Bloomberg: $10,000-Plus 18-Karat Gold Apple Watch Edition Sales Fizzled After Just Two Weeks

Newjackboy

macrumors 6502a
Aug 6, 2012
527
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I remember the apple cheerleaders when this gold watch was announced. "The celebs and rich will eat this up..you just don't understand" "You're not the target." The Mac Pro disease took over.
I agree it was a joke.

BUT, if this is true "sold in the low tens of thousands" of units" - that is bloody good at $10k+ a pop
 

hybrid_x

macrumors regular
Jan 5, 2004
151
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Teh Interwebz
I'm disappointed that they haven't continued with the white ceramic edition. I was hoping they'd find a way to bring it down in cost and make it part of the regular lineup.
 

apolloa

macrumors G5
Oct 21, 2008
12,138
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Time, because it rules EVERYTHING!
Hahahaha not really surprising is it hahahaha...

A watch with a lump of gold worth what $300 and it wasn’t even pure, plus a leather strap made in some Chinese sweat shop, a PLASTIC packaging box, oh and a mechanism (if you can call it that), mass produced on a Chinese sweet shop factory floor and was the exact same one used in a watch costing $300...

I am still baffled to this day exactly what Apple thought they were going to achieve with this garbage? Not the Watch but the low cost materials And MASSIVELY inflated price?
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The article implies that the gold Apple Watch was a flop, which is a view held by those who don't understand how marketing works. Quite apart from a failure, it was a smashing success because the point was never to sell a large quantity of gold watches, but rather to generate a huge buzz and draw attention to how the Apple Watch was in a very different category than the rest of the smart watch market, including that it could be a high fashion accessory depending on the bands, etc., you chose. Ingenious. All of that was achieved, and that initial introduction kick started the Apple Watch into the tremendous success it is today where it essentially owns the smart watch category.
So your idea of marketing is to generate bad and negative press... riigghhtt....
 
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mannyvel

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Mar 16, 2019
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Which is absolutely nothing to Apple, especially considering it's not even a sustainable product line. Complete waste of time for them and everyone else involved. Future evolved species will look back on that moment and just shake their head at the stupidity of all involved.
You're using the wrong metric for success, which is going to be a problem down the line for Apple.

As a data point, In Q2 2017 Fitbit's revenue was 353 million. So Apple may have come close or matched fitbit's quarterly revenue for that quarter with one product.
 
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Kabeyun

macrumors 68020
Mar 27, 2004
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But the fizzling gold finishes are worth no mention save for the title?

Oh, erm… :oops:
What are you taking about? It’s the sales that “fizzled,” not the finish. And the article says “few after the first two weeks,” so where’s the no-mention?
If you are smart enough to spend 10k on this crap, you are very much deserving the "great experience".
If you’re rich enough to drop $10k on a watch so you can say you’re a fancy gold-plated early adopter, you’re not regretting it in a few years and several dozen expensive watches later. To help you understand the dynamic, pretend you could buy a gold edition AW with that $10 bill in your wallet.
 
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FFR

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What are you taking about? It’s the sales that “fizzled,” not the finish. And the article says “few after the first two weeks,” so where’s the no-mention?

If you’re rich enough to drop $10k on a watch so you can say you’re a fancy gold-plated early adopter, you’re not regretting it in a few years and several dozen expensive watches later. To help you understand the dynamic, pretend you could buy a gold edition AE with that $10 bill in your wallet.
Eloquently put.
 
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Remy149

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Oct 20, 2016
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I’m sure the gold watch was never expected to sell well. It was a statement so the fashion industry would take the Apple Watch seriously as a fashion accessory
 

Vermelho

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Oct 25, 2014
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www.adairproductions.com
It's because she's still wearing it doesn't mean it's not obsolete. Anything Apple product that has been declared unsupported is obsolete. SMH!
No. That's not the meaning of obsolete. I still wear my stainless AW0 every day, and it doesn't need "support". Sure, sw updates ended, but that was a great run while it lasted with 3 significant upgrades to aesthetics, performance and functionality. It still does way more than any other wrist device previous to its introduction. It's been incredibly durable. No scratches on screen, and case still looks good, despite pretty hard usage here (lots of sports, and home renovation).

