Apple Watch – Will it cannibalise iPhone sales?

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Its been a little while since the launch and I have been letting my thoughts on the Apple Watch settle.

So we have two models available to normal folks and the gold edition for those with more money than sense. Please don’t give me nonsense about $10,000 not being that much money for a watch for the wealthy. It’s a vulgar waste of money. At least a normal watch can be handed down and reused. The Apple watch v1 will be useless within years as the features and software make it redundant.If people have that kind of money to throw about they should be using it for something more beneficial either to themselves or others. I’ll get off my soapbox..

That leaves us with the sport and watch versions. There is no difference in the internal specs just purely cosmetic differences. Whilst the sport is made from anodised aluminium the Watch is made of stainless steel. Which you chose is therefore decided purely by your budget and fashion tastes. Personally if I was going for one I would go for the stainless steel model simply because for me until it can be used without taking your phone with you it’s hopeless a sport watch. The fact that to charge it requires yet another charger to remember to pack when travelling is annoying to say the least especially when the battery life is such that you know it’ll be dead after 18 hours at best.

Hats off to Apple, they did a good job of selling the watch during the keynote. We saw some cool examples of things you can do with it. They justified the price tag by showing the level of engineering that went into it and some metallurgy lessons to boot. Ultimately the more I see it the more I want one. I have a suspicion this might change when I see it in the stores. The Moto 360 can be made to look sexy in press images but when you see it for real that thing is big. Too thick. They say ‘seeing is believing’ but it may polarize people. I think people will either see it and lust after it or be put off by its size.

It will see an initial success and its sales will wipe out all other wearable watches, be it Pebble or Android Wear et al, combined. It’s what happens next that’s going to be interesting. Will it see great uptake quarter on quarter as more people use it and praise it to their social circles or will the exact opposite happen? Negative press / publicity sticks with people and if the verdict of the early adopters is that it’s a waste of time and they gave up wearing it that’s going to be hard from then on to convince folks its worth it.

If it does take off one thing I believe we will start to see is sales of the iPhone declining ( outside of China ) whilst people stick with their current phone and use the money to buy the latest Apple Watch instead.

All other smartwatch manufacturers will be waiting with bated breath to see how this new chapter in Apples evolution pans out. Interest in the Apple Watch will drive their sales as people decide they want a smartwatch but for various reasons they don’t want the Apple watch.

Wearables are about to get much more interesting.

 

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4 Comments

  1. Karl Proctor

    Excellent post. I agree with just about everything you’ve said, particularly the $10,000 part.

    For me, I’ll be getting a sport version, as I’m writing iOS apps, and need to test my developments on a physical device.

    • humanv2

      Thanks for your kind words and great to see some comments! Have you got a clear vision of how the Apple Watch might add to your apps user experience yet?

      • Karl Proctor

        I do. I have an app that allows the user to search for establishments in a variety of ways. The default way is based on location. So at present this involves launching the app and tapping one button.

        I think this would translate pretty well to the watch.

        • humanv2

          Sounds like it should work well and finding things around you with minimal interaction with the watch is a useful tool.

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