable supports the iPhone 5, 5c and 5s in addition to the new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.