The current 4th gen is the first that's really tempted me to upgrade, but I haven't made it a priority. Maybe I'll wait for the micro LED version with untethered FaceTime lol
 
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nvmls

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Mar 31, 2011
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If you’re rich enough to drop $10k on a watch so you can say you’re a fancy gold-plated early adopter, you’re not regretting it in a few years and several dozen expensive watches later. To help you understand the dynamic, pretend you could buy a gold edition AE with that $10 bill in your wallet.
You are absolutely right. Enjoy.
 

sw1tcher

macrumors 68000
Jan 6, 2004
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If you are smart enough to spend 10k on this crap, you are very much deserving the "great experience".
I think the few tens of thousands that sold were to people who bought tickets to the Fyre Festival. :D
 
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mi7chy

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Oct 24, 2014
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There are people that bought the Apple watch that the 17K (watch and band) is like pocket change to them. I always wonder how they made their money in the first place being stupid though.
There are three types of wealthy people. The smart, thrifty and inheritance. The thrifty wouldn't even give it a thought while the smart would invest it wisely elsewhere so it's the last of the group that would make such a purchase.
 

Seanm87

macrumors 6502
Oct 10, 2014
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The article implies that the gold Apple Watch was a flop, which is a view held by those who don't understand how marketing works. Quite apart from a failure, it was a smashing success because the point was never to sell a large quantity of gold watches, but rather to generate a huge buzz and draw attention to how the Apple Watch was in a very different category than the rest of the smart watch market, including that it could be a high fashion accessory depending on the bands, etc., you chose. Ingenious. All of that was achieved, and that initial introduction kick started the Apple Watch into the tremendous success it is today where it essentially owns the smart watch category.
Hmmm think you might be stretching a bit there.
 

ToneWilliamsUSA

macrumors newbie
Feb 11, 2019
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Williams now oversees the development of all Apple hardware products, according to the report, and he is widely considered a frontrunner to succeed Tim Cook as CEO when the time comes -- the two share similar backgrounds and mannerisms.
I'm not too sure Apple can withstand a successor like Tim Cook. Apple under Cook reminds me of Apple led by John Sculley. We know how that turned out. Today, Apple has become just another behemoth corporation with the pro-shareholder conservative mindset all corporations eventually succumb to which undermines operations until they fizzle out in one form or another. We might have seen the best days of Apple, it's peak reached not long after the passing of cofounder Steve Jobs. I hope not. I miss the decades of excitement and passion Apple gave me and others as it forged ahead leading the personal computer revolution. At least I was there since the start so got to experience it all. Oh, but to taste that again...
 

Gasu E.

macrumors 601
Mar 20, 2004
4,413
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Not far from Boston, MA.
If you had purchased a gold Rolex, or equivalent, in 2015, it would still run the most current operating system. That is, provided you still have your index finger and thumb.
One way to ensure that all your products have the latest operating system, is to NEVER update the operating system. Simple and effective!
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There are three types of wealthy people. The smart, thrifty and inheritance. The thrifty wouldn't even give it a thought while the smart would invest it wisely elsewhere so it's the last of the group that would make such a purchase.
I don't know about that. Larry Ellison seems to make a lot of big purchases just for the fun of it. He's clearly neither "thrifty" nor "inheritance".
 
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eRondeau

macrumors 65816
Mar 3, 2004
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Apparently no one wants to spend $10,000 on a watch that’ll be obsolete in 2 years. I’m surprised
It won't be "obsolete", it will continue to work just as well as the day it was new. It will not fall apart and it will not stop telling time and running current apps. It will continue to run the same apps as the day it was purchased. The concept of "unlimited free lifetime upgrades" never really existed before Apple. Imagine if you bought a refrigerator in 1990 and several times a year Frigidaire sent a team to your house to upgrade it or replace it with a new one for free! Or expecting a record company to automatically upgrade all your LP's to CD's and then .mp3's when technology changed? Or Chrysler to give you a new model Dakota or 300S every year at no extra charge? Ridiculous isn't it? Well that's what Apple has been doing for a decade now, with regular .1 upgrades and free major OS upgrades. With any other product, you're stuck with it the moment you buy it -- for better or worse. Apple has basically spoiled us to expect free lifetime upgrades (or at least for many years...) and we collectively start hating them when they finally say "Enough's enough, this one's done." If you bought a $10,000 gold Apple Watch you can continue to enjoy it for the rest of your life, and you can pass it down to your children and grandchildren. It will continue to work just like the old wristwatch my grandfather left me continues to tick. I treasure it because it was his, I don't hate it because it was last "upgraded" the day it left the factory. End rant. (:)
 

Robert.Walter

macrumors 68000
Jul 10, 2012
1,532
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People totally miss the purpose of the gold watch.

