Apple Watch Hits Retail Stores In Mid-June - InformationWeek

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IoT
IoT
Mobile // Mobile Devices
Commentary
6/4/2015
10:02 AM
Eric Zeman
Eric Zeman
Commentary
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Apple Watch Hits Retail Stores In Mid-June

Apple Watch back orders will reach customers within two weeks, and Apple is planning to launch its smartwatch in seven more countries June 26.

Apple Watch: My In-Store Demo
Apple Watch: My In-Store Demo
(Click image for larger view and slideshow.)

Supplies of the Apple Watch are finally catching up to demand. Apple said the Watch is going to be more widely available during the second half of June, and before long consumers will be able to walk into an Apple Store and buy one.

"The response to Apple Watch has surpassed our expectations in every way, and we are thrilled to bring it to more customers around the world," Jeff Williams, Apple's senior vice president of operations, wrote in a June 4 statement. Apple has not said exactly how many watches it has sold. When asked directly, Apple only said "a lot."

"We're also making great progress with the backlog of Apple Watch orders," wrote Williams, "and we thank our customers for their patience. All orders placed through May, with the sole exception of Apple Watch 42mm Space Black Stainless Steel with Space Black Link Bracelet, will ship to customers within two weeks. At that time, we'll also begin selling some models in our Apple Retail Stores."

(Image: Kelly Sheridan/InformationWeek)

(Image: Kelly Sheridan/InformationWeek)

Two weeks from Thursday, June 4, is June 18. If you placed an order for the Apple Watch at any point in May, you should expect your precious wearable to arrive by the 18th. On or about that same day, Apple will let you buy an Apple Watch in the Apple Store. Until now, consumers have only able to gawk at the wearable in stores. Apple is taking orders for the device exclusively through its website.

Apple exhausted supply of the Apple Watch swiftly when it went on sale in late April. Within hours, consumers attempting to place orders encountered back-ordered devices with shipping dates stretching to July. It appears as though Apple has been able to ramp up production of the device accordingly.

In addition to the broader availability in the US, the Apple Watch will go on sale in seven more countries June 26, including Italy, Mexico, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland, and Taiwan.

[Check out a list of Apple Watch apps for road warriors. ]

Apple recently updated the Watch with a refreshed version of the operating system. The update improved performance of the device significantly. For example, third-party apps now function smoothly and without the delays and the sluggish performance pointed out by early adopters. Siri now functions more consistently, and the Watch is better able to measure certain fitness activities.

The Watch arrived as the market for wearables appears to be skewed toward fitness bands, according to IDC. With smartwatches counting for just 25% of wearable shipments during the first quarter of 2015, it will be interesting to witness what sort of impact Apple's wearable has on the prevalence of smartwatches and the wearable market as a whole moving forward.

The Apple Watch starts at $349 and ramps up to $17,000 depending on the model. The Watch Sport is the least expensive; the Apple Watch fills in the middle of the range with price points starting at $549; and the Watch Edition, made of gold, starts at $10,000.

Eric is a freelance writer for InformationWeek specializing in mobile technologies. View Full Bio
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tjgkg
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tjgkg,
User Rank: Ninja
6/24/2015 | 9:28:19 AM
Re: warning: industry transformation ahead
Agreed. I was really skeptical at first. But having tried out the watch at a store and seeing what it could do, i decided to get one. Aside from the top quality of manufacture which immediately sets it apart from its competitors, it really is useful. With the new operating system coming out soon, it will address some issues and expand its capabilities. I am enjoying using it.

Never thought i would be saying this!
soozyg
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50%
soozyg,
User Rank: Ninja
6/8/2015 | 7:31:41 AM
Re: having an Apple summer
they should have said "we are very happy to sell more iwatches, our commercials aren't working anymore".

That's funny! Truth in advertising would be refreshing! 
PedroGonzales
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PedroGonzales,
User Rank: Ninja
6/7/2015 | 11:17:08 PM
Re: having an Apple summer
@soozyg. Instead of wasting three lines, they should have said "we are very happy to sell more iwatches, our commercials aren't working anymore". I think in terms of technology, especially Apple,there is a huge emphasis in building hype and momentum on your product.  I think it will difficult to know whether iwatches are really impacting people's lives as they promise it would. As of now, it is more hype than substance.
danielcawrey
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danielcawrey,
User Rank: Ninja
6/6/2015 | 2:25:07 AM
Re: warning: industry transformation ahead
The success of the Apple Watch selling so many units bodes well for a category I've been pretty bearish about. If Apple can find true killer use cases for a smartwatch, then it will be on to something. With its clout, I'm sure developers will find siginifcant apps for this type of device – hopefully that doesn't take too long to accomplish. 
Whoopty
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50%
Whoopty,
User Rank: Ninja
6/5/2015 | 8:05:08 AM
Re: having an Apple summer
I agree, I don't see the smartwatch phenomenon lasting that long. When the watch itself can double as the phone and link up with a smart earbud maybe, but there's little point in the current smartwatches available. Especailly Apples, considering how expensive it is and that it will be out of date in less than a year. 

Anyone spending over $15,000 is very shortsighted. 
soozyg
50%
50%
soozyg,
User Rank: Ninja
6/5/2015 | 7:45:01 AM
Re: having an Apple summer
I agree it's odd (and maybe telling) that the company didn't put a number on  "a lot." And as a PR specialist, I can say that ""The response to Apple Watch has surpassed our expectations in every way, and we are thrilled to bring it to more customers around the world," means absolutely nothing.
PedroGonzales
50%
50%
PedroGonzales,
User Rank: Ninja
6/4/2015 | 10:20:42 PM
having an Apple summer
it is strange how Apple didn't put a number on the exact number of iwatches they sold. They said a "lot".  Today, I saw a guy using a smartphone it was really funny.  He was walking in downtown NYC and had place the phone on his ear because he couldn't hear what the speaker was saying.  I wouldn't want to be that guy.  Why not just use a smartphone.  There just some things you weren't meant to do on an iwatch.
nasimson
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50%
nasimson,
User Rank: Ninja
6/4/2015 | 10:06:34 PM
warning: industry transformation ahead
Appears that Apple will enter the watch industry and will transform it forever just like it did with music, phone, mobile software and publishing.

Exciting times ahead for wearables!
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