Apple Watch orders fell sharply after the first day and haven’t grown since, shopping data firm says

“Apple Watch pre-orders started with a bang and Apple’s initial inventory quickly sold out,” Dan Frommer reports for Quartz. “Then US orders immediately fell, and have remained mostly flat since, according to analysis from Slice Intelligence, a company that tracks US consumer spending through e-commerce email receipts.”

“Apple has taken orders for almost 2.5 million watches in the US through Monday, May 18, according to Slice’s projections, which are based on more than 14,000 online shoppers,” Frommer reports. “More than half of those orders were placed on April 10, the first day Apple accepted watch pre-orders in the US and eight other countries, according to Slice.”

“Since the first day… US orders have generally remained under 30,000 per day, according to Slice’s projections,” Frommer reports. “One Wall Street analyst, Morgan Stanley’s Katy Huberty, recently increased her projection of first-year global Apple Watch shipments to 36 million, based on survey results showing increased purchase intentions among US consumers… To reach 36 million shipments, Apple would need to average almost 100,000 per day worldwide.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Of course there was a surge of orders from the innovators and the early adopters. For any successful product, there usually is.

The Apple Watch supply problem has caused a pause. Most of those early adopters are still just getting or haven’t even received their Apple Watches yet. So the third wave, the early majority, haven’t yet experienced their impetus to go get/order their Watches: Seeing them in use on the wrists of the innovators/early adopters. Plus, the well-publicized lack of demand (no availability for a month or longer) also causes the next wave to pause. They can’t get them online or in stores, so in their minds, there’s no rush.

Therefore, Apple Watch is in pause mode until the early adopters get their Watches, show them off, and until Apple actually gets Watches into retail stores so that people can actually buy them and walk out with them.


  1. The Apple Watch has had a long buildup. What some people consider early adopters / innovators may actually include the first signs of early majority. The definition / hair splitting is in the state of mind of the buyer. If the early majority person has been aware of the Watch for some time and then makes a decision to buy, this is early majority. The innovator / early adopter makes the decision faster. The result is: the time of purchase is not by itself precise enough to reveal the category of buyer.

    1. Lack of in store inventory and long waits for online orders probably aren’t helping things either. As more get into the hands of early adopters, and they sing the praises of WATCH louder, and inventory is available in store … sales will grow.

      1. Exactly. Why place an order you know won’t be filled for 2 months? Plus, by then you’ll have gone to an Apple Store, tried on an Watch, and fell even more in love with it. But those people will simply buy one later once they become widely available.

        1. OMG I love it instantly!! Set up was a breeze and cool iPhone-Watch interconnect stuff be happenin’! They’re going to sell a lot more of these as the word keeps getting out and those with Watches now become walking demo’s and promoters of this new device. Early adoption rules!!

    2. Excuses, excuses!

      This product was a straight FAIL from the word “go”.

      Let’s see, let’s pay $17-grand for a gold watch that actually uses about $900 worth of gold. Or lets pay thousands for a stainless steel version that only costs $80 to make. Or lets pay hundreds for an aluminum model that scratches easy, has sensors that fail, can’t work with tatoos, won’t charge properly, wont ship… and the BONUS FEATURE… it’s completely useless without an iPhone that can do everything it does plus thousands of other things it doesn’t, while doing all of those things about a million times better and faster.

      Where do I pre-order?


      1. Just out of curiosity … why does this product irritate you so much? You seem to be in comments section of every WATCH story on MDN, spreading this vitriol.

        I seriously want to know what has you so irritated about it, that you spend what appears to be lots of your free time attacking it at every opportunity.

        1. @iFan

          Frankly… I feel that Apple is DEAD!!!!!

          Since Jobs passed away, I hardly recognize this company. It slowly started with the keynote speeches. Then after iOS 6, the horrible releases in and bugs that came with iOS 7 and 8. Then the stupid Tim Cook things started happening. The iMac launch debacle, the stupid new lightning adapter that killed off an entire product industry, the iPad Mini released without Retina, all the irrelevant gay announcements… and the list is virtually endless.

          Now with these two retarded product releases (a Macbook with one port for basically the same price as much better Apple machines), and finally, the worst and most RETARDED product in history, the ever stupid Apple Watch.