It was a halo product. It is to draw attention and break down barriers.

It’s only purpose was to build buzz and legitimacy for the rest of the watch line.

It fulfilled this purpose as the prominent early adopters were seen wearing them and then some others followed suit by buying something less than the gold model.

In other words, Ford GT is not a practical car, but it makes the rest of the Ford line look more sexy and sell better.

Re gold watch stuck on an old o/s? That’s the nature of tech, the envelope may look pristine, but the h/w inside is frozen in time. Regardless, the watch still functions fine even on the old o/s. I’ve worn my Omega less than a half dozen times since 2015 because it’s hardware is frozen in time too (and it offers far less functionality than my aluminum Apple Watch does.)
 
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haydn!

macrumors 65816
Nov 10, 2008
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Apple Watch is a fantastic product, but boy did Apple get its initial launch wrong. Targeted completely the wrong audience. But they nailed that from the second one onwards focusing much more on sports and lifestyle users rather than the premium market.
 

Kinotto

macrumors member
May 7, 2018
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The subtract the cost of the raw gold, engineering, manufacturing tooling, quality test, regulatory certifications, security for the distribution network, warranty stock...
He’s talking about revenue, not profit.
All the costs you mention are obviously accounted for to make a % of profit on each unit sold.
 

Zaft

macrumors 68040
Jun 16, 2009
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Apple Watch is a fantastic product, but boy did Apple get its initial launch wrong. Targeted completely the wrong audience. But they nailed that from the second one onwards focusing much more on sports and lifestyle users rather than the premium market.
I never got the commercials of using your watch as a gps while driving or some of the other early commercials.
Apple learned that people are not gonna look at their watches more then the phone. Same reason why a lot of apps have ditched Apple Watch.
 

Shirasaki

macrumors G3
May 16, 2015
9,341
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If you are smart enough to spend 10k on this crap, you are very much deserving the "great experience".
Lol. I wish you could roast this even more brutal. :D

What’s with the click-bait? I thought MacRumors was better than this.

Newsflash: Apple didn’t produce the gold Watch with the expectation of selling a ton of them. Heck they didn’t even talk about it on stage and never marketed it on Apple’s website. But getting it in the pages of Vogue magazine and on the wrists of a few celebrities probably didn’t hurt from a brand standpoint. Just put it down as a marketing expense.
Apple talked about it on WWDC though, briefly.
 
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mikethemartian

macrumors 6502a
Jan 5, 2017
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Melbourne, FL
Which is absolutely nothing to Apple, especially considering it's not even a sustainable product line. Complete waste of time for them and everyone else involved. Future evolved species will look back on that moment and just shake their head at the stupidity of all involved.
I hope future evolved species have more important things to do.
 

homegrownhero

macrumors member
Jul 26, 2017
48
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After reading how Ive wanted the Apple Watch to be more "jewelry" like, I wonder if the 18k gold Watches or Hermes editions are introduced as a protest by Ive or to keep him somewhat happier..?
 
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PickUrPoison

macrumors 601
Sep 12, 2017
4,324
4,587
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Sunnyvale, CA
The $10K Apple Watch Edition was the most pointlessly pretentious thing Apple has ever done. I'm not surprised it was a flop, and had figured Apple learned their lesson from that, but...

...then they released a monitor that needs a $1000 stand. Sigh.
As others have noted, the Edition was a marketing/publicity stunt—which just happened to have generated $200-300 million in sales. As a marketing stunt, it was literally worth 100,000 times it’s weight in gold. Hardly a flop, or pretentious for that matter.

And the display sells to a market that almost certainly does _not_ need a stand. More than likely that stand would ended up on a shelf in a closet somewhere. That’s what would have happened if Apple sold the display with the stand, for $6k—what a waste.

Instead, they priced it at $5k and made the stand optional. The stand will sell in relatively low quantities, so it’ll never reach any economies of scale.
 
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