Apple invited developers to secret Apple Watch lab ahead of Monday’s event

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By Larry Banks

Apple has reportedly been inviting select developers from companies such as BMW, Facebook and United Airlines to Cupertino to prepare their Apple Watch apps in advance of the event scheduled for Monday.

Apple’s secret Apple Watch developers’ lab

According to a report in Bloomberg, Apple has gone to incredible lengths to keep what it’s been showing developers a closely guarded secret.

Apple won’t allow any outside materials into the test lab, which includes electronics as well as pen and paper. Apparently, even the code that developers bring to Apple’s campus has to remain on hard drives on-site.

Some of the Apple Watch features have already been disclosed, at the event last September, but Apple’s legendary secrecy points to that the fact that most of the features and partnerships will be announced soon.

Apple also insisted that the developers invited to the lab sign non-disclosure agreements, in order to prevent any leaks to the press. But the fact that Apple is working so closely with developers prior to the device’s launch suggests that the company intends to have a wide selection of apps available for the Apple Watch as soon as it’s launched.

Details about the Apple Watch are expected to be revealed on Monday, at an event in San Francisco – this should include pricing, availability and a complete rundown of the device’s features.

It’s Apple’s first new device since the iPad was released back in 2010, so the stakes are high. The sophistication of the apps and capabilities are of course critical to persuade buyers to fork out for the gadget. And just as the App Store was key to the iPhone’s success, tools for the Apple Watch will determine how customers use it and whether it will be a huge hit.

“Initial demand could be stronger than the iPhone and iPad when they launched”, Katy Huberty, an analyst at Morgan Stanley, said in a note to investors this month. She estimates that Apple may ship 30 million watches in the first 12 months, helping the company to generate more than $6 billion in additional revenue.

SOURCE: Bloomberg

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