Apple has launched a new tool that finally lets you custom-design your Apple Watch.
When users head to the companyâ€™s Apple
Watch Gallery page on the hardware makerâ€™s website, theyâ€™ll now find an interactive mix-and-match tool to find the perfect design for their personal preference.
Apple has slowly eased restrictions on how prospective buyers can try out Apple Watch. When the smartwatch launched last year, in-store customers had to book an appointment for a sales representative to walk them through the many versions and then individually select the models theyâ€™d try on. Shoppers were also given a 15-minute time limit to try out Apple Watch before the representative moved on.
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Last summer, Apple eased these policies ever so slightly, letting customers walk in whenever theyâ€™d like and find a store representative to try out some Apple Watch units. It wasnâ€™t ideal for those just perusing, but it was better than previous shopping experience.
Meanwhile, the online Apple Watch store has been somewhat clumsy. Users have been required to scroll through a long list of Apple Watch variations in order to find the item they wanted before purchasing. Then, after getting the wearable, if they decided the Watch case they chose didnâ€™t quite match the band, they might need to go down to an Apple Store just to see what it might look like with an alternative.
Simply put, buying an Apple Watchâ€”especially onlineâ€”has taken some imagination.
However, Appleâ€™s new gallery changes all of that.
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Launched just recently on the companyâ€™s Apple Watch page and discovered earlier by Engadget, customers are guided through the process of customizing Apple Watch so they can see for themselves exactly what it will look like when they get it on their wrist.
First, users can flick their way through the images of the Apple Watch cases and choose the one theyâ€™d like best. Once they select the desired case, Apple overlays its many bands and, with a flick of the cursor, customers can see what that case might look like on, say, the Yellow Sport Band, or one of the new nylon bands Apple announced during its â€œLet Us Loop You Inâ€ event (alongside a $50 price cut to its entry-level Apple Watch Sport model) on Monday.
Finally, once these design points are determined, itâ€™s time to check out the many faces Apple offers in its wearable to see what the total package will look like. If any tweaks need to be made, the Gallery lets users go back to choose another case or band before they have the perfect fit.
There is, though, one major caveat: the gallery doesnâ€™t provide a gateway to the register. So, while customers might be able to mix-and-match Watch cases with wristbands to their heartâ€™s content, Apple doesnâ€™t let them buy the design directly from the gallery page. Instead, customers will need to exit the page, choose the â€œBuyâ€ option, and pick case and band options through Appleâ€™s online checkout.
While that is undoubtedly a painâ€”and hopefully one Apple addresses in the near futureâ€”the new tool is a nice addition to the companyâ€™s online store. Buying Apple Watch in-store has, at times, been needlessly difficult. Scrolling through several Apple Watch versions before finding the right one online can be mind-numbing. As Apple adds more wristbands over time, itâ€™s becoming even more difficult to find which version to buy.
Apple has seemingly acknowledged those issues. With this new tool, the tech giant has delivered something that makes it far less likely for prospective owners to suffer from buyers regret.