Apple this evening has launched a new Reserve & Pickup system for Apple Watch customers in the UK, Australia, and other countries as they change to June 17th. Earlier today it was reported that Apple Watch would soon be available in retail stores and this development is a step towards that for customers. Apple’s webpage for Reserve & Pickup says that Apple Watch models are available by reservation in retail stores, although availability will still be sparse and limited to select variants of Apple Watch.
The Reserve & Pickup system allows customers to reserve a desired case and band combination online and then go to their local Apple Store to view the selection in-person before completing the purchase. Customers have only a certain window of time to pick up their selected items before they are returned to stock. Users can also only book one reservation at a time.
It appears likely that the new Reserve & Pickup system, which we initially reported on in March, will go live tomorrow, June 17th in the U.S. The online Apple Store in the United States now says “Buy Now” when referring to Apple Watch, whereas it previously said “Buy Exclusively Online.” An Apple support employee also this evening said that starting tomorrow, customers will be able to reserve and pick up Apple Watch in retail stores.
Since its launch, Apple Watch has been available exclusively online due to inventory shortages.