Why the Apple Watch can afford to cost thousands of dollars

“Would you pay thousands of extra dollars for an Apple gadget made of gold?” Sam Byford asks for The Verge.

“The company is betting that at least some people will. Its Apple Watch Edition is made from 18-karat gold and will likely be very expensive — think thousands of dollars expensive — despite offering little to no extra functionality over the aluminum and steel models,” Byford reports. “Who would pay for such a thing? Well, just ask Vertu.”

“A British manufacturer of ultra-premium phones, Vertu is the first nominally ‘tech’ company to acknowledge the market for luxury electronics. It’s one of the first tech companies to understand that people don’t buy $4,000 Hermès handbags to improve their ability to carry things. (Leica is another.) Apple may have the high end of the conventional smartphone market almost to itself, but the Apple Watch Edition will be marketed to a well-heeled demographic of technology users that Vertu understands all too well,” Byford reports. “‘These are people that will never even consider a watch that uses aluminum,’ says creative director Ignacio Germade of Vertu’s clientele. ‘Our customers aren’t satisfied with plastic or aluminum or a product that has Gorilla Glass. They want something that matches the rest of the products that they own. If they have sapphire on their watch, they want to have sapphire on their phone.’ … ‘No one needs a Rolls-Royce — we are very open about that,’ the esteemed British carmaker told The Verge this year. ‘These are purchases of the heart.'”

Much more in the full article here.

34 Comments

    1. you are right 100%

      i finally saw the light and figured it out…

      obama really is a socialist/communist/red herring and all the rest….

      he is just doing it via political jujitsu… by giving wall street everything it wants, he knows they will destroy america from within.

      remember it wasn’t some sophisticated socialist/commie plot that crashed our economy and quite nearly that of he entire industrialized world.

      it was greed-head capitalist bankers on wall street who bought bill clinton and congress and pushed thru deregulation of wall street and set the stage for what we endured.

      obama bailed them out, refused to prosecute, and now backs the republican agenda to undo the recently put into place re-regulation.

      the man is a genius !

      must be the sneaky post colonial kenyan in him, as pat buchanan tried to warn us of.

      how could i have been so blind to his perfidious genius ?

      i hang my head in shame !! please forgive me charles krauthammer and sean hannity

      1. Dear dr.

        Opps watching too much Fox again are we???

        You must remember that Both Clinton and Bush allowed the relaxed rules that allowed the Banks to crush America. Pres. Obama has done some weird things but he came in to office in the middle of this.

        As it turns out, to see what a President does, wait 4 years or so and see how the country is running. And speaking of running, we are actually running much better than when Obama came into office. Just saying.

        1. eldernorn, you may have missed the two or three times that Bush tried to push back on the relaxed (read: stupid) real estate laws that contributed so much to crashing the market in 2008. And the Congress that was having none of it.

    2. “When you see that trading is done, not by consent, but by compulsion — when you see that in order to produce, you need to obtain permission from men who produce nothing – when you see money flowing to those who deal, not in goods, but in favors – when you see that men get richer by graft and pull than by work, and your laws don’t protect you against them, but protect them against you – when you see corruption being rewarded and honesty becoming a self-sacrifice – you may know that your society is doomed.”

  1. I will only pay more than $1000 if there is some added functional benefit beyond just cosmetic appeal. If there are some added benefits, I will purchase the most functional watch. However, without those features I will keep the cap at $1000 until I know more about what the cadence will be on product refreshes.

    1. It will be pretty hard to predict any cadence until the third or fourth Apple Watch.

      Will they upgrade every year? Every other year? Distinctive new look with each release, every other release, or stick with a good look and mostly update internals like they did with MacBook Air? Nobody knows…

      Even Apple won’t know what the right cadence is for a watch for some time to come.

    2. I hope you are wrong. I’d like to think that ultra cool technology is available to all and not just to the super rich who can afford anything.
      I dont give a s**t about gold but I would like to think that the functions are all based on the same chip and not disabled for the masses just to give the rich pricks bragging rights.

  2. I ain’t paying thousands for an Apple, especially a 1st edition model. I will buy the low cost AppleWatch 1st Generation & probably upgrade next Generation AppleWatch.

  3. I own several solid gold watches. I have watch from my grandfather. A quality watch will last generations. An apple watch is technology that will be outdated in a year. Gold cased technology, no thanks.

        1. Apple?! Are you friggen kidding?
          They will sell it to you at an outrageous prices. In a few years it won’t be supported by the latest iOS and you are stuck with it.

          1. Well, compared to literally everyone else, Apple is the only one you can expect to support your device when all others have long abandoned theirs. From original Macs, through OS X, to iOS, all Apple devices were supported for at least four years and four subsequent OS versions. Even when the device is long discontinued and cannot be purchased anymore, it can still run newer versions of OS.

            Compare that to all other platforms (desktop or mobile), where the latest OS can be run on devices no older than one or two years.

            Apple gives you twice the hardware lifespan of competitors.

  4. Unlike a “Rolex,” the technology in an Apple Watch will become out-dated quickly. The ultra-rich could probably afford to pay a few thousand bucks for the newest gold model every year, but for the “merely-rich” (and everyone else), Apple can have a special “recycling” program. Trade-in an older gold Apple Watch to get the latest gold Apple Watch (of the same size) at a substantial discount. Apple can have the casing melted down and re-use the gold alloy. Over time, Apple Watch will become thinner and lighter, so Apple will end up collecting back more gold then it uses for the next gen Apple Watch.

  5. TOP OF THE LINE – Gold, Saphire face, Max’d out controls and fanciest packaging and band you can find on the planet – LESS TAHN OR EQUAL TO THE BASE LINE iPhone.

    IF the pricing model exceeds thee specs.. Apple Watch WILL FAIL.

  6. TOP OF THE LINE – Gold, Saphire face, Max’d out controls and fanciest packaging and band you can find on the planet – LESS THAN OR EQUAL TO THE BASE LINE iPhone.

    IF the pricing model exceeds thee specs.. Apple Watch WILL FAIL.

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