Almost half (46%) of consumers are aware of the Apple Watch launch, according to a new study from research firm GFK.\u00a0\r\n\r\nGFK said that the figure was an \u201cimpressive\u201d number for a new product launch and that it reflects Apple\u2019s dominance in the consumer technology category.\r\n\r\nOverall, the study found that 19% of consumers are \u2018extremely\u2019 or \u2018very\u2019 interested in the launch, while 20% are \u2018fairly\u2019 interested. Those in the age category of 25 to 34 are the most likely to be extremely or very interested (34%).\r\n\r\nSome 56% of current smartphone owners are extremely or very interested compared with 12% of non-owners, while 61% of those \u2018intending\u2019 to buy are also extremely or very interested, compared with 17% of non-owners.\r\n\r\nThe study also found that 27% of Apple fans are extremely or very interested in the launch, as are 29% of owners of other Apple devices.\r\n\r\nAt 12%, intention to purchase a smartwatch ranks sixth after a smartphone, tablet, laptop, games console and smart TV. However, one third (32%) of people that already own a smartwatch intend to buy one, compared to 11% of non-owners \u2013 suggesting that once customers have had a smartwatch, they recognise the benefits of the device.\r\n\r\nThe research, which was conducted before the launch, found that 57% of prospective buyers were waiting until the launch of the Apple Watch before deciding which smartwatch or fitness brand to buy.\r\n\r\nAnne Giulianotti, joint-head of technology at GfK said: \u201cApple is a much loved and admired brand so it\u2019s no wonder that many potential smartwatch buyers are delaying their decision on what to buy until the launch of its device on 24th April.\r\n\r\n\u201cIn Q1 2015, smartwatches made up 7% of the wearable tech category. With the launch of Apple\u2019s watch in a few days, we expect that figure to rise as people see what one of the world\u2019s favourite tech brands has to offer.\u201d\r\n\r\nHowever the study also found that consumer expectations of the cost are way below the actual price.\r\n\r\nThe majority (73%) of people interested in the launch of the watch said they are prepared to spend up to \u00a3299, the price of the small sports version of the smartwatch. Some 17% are prepared to spend between \u00a3300-\u00a3399, and one in ten (10%) are prepared to pay \u00a3400 or more \u2013 closer to the \u00a3479 price tag of the basic standard Apple smartwatch.