After leaked photos of an official Apple Watch charging dock appeared online over the past few days, it appears the product is real and will soon be available.
TechCrunch reported on Wednesday that Apple will sell the circular Apple Watch accessory for $79.
The dock will charge an Apple Watch wirelessly in two ways: When you place the watch down flat on the charger and also with the Apple Watch on its side. Apple recently introduced what it calls Nightstand mode in the latter position.
The watch shows the time for a few seconds in a green color during Nightstand mode. Tapping it during the night shows the current time although it can also wake up if the internal sensors feel any connected movement as well; a bump of my nightstand in the middle of the night is often enough for a quick time check.
Unlike the included wireless charger for Apple Watch, the dock isn't small.
Instead, it's about 3-inches in diameter to comfortably hold the watch for charging purposes. It also uses Apple's Lightning port for the power connection; the small, included charge is hard wired to a USB cable. Neither option includes a power brick, however. I'm glad I put an outlet with USB charging ports near my bed.
The reported $79 cost seems a bit high to me; even by Apple standards. If that's the price, I'll be passing; the charger that came with my Apple Watch is just fine, thank you.
In fact, the Apple Watch can be recharged with nearly any Qi-compatible charging product, so there are plenty of other unofficial and third-party options to choose from for less.
However, some will be willing to splurge on the official Apple Watch dock, which is surely a profit machine.
I wouldn't be surprised if the new dock costs the company $15 to $20 for labor and materials, and if so, that's a healthy profit margin for a company already printing money each quarter.