Apple Should Have Sold Watch Body Separately

Discussion in 'Apple Watch' started by atm2626, Apr 24, 2015.

  1. atm2626 macrumors newbie

    Mar 3, 2009
    After going through this week with disappointment, it made me wonder if Apple played this the right way. A large part of me thinks that Apple should have sold the watch body separately from the bands. This would have allowed for better logistics for a first in first out approach. This way Apple could have also covered their butts by not having to guess how many blue strapped watches they were going to sell. I would think people who ordered early would be a lot happier today if they had the watch body in hand with an option to go and buy a blue or white strap.

    The only downside on Apple's stand point that I can think of at the moment would be an increase in packaging costs.

    Hopefully they think of using this approach in the future.
  2. WiseAJ macrumors 6502


    Sep 8, 2009
    No, they should have only sold them with a black or white sport band and left all the other bands as standalone purchases
  3. Rogifan macrumors Core


    Nov 14, 2011
    Which nobody would have bought because psychologically they would treat the bands as something that comes with the watch (ala EarPods and iPhones) and would stick with the white or black bands as "good enough". How many iPhone owners upgrade from EarPods to something better? My guess is not many.
  4. atm2626 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 3, 2009
    That works too. Just basic default bands would have helped but would have sucked for those that don't want a rubber strap...even though this is heavily focused on activity/fitness.
  5. foxkoneko macrumors 6502

    Sep 5, 2011
    this :D
  6. shox2k2 macrumors 6502

    Jun 18, 2010
    Wichita, KS
    I agree. And if you are going to call it sport... it probably should be able to go into a freakin swimming pool.
  7. Payton macrumors regular


    Nov 23, 2006
    Portland, OR
    Apple would never sell a product like a watch without a wristband. If you failed to order a band, how would you use it? The first thing you're going to want to do with the watch is put it on… not open another box to assemble the band.

    If they were going to sell the watch as a singular standalone product with the purpose of simplifying inventory and ordering, they would have been smartest to not offer any choice at all. All models would come with a black band. In essence, you're only shopping for the watch case.

    But this type of simplicity doesn't fit with the hype Apple wants to build (exclusive bands and crown colors), the tagline of the product ("Most personal device"), or the respect they're paying to the tradition of the wristwatch.
  8. whtrbt7 macrumors 65816

    Jun 8, 2011
    While this might have made sense logistically, it doesn't make any common sense. It's like selling a car without the wheels and tires.
  9. whatos macrumors 6502a

    Apr 15, 2015
    Maranello Italy / California USA
    Watches are sold complete with a band. This isn't a kit.
  10. atm2626 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 3, 2009
    I get what you all are saying that buying an apple watch without the strap is like buying an incomplete product. But you guys act like the apple watch with the strap is functional out of the's not. It requires an iOS device.

    New product...
  11. docprego macrumors 65816

    Jun 12, 2007
    Henderson, NV
    I would have preferred it this way too. I wanted a matte silver finish so I went with the Sport model. But ultimately I really want a metal or leather band, so I bought the White Sport sort of as a temporary measure. It would have been far better if I could have purchased the device and band separately.

    Essentially I was forced to absorb the cost of the band.
  12. GLS macrumors 6502

    Jun 26, 2010
    Gee, what do you know:

  13. thomasfxlt58 macrumors regular

    Sep 14, 2014
    I think Apple should fill their stores ASAP with Sport and Stainless models with black and white sport bands as the only option. Order your upgrade band ala carte. That's 8 SKU's . They have a lot more iPhone SKU's and they manage a store launch just fine.

    Stop the custom shop nonsense and get products into your Hallmark Retail outlets..... unless of course those are now just showrooms for internet fullfillment.?!?!
  14. Piggie macrumors G3


    Feb 23, 2010
    There is a BIG difference between selling the watch without bands or watch and bands separately, and, as I have always said, and still do. STOCKING them separately.

    I may be able to go to a cycle shop and select which tires and saddle I want, and the saleperson fits my seat and tires of choice.

    This does not mean I can buy a bike without tires or a saddle.

    Only that it's easier for the store to stock the same bike, and just fit the item/s I wish as the point of sale.

    Same with the Watch.
    They should hold the bodies and straps separately in-store and simply bring them together for you when you buy it.
    Would speed everything up and make stocking different combinations so much easier.

    Apple are stupid doing it this way.
    If Apple made IceCream Cones, rather than stocking cones and having tubs of different flavor ice creams they take a scoop from when a customer chooses, they'd take your order and get the factory to make it to you then ship it back a few days later!
  15. Armen macrumors 604


    Apr 30, 2013
    Apple is selling you a watch, not watch parts so you can assemble it yourself.
  16. Brian Y macrumors 68040

    Oct 21, 2012
    There is zero difference between boxing them together or separately in store. Apple has a certain amount of each colour, whether in the same box or not.

