Apple’s big event went down Tuesday morning (Sept. 9) in Cupertino, Calif., and as expected, the tech giant introduces the long-rumored Apple Watch. CEO Tim Cook calls the device “the most personal device we’ve ever created,” merging the element of a health and fitness companion with customizable timepiece.
The Apple Watch’s key development is the Digital Crown. It allows users to scroll, zoom, and navigate without covering the display — one of the fundamental challenges of a touch screen watch. It also allows for content to be magnified, or the ability to scroll through lists and messages, and make selections without obstructing the screen.
It boasts a flexible Retina display laminated to a single crystal of sapphire, and is built from custom alloys of stainless steel, aluminum, and 18-karat gold. A variety of bands are available, from leather, metal or plastic, as well as a range of watch faces to allow each piece to be unique.
You can receive and send messages from your wrist, as well as send preset phrases, smart responses based on your conversation, audio messages, your location and even interactive emojis. Siri is also include, so you can dictate a message, check your calendar, find the nearest coffee shop, and Maps.
Two fitness apps are added to give a complete picture of your health. The Activity app monitors movement throughout the day, while the Workout app tracks dedicated workouts. A custom sensor measures intensity by tracking your heart rate, but can also be an accelerometer to measure body movement, while the GPS and Wi-Fi in your iPhone help track your distance.
The Apple Watch, however, requires either an iPhone 5, 5c, 5s, 6, or 6 Plus to work. It will be available in three versions — Apple Watch, Apple Watch Sport, and Apple Watch Edition — early next year, starting at $349 USD.