Apple Watch release date, price and features

Apple Watch release date has launched and so has our review

Apple Watch faces

Nine default Apple Watch faces make this wrist hugger even more personal and, like apps, developers are likely to support additional designs via the WatchKit SDK.

Apple Watch release date
Analog Apple Watch faces

Apple mixes it up out-of-the-box with fashionable analog watch faces Chronograph, Color, Simple and Utility. Less professional, but still a timeless classic is the Mickey Mouse watch face.

Digital watch faces show off something special too. Motion flutters with animated background, Astronomy lets you rotate a 3D Earth and Solar follows the sun's real-time path based on your location.

Apple Watch release date
Digital Apple Watch faces

Modular is shaping up be the most customizable watch face of the nine. Swap in stock quotes, weather forecasts or your next calendar event to make this grid-like design in tune with your day.

Apple promises custom watch faces with "millions of different appearances," and this is how it gets there from the initial nine. Most allow you to change the colors, design elements and functionality.

The best part about these Apple Watch faces is that none of them are permanent. If you tire of starring at the a layout, you can always swap it out by pressing down on the face and sliding through the gallery.

Apple Watch compatibility

Compatibility

Apple Watch compatibility follows the company's strict iPhone 5 or later policy that reflects its recent Apple CarPlay initiative. It's lightning or nothing.

Even though the battery-saving Bluetooth 4.0 Low Energy technology made its debut in the iPhone 4S, it's time for an upgrade. It's also be time to find space to step up to iOS 8.2.

Just don't expect a Android phone to ever work with the Apple Watch, even if you have the new Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge. Yes, Android Wear compatibility for iOS is being worked on, but we don't expect Apple to return the favor.

The competition

We plan to strap the Apple Watch to our non-dominant wrist, but its got a lot of competition to stay buckled in due to all of the Android Wear and Samsung smartwatches.

In fact, since MWC 2015, there are even more Apple Watch competitors that are compatible with new, sleeker phones like the Samsung Galaxy S6 and HTC One M9.

LG Watch Urbane

LG Watch Urbane

Now out, the LG Watch Urbane is one such competitor which rivals Apple for all of its money if you're concerned about the price. Unlike the Apple Watch (and many other smartwatches) the Watch Urbane comes with an attractive round face that gives it a classy, traditional look.

A reboot of the G Watch R, the Urbane swaps out the chunky plastic body for a slightly more slender all metal affair, making it clear LG is going after Apple with its latest wearable. The screen also looks gorgeous thanks to the P-OLED technology, and on the back of the watch is a heart rate monitor for health apps.

It's also be the first Google-powered with the newly announced Android Wear update featuring Wi-Fi connectivity, better battery performance and emojis you can draw on the wrist.

Unlike the Apple Watch, the LG Watch Urbane only comes in one size so if you're not a fan of the design then there's little you can do about it. At £299.99 ($350, about AU$550), the LG Watch Urbane is one of the most expensive smartwatches on the market, but it's still cheaper than the Apple Watch.

Moto 360

Moto 360

Moto 360 is another stylish smartwatch with a circular design, and it's one of the best-looking wearables on the market today.

No, its LCD screen and Android Wear software are as dynamic as Apple Watch's display and WatchKit, but we feel the round design gives the Moto 360 the edge in the looks department. It's also around $100 cheaper than the lowest Apple Watch price.

Apple Watch release date and price
Pre-orders and preview coming on April 10 to nine countries

Apple beats Moto 360 in customization options with the variety of Apple Watch bands that will be available out-of-the-box, but Motorola made its smartwatch compatible with standard 22mm bands, so there are technically more third-party choices than what's sold in the Moto Maker store.

Both the Apple Watch and the Moto 360 also allow you to change the style of the watch face, with the recent update to Android 5.0 Lollipop allowing a huge range of new designs to be available to Moto 360.

TechRadar is going to keep updating this feature explainer, including more tests for the battery life, now that we have launched our full Apple Watch review.