    Unless you're suggesting they supply more bands than watches, which is not good from a business/profit per unit point. Why pay to make, transport and store more bands than are needed?
  17. Piggie macrumors G3


    Feb 23, 2010
    Because it makes sense, and that's how many many other products are sold.

    Jeezzz I really don't know how many times I need to explain this in these forums for people to actually grasp this basic concept that it used throughout the retail industry.

    You have a product that consists of two parts (in this case)
    The expensive main body, or which there are very few variations, and the straps, of which there are many many variations.

    Think of 3 iPad colours, White, Silver and Gold and a dozen iPad cases if that helps.

    You stock, in store the main parts (watch bodies/iPad's) separately. These are the few expensive parts.

    You then stock a LOT more of the very cheap things of which there are many more varieties. (watch straps / iPad cases)

    The customer comes in, picks what they want, you, in store, combine these and sell this combination.

    It would be silly to pack iPads with coloured cases at the factory would it not? Run out of iPads with red cases, but we have blue cased ones.

    No, you stock just the expensive part, the iPad, and many cheap cases in all colours that you combine at the point of sale in the store.

    Really this is so obvious and is used every day with so many other various products. I don't know why this is so hard to grasp.


    You think Ice Cream in cones should not be put together in store when a customer selects which flavor they want?

    You stock the same cones, and you stock say 8 different flavors of ice cream and you bring the combination together at point of sale.
  18. KPOM macrumors G5

    Oct 23, 2010
    Except they very much want this to be sold like traditional watches, which come in fancy boxes and have bands included. Once we get past the initial rush and Apple's supply chain is able to come through, this strategy makes a lot more sense. What we are seeing with these posts is frustration with the lack of supply.

    Selling every watch with a sport band and relying on third party sales is less than ideal for Apple. For starters, not everyone wants a sport band. Second, some people who otherwise might have stepped up to a pricier band might decide the sport band is "good enough."

    It's interesting how often Apple is accused of imposing a one-size-fits-all approach to their products, and that the one time they decide not to, we get post after post after post saying they should have imposed a one-size-fits-all approach to the Watch.
  19. Brian Y macrumors 68040

    Oct 21, 2012
    Firstly, you could have easily replied without the subtle digs.

    A case isn't required for an iPad, and a small percentage of people who buy an iPad buy an Apple Case. As for your ice cream example - pre-packaged cornets are sold together. Fresh food is a completely different industry.

    Let me explain this. For simplicity's sake, we'll say each store has 2000 watches - 200 of each white, blue, green, pink and black in 38mm and 42mm. I'm not going to include the SS/edition to keep it simple.

    So right now in it's current state, Apple has 2000 boxes, each with a watch and a band.

    if you separate it, Apple has to make and ship 2000 boxes for the watches, and 2000 boxes for the straps. The additional cost so far is the cost of a box (we'll call it £0.30 to make a box). That's £600 in additional box material, and you still have the same number of band/strap combinations - i.e. there is 0 difference between this way, and the combined boxes.

    The only way this will make any difference to customer model availability is if Apple make more straps than watches. Say, in this instance, they make 400 of each strap. That means twice as many people can have each model - but there are still the same number of watches as before.

    Given that the number of additional straps sold is going to be minimal (how many people here have bought multiple straps), that means you're producing 2000 straps more than what's needed. Say it costs £5 (a fair estimate I think) all in to make a strap, box it, ship it to a store, etc. That's £10,000 in additional outlay, with no additional benefit.

    Apple now has 453 retail stores, so if each store has the same numbers, that would be £4,530,000 in additional costs at launch, and an additional 906,000 straps that you would have to make at launch. Given that we know Apple is already struggling to meet demand, it'd be crazy to make an additional million straps, in addition to the number of watches produced.

    Whilst in theory it would be nice to go in and pick any strap for your watch, when you're talking about the scale in which Apple does business, it becomes unfeasible (if you were doing business, would you spend over 4 and a half million pounds to have two items separate, rather than boxed together? That could pay 150 people's salaries for a year.
  20. atm2626 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 3, 2009

    I think once the dust subtles and we see the smart watch market evolve, you will see that this isn't going to be your typical watch. If the product thrives, it will command a diverse level of customization very similar to that of phone cases.

    Someone said that Apple called this their most personalized product ever. If this is the case the stock strap will be thrown out after a few uses and people will go running to better and more personalized watch accessories.

    Bottom line in my discussion is my disappointment in Apple's inability to stock a vanilla/plain flavor of the watch. To fix this I offered up a suggestion and others have come up with viable solutions too. I just don't think the current Apple method is good enough.
  21. Brian Y macrumors 68040

    Oct 21, 2012
    Don't get me wrong, I agree there are better methods out there. But when you're trying to launch a product like this, on such a large scale, and are obviously having trouble keeping up (deliveries are now backordered by what - 2 months now?) you need to keep it as simple (and cheap) as possible.

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