Apple Watch unveiled alongside new larger iPhones

Apple CEO Tim Cook speaks during an Apple event announcing the iPhone 6 and the Apple Watch at the Flint Center in Cupertino

Apple has unveiled a smart-watch – the Apple Watch – its first new product line since the first iPad and the death of its co-founder Steve Jobs.

The device runs apps, acts as a health and fitness tracker and communicates with the iPhone.

While rival smart-watches already exist, experts said Apple had a history of entering sectors relatively late and then changing their direction.

The Apple Watch comes in two sizes and is controlled by what Apple calls a “digital crown” – a dial on its side that allows content on its screen to be magnified or scrolled through, and can also be pressed inwards to act as a home button.

The watch’s rear features LEDs and sensors to detect the user’s heart rate

The display is a touchscreen that can detect the difference between a light tap and heavier pressure from the user’s fingers. In addition, the device runs Siri – Apple’s voice-controlled “personal assistant”.

It offers a variety of different watch faces, can alert the user to notifications, act as a heart rate monitor and show maps.

Apple said that apps could be processed on an iPhone, but displayed on the watch in order to extend battery life. It did not say how often the device needed to be recharged.

Although some of these features are available from competing products, one observer said the device had the potential to ignite the wearable tech sector.

Apple also unveiled two new handsets that are larger than previous models.

The iPhone 6’s screen measures 4.7in (11.9cm) and the iPhone 6 Plus’s 5.5in (14.0cm) – a change that analysts said should help prevent users migrating to Android.

It also announced a new service called Apple Pay, which chief executive Tim Cook said he hoped would “replace the wallet” in shops.

Source: BBC