Apple Employees to Get 50% off Apple Watch

Apple CEO Tim Cook has told his employees that they will be eligible to receive 50% off the wearable tech when it goes on sale late this month. The devices can be tried on by customers from this Friday. 1000+ apps have now been submitted for the device, with Cook sending a memo to his staff to thank them for helping make the Watch a reality.

Sharing the Experience

The Watch is to be officially launched on Friday April 24th. Try-ons are to begin in over 400 Apple Stores this week. Apple employees will receive 50% off the aluminium sport and stainless steel models as well as $550 off the gold Edition. Staffs weren’t immediately given a discount on the iPad, though some employees were given the iPhone for free. The employees will be able to take advantage of the deal for 90 days beginning on Friday. Cook told staff that he wanted them to be able to share the experience with customers.

1,000 Apps Submitted in Four Days

Cook said that more than 1,000 apps were submitted in a four day period last week, with the rate of submissions rising since them. Apps have been previewed on the Apple website as well as at March’s Apple Watch keynote presentation. Cook has called the Watch the “most personal product yet”. The Watch has recently made what is thought to be its first public appearance, after Pharrell Williams was seen wearing the stainless steel white sport band version whilst appearing on the US version of The Voice. The device is being marketed as both a fitness accessory and a fashion statement.

A Wide Range of Prices

Three editions of the Apple Watch will be made available: the Apple Watch, Watch Sport and Watch Edition. The stainless steel Apple Watch will come with a sapphire crystal Retina display and a ceramic back, with the Watch Sport being made from 7000 Series Silver Aluminium with Ion-X Glass and a Retina display. The Apple Watch Edition comes in 18-Karat Rose Gold and Yellow Gold. The exclusive, high-end Watch Edition will start at £8,000, though the Apple Watch is to begin at £479. The Watch Sport will cost £299 or £339, depending on face size.

18 Hours of Power?

The Watch will be able to sense force, with Apple claiming to have ‘reinvented all-new ways to select navigate and input that are suited to a smaller device worn on the wrist’. Apple also claim that the watch will offer 18 hours of battery life from a single charge. The Watch features a ‘digital crown’ which will be used to magnify content and scroll. It will come with a Glance feature showing information relevant to users. This has been compared to Google Now and will offer glimpses of things like news, weather forecasts and details about location. Users will also be able to control music being played on their iPhones via the Watch. The Watch will be able to detect heart rate, with any notification appearing on a connected phone also appearing on the Watch.

Targeting Athletes

The Watch will feature a heart rate sensor as well as an accelerometer, GPS and Wi-FI of a connected iPhone in order to measure information including steps, distance and calories. It will offer wireless charging when a connector is placed near the back of the watch. The Watch will also be able to open certain car and front doors. Users will be able to make payments via the Watch, which comes pre-loaded with Apple Pay as well as send hands-free messages. In an attempt to defeat the competition, Apple removed fitness bands made by other companies from its stores last week, meaning that activity-tracking devices like the Jawbone Up and Nike+ FuelBand are no longer being sold by the company. The company have just released a series of “Guided Tour” videos offering an extra insight into what the Watch can do.

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