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Apple Asking Small Number of Developers to Prepare Apple Watch Apps by Mid-February

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According to a new report from MacRumors, Apple has started to ask several top-tier developers to prepare their Apple Watch apps for launch in the App Store by mid-February.

The report notes that a large Apple Pay partner has been asked to have their Apple Watch companion app ready by February 12. It appears as though the company wants to test several third-party apps before the device is released to the public.

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The testing phase could allow Apple to get a sense of what the Apple Watch’s battery life will be like when running non-Apple apps. The company could also be using the select apps created by these top-tier developers to showcase the Apple Watch during a demonstration video or launch event.

“Apple Pay will be a key function of the Apple Watch, letting users authorize credit card payments right from their wrists. As has been outlined in the past, the Apple Watch will authenticate payments biometrically, requiring a passcode when the device is first placed on a wrist and again if it loses skin contact.”

Earlier this week, Apple CEO Tim Cook confirmed that the development of the device is on schedule. Apple is scheduled to release the Apple Watch in the United States in April 2015 with a starting price tag of $349. The device will come in three models, including a standard model, sports model, and a luxury 18-karat gold Watch Edition.

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