Maybe Apple Watch isn’t doomed after all


Apple Watch is doing just fine, thank you.
Apple Watch is doing just fine, thank you.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

That Slice data? Totally misleading, says analyst Mark Hibben.

Instead, he says, Apple sold over 4.5 million Apple Watches in two months of the June fiscal quarter. That’s way more than the 1 million units of the original iPhone Apple sold when it first launched in 2007.

“Apple Watch has a bright future,” writes Hibben, “despite what some market research polls might indicate. In its launch quarter, Watch will add about $2 billion in revenue to Apple’s top line.”

With numbers like that, even Apple can’t call the Apple Watch a hobby.

Of course, even Hibben (who was incredibly bullish on Apple Watch at launch) realizes that the supply has been more constrained than he predicted. Even still, he still expects 30 million units to move during the 2015 calendar year, with the new watchOS 2 a big factor in convincing even more people to pick up Apple’s wrist gadget.

As for the Slice data itself, Hibben points out the limited a data set it represents.

“There could be a lot of problems with the Slice methodology,” he writes, “but even if it represents what it claims to represent – online sales of Watch in the U.S. – these are still significant limitations. Global sales, especially in China, are not accounted for, and neither are sales through Apple retail stores.”

Apple Watch is a personal device. Most rank and file, non-early adopters aren’t going to want to order such an intimate device on the web. They want to go into a store, try different versions on, and purchase there. Apple knows this, which is why every store has models to put on your body. The only reason initial sales were online was due to supply constraints. And maybe Apple was hedging its bets, just a little.

People aren’t losing interest in the Apple Watch, says Hibben, any more than they’re losing interest in the iPhone 6. While the brand-new Apple Watch may not be as easy a sell as the already-established iPhone line of products, it still offers a compelling value proposition.

“I expect that to change as the Watch is endowed with forthcoming generations of operating systems and hardware that allow the Watch to do and be more,” he writes. “The Watch is a form factor that has moved out in front of the technology packed into it. But not for long.”

Source: Seeking Alpha