March 9 Apple event likely geared to Apple Watch

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Apple has announced a media event for March 9 (Image: Apple)

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The wearable the world has been waiting for is nearly here. Apple has announced a "spring forward" event for March 9 that will most likely center around the release of the Apple Watch.

Apple first introduced its smartwatch in September of last year – in the same media event where the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus were introduced – but the company made it clear that it would not be ready until early in 2015.

Now here we are. Notices from Apple went out Thursday, announcing the event to be held at 10 am at San Francisco's Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. That's actually 30 hours after Californians will officially perform the annual "spring forward" of setting their clocks (and watches) forward an hour to begin daylight savings time.

We expect to see Apple demonstrate the functions of its first new product category since the iPad in more detail, and hopefully provide some more information on pricing and availability (Tim Cook previously said he expected the watch to ship in April). We know the watch will start at US$349, but the high-end gold-plated model is rumored to run as high as several thousand dollars.

We also already know the Apple Watch will have a significant health monitoring component and will integrate Apple Pay and partnerships like one already announced with Starwood Hotels, to use the watch as a room key.

The Apple Watch will enter a crowded field of smartwatches from the likes of Motorola, Samsung and Pebble. We'll see soon if Apple once again remakes a product category in its own image.

It's also possible that the event may include an announcement of an iPad Pro or Retina MacBook Air.

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