Set your patently inferior, non-Apple smartwatch for October, the rumored launch month for the iPhone-compatible Apple iWatch.

The Cupertino company has hinted at "new product categories" for 2014 and we're expecting the infamous Apple watch to be its next "one more thing" surprise.

Apple's first wearable gadget could beam messages, simplified apps and Siri to our wrists, eliminating the all-too-common need to take out our devices to constantly check notifications.

Cut to the chase
What is it? An iOS-friendly watch that plays nice with your iPhone (probably)
When is it out? The rumors say later in 2014
What will it cost? No one really knows

It's going to become especially convenient to pocket the all-but-confirmed larger iPhone 6 in your jeans and always stow the next 9.7-inch iPad Air 2 in a bag later this year.

At the same time, iWatch leaks have pointed to Nike FuelBand SE-inspired fitness tracking and biometric sensors. Apple certainly set the stage for this and more at WWDC 2014.

Release date

For a gadget that supposedly keeps the time, the iWatch release date rumors have been all over the place. It highlights the fact that no one outside of Apple has the full scoop.

Most reports tilt toward an October launch with mass production kicking off later this month.

iWatch

iWatch would be right on time. Google's first Android Wear smartwatches just released care of the Samsung Gear Live, LG G Watch and soon Moto 360, and none work with iPhones.

But at least one analyst believes that the Apple iWatch has been delayed to November with mass production beginning as late as September.

That's hardly enough time to manufacturer the targeted 10 million smartwatches that have been suggested for the iWatch launch window.

Rather than a delay into 2015, though, we suspect it'll mean a limited supply in October or November - just like that hard-to-find, buzz-generating gold iPhone 5S last year.

Price

An even trickier question than "when will it come out?" is "how much will the iWatch cost?" There's really no precedent for a premium smartwatch price just yet.

That notorious Apple tax could push the pricetag to $250 (about £146, AU$266) or even $300 (about £175, AU$320) given the rumored production difficulties and components involved.

Apple has also recruited high-profile people throughout the watch and biometrics industries who have likely wound up on its iWatch team. That talent comes at a price.

Then there's a the hidden cost. While a subsidized iPhone 6 is cheaper upfront, stores make up the difference with contract kickbacks. Not so with a smartwatch. Stores need a cut too.

Apple iWatch
How much will it cost new in the box?

For the sake of comparison, Android Wear's cheaper options are the Samsung Gear Live at $200 (£170, AU$250) and LG G Watch at $230 (£160, AU$250).

But Apple's biggest and most stylish competition is from Motorola, and the Moto 360 price is likely to be $250 (about £146, AU$266, but more likely £200, AU$275 given its rivals' prices).

Apple is thought to be aiming for luxury, but the final iWatch price may greatly depend on the display and specs that make it tick.