There has been a lot of speculation about the prices of the soon-to-be-announced Apple Watch. We know that the Apple Watch Sport will start at $349, but have no idea about the prices of the other models. Some people are speculating that the Apple Watch edition will cost $10,000, or even $20,000. I don’t think so.
Here are my predictions for prices for the Apple Watch.
• Apple Watch Sport: We already know that this model will start at $349. This includes a basic, plastic watchband. It’s not clear whether Apple will charge a different price for each of the two sizes; most people think they will, but I find that a bit odd. It would be, in essence, a sex penalty: if you’re a man, with a larger wrist, you’re likely to buy the larger model. Should you have to pay more? If there is a difference in price between the two sizes, I don’t think it will be more than $50, so the larger model would cost $399.
• Apple Watch: The middle of the line Apple Watch differs from the Apple Watch Sport in its casing (stainless steel vs. aluminum), and its crystal (sapphire vs. glass). As such, it will be more expensive. But I think it will come in at under $500. Again, it’s not clear whether the two sizes will be priced differently, but, if they are, think $499/$549. However, I assume that the base model will come with a plastic watchband; others will be add-ons. Expect watchbands to start at $100, and maybe cost several hundred for the fanciest ones.
• Apple Watch Edition: This is where there’s a lot of speculation. Apple is clearly targeting the luxury market with this watch, advertising in magazines like Vogue, and planning (according to rumors or leaks) pop-up shops in major department stores. However, there’s nothing special about the Apple Watch Edition, other than its gold case, and what seems to be a stock leather band.
The Apple Watch Edition is not a luxury watch; it’s just a gold-cased version of the cheaper watch. There’s nothing exclusive about it, nothing special. It’s not like more expensive watches where you pay for complex machinery. Yes, there is gold; that will make it more expensive than the other models. But not that much. Estimates of the cost of the gold suggest that the metal would cost less than $1,000.
As such, I think the list price for the base model Apple Watch Edition will be $1,999. There will certainly be a price differential by size, and it could be a couple hundred dollars for this version. In addition, the watchbands will cost as much as several hundred dollars. There’s just no reason to pay more. I repeat, this is not a luxury watch; this is a smartwatch with a gold case.
So, to sum up, here are my predictions:
Apple Watch Sport: $349/$399
Apple Watch: $499/$549
Apple Watch Edition: $1,999/$2,199