Friday 20 April 2018

Apple Watch giveaway: Cork staff to get half price gadgets

Adrian Weckler

Adrian Weckler

Apple is to offer over 4,500 Cork-based Apple employees half-price Watch gadgets when the devices go on sale here later this month.

The move was signalled by Apple chief executive Tim Cook in a memo to staff.

Prices range from €400 to almost €20,000.

“I know that many of you have been looking forward to choosing an Apple Watch for yourselves, and we want to make it easy for you,” Cook said. “Starting Friday, in countries where the watch is available for pre-order, a special Employee Purchase Plan will offer a 50pc discount on any Apple Watch or Apple Watch Sport for your personal use.”

“As we introduce the watch in more countries, the special pricing for employees will be offered in those countries as well. Congratulations to everyone who has worked so hard for years to help this product reach our customers.”

Mr Cook also said that the Watch’s dedicated app store has seen over 1,000 apps in its first few days.

“More than one thousand apps were submitted in just four days last week when the App Store started accepting them, and the rate of submissions has only been climbing since then,” he said.

“Some of the most innovative developers in the world are working on new experiences designed specifically for Apple Watch.”

The Watch is Apple's new apps-based smartwatch that comes with a number of different bands and straps. It comes in two different sizes (38mm and 42mm) and three different versions (aluminium, steel and gold, priced from €400 to almost €20,000). The tech under the hood is the same for all three. There's a touchscreen, but most basic controls are handled between a 'crown' (small dial) and a button on one side.

Its basic functions allow messaging, social media notifications, health-tracking, review of photos and call-answering. It will also respond to voice commands and queries via Siri functionality (like your iPhone).

There are diverse apps for it that include music (Shazam), business software (Salesforce) and others. A new app store has been created for it and sits on your iPhone, which is what controls much of the Watch's connectivity (via Bluetooth). But it can function without being connected to an iPhone: it can store and play music wirelessly to headphones when out on a run, for example. It needs to be recharged every day, although Apple says it has a working battery life of around 18 hours.


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