Cheap Apple Watch copies are being advertised on Alibaba’s Taobao, China’s most popular online shopping service.
Taobao site lists devices branded the AW08 and the iWatch.
They both feature “digital crown” dials on their sides, similar-styled straps and identical user interface graphics to Apple’s forthcoming wearable.
Taboao acts as a showcase for third-party sellers – much like eBay and Amazon’s Marketplace service – and some vendors have taken pains to make clear that the devices they are selling are not Apple’s own technology.
The copycats first came to light in January, when a reporter from the news site Mashable discovered one being displayed at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas.
Other giveaways that the watches are not the iPhone’s official “companion” include:
- They are being offered for about 258 yuan ($40) – a fraction of the 2,588 yuan that Apple will charge for its smartwatch in China when it goes on sale next month
- They do not feature the same heart-monitoring sensors on their rear – although this is not always made clear
- They boast longer battery life [youtube p1X8Vc5pfoU 650]