Home Last-Minute Apple Watch Rumor Roundup: Secret Labs And Smart Straps

Last-Minute Apple Watch Rumor Roundup: Secret Labs And Smart Straps

With just days to go before we get to see the finished Apple Watch in all its wearable glory, the Web is awash with gossip and rumor—of varying plausibility—about the smartwatch and its imminent arrival.

Bloomberg has news of a “secret lab” where app developers have been hunkered down getting software ready for the device. Apps from Facebook, BMW and United Airlines are said to be among those being prepared for the launch event, and the impression they leave on users could be a key factor in Apple shifting units in the first few weeks.

According to the Bloomberg report, the app developer room is cut off from the outside world: there’s no Internet access and you can’t bring in so much as a pad of paper. Code is being stored on hard drives which are physically shipped between locations to avoid leaks.

As crucial as apps are to the success of the Apple Watch, they could hurt its chances too: overuse of the device’s sensors or screen is likely to make a shaky battery life situation even worse. Apple is rumored to have placed limits on what developers can do for exactly this reason.

The Smart Strap That (Maybe) Isn’t

Elsewhere, TechCrunch has heard of a hidden port on the Apple Watch that allows for direct access to the OS—and which could ultimately be used for smart strap accessories. These bands might offer extra sensors or battery life, for example. Pebble is pursuing a similar idea.

The 6-dot brass contact array is underneath the bottom strap connector slot, TechCrunch says, and has so far only been used for diagnostic purposes. 9to5Mac suggests this is actually a Lightning port solely for developer use, and it won’t be making it to units shipped to consumers.

With space on the Apple Watch at a premium, it seems unlikely that a port will make it to the finished product, but we’ll know more on Monday. Apple should also reveal an exact shipping date and price tiers for the more expensive models.

Photo courtesy of Apple

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