Lumoid will rent the Apple Watch starting at $45 a week
No, not the gold one.
We recently wrote about gadget rental site Lumoid as a source for trying out gadgets like the Jawbone UP24 activity tracker or Google Glass—you can order Lumoid’s wearables in batches of five and see which fits your actual lifestyle the best, rather than just guessing based on what you can glean from product websites and reviews.
And we mentioned that Lumoid already has a waiting list to test-drive the Apple Watch. You can sign up with your email address to be notified when you can rent one of Lumoid’s limited stash of Apple Watch and Apple Watch Sport models, sometime after Apple starts shipping them April 24. (No Apple Watch Edition—sorry, gold diggers.)
Mashable reported Wednesday that the company plans to rent the stainless steel Apple Watch for $55 a week, with $30 of that being credited toward the purchase price if you decide you’d like to buy it. The aluminum Apple Watch Sport rents for $45, with $25 going toward the optional purchase. Lumoid already rents the Basis Peak and Pebble smartwatches, and plans to add the Moto 360 and other Android Wear watches, although iPhone users won’t have much fun trying those out.
Update 7:48 p.m. PDT: Lumoid reached out via Twitter to clarify that the Apple Watch is being added to the current Home Try-On program for wearables. You can choose up to five wearables per Home Try-On box, but only one Apple Watch in an order. So this could help if you're wavering between a more focused fitness device and the fully feature-packed Apple Watch. You could see how the Apple Watch's fitness coaching compares to the Garmin Vivofit, for example, or test the watch's heart rate monitoring against the Basis Peak.
@sfsooz Yes that's right - Apple Watch plus 4 more will be $45 (or $55 for Steel version). You can only test-drive one Apple Watch per order— Lumoid (@LumoidIt) March 12, 2015
But couldn’t you just buy an Apple Watch from Apple and return it if you don’t like it? Well, sure. In the U.S., Apple’s standard return policy says you have 14 days from the time you receive your purchase to return it for a refund, and the Apple Watch isn’t listed as an item that’s ineligible to return. If you’re far from an Apple Store, returning an item to Lumoid will probably be easier, since the Home Try-On box comes with a return label…and perhaps you’ve already mentally prepared yourself to send it back.
I wasn’t fully convinced I wanted an Apple Watch until I got to try it in person on Monday. A few minutes of demo time made me a believer, but getting to try one out at home, over multiple days, would be undeniably cool. Apple said at Monday’s event that potential customers can try on an Apple Watch at the Apple Store starting April 10, the beginning of the preorder period. So that might be a better place to mix and match bands and compare sizes. But if you want to pair the Apple Watch with your phone, install apps, and really use it like it’s yours, Lumoid’s rental program is worth a look.