After months of speculation, the Apple Watch finally has a release date, Forbes can reveal. According to the report, chief executive officer Tim Cook confirmed that the Apple device will be ready to ship this April, and that everything is “right on schedule.”
Cook has already expressed his excitement about the device.
“My expectations are very high… I’m using it every day and love it and can’t live without it.”
The Apple Watch was announced in September of 2014 with the release date estimated to be sometime “early 2015.” Further rumors suggested the smartwatch would be coming to stores this March, and that around 2.8 million units were going to be shipped, according to analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.
The battery life for the Apple Watch is estimated to be around 2.5 hours with frequent use, which may be a concern for some people. However, head of research at CCS Insight, Ben Wood, believes the Apple device will be a success.
“Even if it only told the time, Apple is likely to sell millions of them with the first launch. Apple makes beautiful things and the Watch is beautifully engineered. Combined with its brand credentials it’s going to be a fashion statement and a status symbol with a much broader appeal than current smartwatches.”
The Apple Watch will provide users with — amongst the time — notifications and alerts, and will display calendar events, emails, weather reports, and stocks. It will also be compatible with many Apple apps, including Siri and Maps.
There will be a focus on fitness with a dashboard that will monitor physical activity. The Guardian website says the unit will feature a heart rate monitor and a fitness tracker, as well as a workout app for cardio sessions.
Apple Pay will be another major feature that will allow wearers to use the company’s own digital payment scheme for contactless transactions. According to Forbes, Apple Pay now makes up two-thirds of all contactless payments.
All functions will be controlled by the device’s Digital Crown, which is the dial situated on the side of the watch.
Apple’s new unit will aim to compete in the smartwatch market, and will sit alongside such popular devices as the Samsung Galaxy Gear and the Pebble Smartwatch.
The watch will also be available in three different versions: stainless steel, aluminum Watch Sport, and an 18c Gold Apple Watch Edition.
As well as the release date, the Apple Watch’s low-end price has also been revealed and is said to be $349 (around £230). No word has been revealed yet about the cost of higher end versions of the device.