Apple has admitted that interest for the Apple Watch has outstripped supply, and when it opens for pre-order on 10 April the only way to secure one will be through the company's website.
Orders for the Apple Watch will be taken exclusively through the website during its "initial launch period," and customers keen to try on the watch are encouraged to make an appointment through the Apple website.
Apple retail chief Angela Ahrendts said: "We are excited to welcome customers tomorrow and introduce them to Apple Watch, our most personal device yet. Based on the tremendous interest from people visiting our stores...we expect that strong demand will exceed our supply at launch. To provide the best experience and selection to as many customers as we can, we will be taking orders for Apple Watch exclusively online during the initial launch period."
Customers interested in seeing the watch, which will be available to try on from 10 April, should visit their local Apple Store to book a personalised session with a so-called 'Specialist' to find the right size, design and strap for them. Apple is encouraging customers to make an appointment on its website; this will be possible - along with the ability to place pre-orders - from 8:01am BST on 10 April.
This system of appointments and online-only purchases for home delivery is very different to the scenes of fans queuing in their thousands to buy the latest iPhone, a scene Apple regularly shows off at its new product announcements. Issues with customers buying iPhones to sell abroad on various grey markets may have encouraged the shift in how Apple sells its products.
Those looking to splash out on the gold Watch Edition are encouraged to visit a new, purpose-built Apple Watch shop in the Selfridges department store in London. Situated in the store's Wonder Room, the Watch shop will be rubbing shoulders with the likes of Rolex and Cartier, plus luxury smartphone maker Vertu.
Starting from 24 April, Watch will also be available at boutiques in major cities including Colette in Paris, Dover Street Market in London and Tokyo, Maxfield in Los Angeles and The Corner in Berlin.
Apple Watch starts at £299 for the 38mm, aluminium Sport model, rising to between £479 and £949 for the stainless steel Watch (depending on case size and strap style). Watch Edition comes in 18-carat yellow or rose gold and costs between £8,000 and £13,500.