The list below, scraped from the App Store by 9to5Mac’s Zac Hall, was presumably curated by Apple with a purpose. Initial impressions are critical for a device whose utility is still an open question.
These apps — and any others approved before April 10 — are the ones staffers will be showing customers in Apple Store test-drives. They will shape the initial impressions in the first wave of Apple Watch reviews. They will also get a huge leg up — a first-mover advantage — on the competition.
It’s an interesting list. All 24 are updates of existing iOS apps. Some are there to show off functions — as hotel keys, credit cards, airline boarding passes. Others target narrow interests — cricket, baseball, fantasy football. Some — like WeChat and AliPay — are pitched to the Asian market. Some, like SkyGuide, are probably there because they’re just so cool.
Two notable omissions: Google and Facebook.
- Air Canada: Gate, boarding time and boarding pass
- AliPay: China’s Apple Pay (300 million users)
- Babbel: Learn languages by talking to your watch
- Dark Sky: Everybody’s favorite weather app
- ECB Cricket: Up-to-date cricket scores
- Evernote: Note-taking on steroids
- Expedia: A travel agent on your wrist
- Kitchen Stories: Weekly recipes and how-to videos
- Line: Free chat, voice, video calls (600 million users)
- MLB.com At Bat: Pitch-by-pitch live baseball
- Procreate Pocket: Sketch on your wrist, AirDrop to iPad
- Qantas Airways: Gate, boarding time, boarding pass
- Redfin: Shop for a home in 8 hot real estate markets
- Runtastic Six Pack: Spring is here; start working those abs
- Sky Guide: Hold it to the sky and it will name the stars
- Starwood Hotels: Check in, open room without passing reception
- The New York Times: All the news that’s fit to print
- Target: Shopping and identity theft made easier
- Things: To-do list manager
- TransitApp: Real-time bus and subway info in 75 cities
- The Wall Street Journal: The crown jewel of Rupert Murdoch’s empire
- Twitter: The world in 140 characters (500 million users)
- WeChat: China’s favorite chat app (438 million users)
- Yahoo Tourney Pick’Em: Fantasy football, baseball, basketball, hockey
Most of the images in Apple’s TV ad, below, were generated by home-grown apps.