Retail Apple Watches Still Have a Hidden Diagnostic Port [Updated]

The Apple Watch became available for pre-orders on Friday as well as for try-on appointments in Apple retail stores around the world.

One MacRumors reader, Louis, was able to slip off the bottom band during his Apple Watch try-on appointment to discover that the hidden diagnostic port on early models still remains in the retail versions.

diagnostic-apple-watch
The presence of the diagnostic port was first reported in March by TechCrunch with speculation that it could eventually open up the market for "smart" band accessories that can interface with the Apple Watch, itself. Apple, however, has made no such promises and doesn't even acknowledge the presence of the port in any official documentation. Louis also reports the retail staff had no training on the use of the port.

Thanks Louis

Update: John Gruber notes that his review unit has the port, but it is covered up:

Related Roundup: Apple Watch Series 9
Buyer's Guide: Apple Watch (Neutral)

Top Rated Comments

dilap Avatar
116 months ago
This could only be in the store versions, so they can load the demo software.
Score: 39 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Brian Y Avatar
116 months ago
How do we know they're using retail models?
Score: 37 Votes (Like | Disagree)
JoEw Avatar
116 months ago
It's coming, the Mophie :apple:Watch battery strap. :rolleyes:
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
kdarling Avatar
116 months ago
John Gruber tweeted that his port was covered up.

Neat. The photo gives the model number: A1554.

Just checked the FCC. No entry for the Apple Watch yet.

--

Although... there are already entries for two magnetic charging cables: A1570 and A1598.

APPLE WATCH MAGNETIC CHARGING CABLE
MODEL NUMBER: A1598



--
OH. And hmm, what's this? An entry for:

APPLE WATCH MAGNETIC CHARGING BRACELET
MODEL NUMBER: A1626




That's a bit different looking. Can't tell if that's a side view, top view or what it is. It also has an unusually small version above the larger more readable one.

The "Apple Confidential" is unusual for this document type, too. This is extra odd.

And why is it called a "BRACELET" ? Is it for store displays? For consumer use? Any guesses?
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
entropys Avatar
116 months ago
They will be as useful as those old USB ports that were on Apple TVs.

Hope I'm wrong.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
rorschach Avatar
116 months ago
I think it's safe to assume they are. Apple doesn't put anything on the floor that isn't final product.

Like the 32GB iPhone 6 models that are on the floor for demos?
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

maxresdefault

Apple Cancels Electric Car Project

Tuesday February 27, 2024 11:05 am PST by
Apple has canceled all plans to release an autonomous, electric vehicle, reports Bloomberg. Apple has been working on an Apple Car for more than a decade and invested millions of dollars into development before deciding it was not a viable project. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Apple's Chief Operating Officer Jeff Williams today told approximately 2,000 employees ...
iOS 18 Mock iPhone 16 Feature Gray

iOS 18 Rumored to Be Compatible With These iPhone Models

Tuesday February 27, 2024 6:31 am PST by
iOS 18 will be compatible with the iPhone XR, and thereby also the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max models with the same A12 Bionic chip, according to a post on X today from a private account with a proven track record of sharing build numbers for upcoming iOS updates. The post was spotted by MacRumors contributor Aaron Perris, and it has since been deleted. However, this was likely because the...
Google maps feaure

Google Maps Finally Rolls Out Glanceable Directions

Wednesday February 28, 2024 2:07 am PST by
After more than a year since announcing the feature, Google Maps is finally rolling out glanceable directions on Android and iOS (via Android Police). The feature allows users to view turn-by-turn directions and a live ETA directly from their device's lock screen – information that was previously only visible when a phone was unlocked. Glanceable directions also work on the app's route...
iOS 17

10 New Things Your iPhone Can Do in Next Week's iOS 17.4 Update

Friday March 1, 2024 1:30 am PST by
Apple will this month release iOS 17.4, its biggest iPhone software update of the year so far, featuring a number of features and changes that users have been anticipating for quite a while. Below, we've listed 10 new things that your iPhone will be able to do after you've installed the update, which is projected to arrive by March 7. When the day arrives, be sure to check Settings ➝...
iPad Air 5

iPadOS 18 Rumored to Drop Support for These iPad Models

Tuesday February 27, 2024 6:55 am PST by
iPadOS 18 will drop support for iPad models equipped with the A10X Fusion chip, according to a post on X today from a private account with a proven track record of sharing build numbers for upcoming iOS and iPadOS updates. This means that iPadOS 18 would not be compatible with the first-generation 10.5-inch iPad Pro or the second-generation 12.9-inch iPad Pro models released in 2017. It...
iOS 17

iOS 17.4 Coming Soon With These New Features for Your iPhone

Monday February 26, 2024 6:08 am PST by
In a press release last month, Apple confirmed that iOS 17.4 will be released in March, and the update includes several new features and changes for the iPhone. Key new features in iOS 17.4 include major App Store changes in the EU, Apple Podcasts transcripts, and an iMessage security upgrade. The update also adds new emoji and includes preparations for the launch of next-generation CarPlay...