          That’s why I slam it every chance I get.

          Jobs was an icon, Cook is multi-colored joke!

          1. “That’s why I slam it every chance I get.”

            You know how some people die of stress-induced hearth attacks while others, in the same job, are fine. It’s how they deal with the stress that is different.

            You’ve heard the saying, “You are what you eat”. I like to modify that to, “You are what you train, think, feel.”

            You’re building and making your life and yourself, day by day – with all your thoughts and feelings. For the sake of your health, get the fuck over it, move on, and build yourself a good life.

          2. Guess what Orandy, Steve Jobs is dead. He was truly one-of-a-kind, and human cloning doesn’t exist yet.

            WTF did you expect?

            You also need some perspective. There were quite a few “Stupid Steve Jobs things” that happened under his watch you choose to ignore: Apple Lisa failed. Mac Cube was a fiasco. He thought the shi**y hockey puck iMac mouse was a good thing. Steve trusted Eric Schmidt and Google, costing Apple most likely hundreds of billions of $ in the mobile phone market, iMaps was launched under Steve Jobs. A very bug filled MobileMe was launched under Jobs. Steve hired John Scully and almost killed the company. I’m sure that anyone inside Apple can fill pages of small mistakes that he made. He was human, he was a genius, he still F’d up from time to time. He was not a god.

            I think that the “irrelevant gay announcements” bother you most of all, and you should probably delve into your repressed urges with a therapist.

        2. He’s not irritated. He’s being paid … because if he isn’t being paid, then I would venture to say that he’s (I assume) is a sad person because he has no life outside being bitter over a product he feels compelled to complain about again and again and again and again and…….

      2. Oh, Randy 🙂
        I won’t dignify your post by offering responses to correct your incorrect, inflammatory baits. Simply put, I have reduced the number of times I take my iPhone from my pocket by about 75%, simply by glancing at texts, reminders, and THE TIME. It may be that your computer usage is strongly misaligned with what the Watch does for others like me. But please back away from the lectern and let others on the Apple-centric blog, have fun and share brotherhood. Happy Memorial Day. Pause and give thanks to those who gave their lives for our freedom.

        1. @dan

          So let me get this right Dan, you paid hundreds of dollars for an iPhone, only to pay hundreds of dollars more not to have to pull it out your pocket, for a device that does a fraction of what your iPhone does?

          Has your IQ been tested? Either you’re a genius or a moron, my money’s on the latter rather than the former.

          1. I’m thinking about buying an Apple Watch. Hmmm. Should I go with the millions of happy purchasers and all the glowing reviews or with orandy? Happy millions… or orandy? What a conundrum!

  2. i’m generally skeptical of anal-ysts who predict sales without taking the time to capture JAM coefficients, NUT trajectories, or adjust +- for BUN.

    But… that’s what get’s reported…

    1. @squiggles

      With a name like “Squiggles”, it’s not hard to imagine where and how frequently your NUT trajectories are landing.

      Can we have a little more BS with your comments?

      1. So this is all you have in your arsenal, orandy – unadulterated hatred, expressed as gay-bashing, delusions of your own superior intelligence, and irrational personal attacks. Sad.

  3. The Apple Watch intro is a disaster. The device should have been announced June 15 with immediate availability. This is yet another mistake by Tim Cook. He’ll be gone in 3 years when folks like the editors at MDN finally see the light.

    1. Steve Jobs was an amazing leader of Apple. The anal-ists beat down Apple afterwards thinking nobody could fill Steve’s shoes. But Steve as always, had the vision to pick the right man to take Apple to the next level.
      Tim Cook has actually even surpassed Steve in some ways that were lacking under Steve. But Steve built the Apple team by picking all the right people to do all the right stuff.
      Tim just needed to get in this custom Lamborghini created by Steve and drive the hell out of it. Now you can’t even see the competition through the rear view mirror. I love the way he zigzags around all the road kill too.

    2. Disaster? That is just plain silly. Could it have been better from the customers standpoint? Absolutely. However, I think Apple’s introduction makes perfect sense from a business standpoint. The way they introduced the watch allowed Apple to get a feel for inventory – get a gauge for how many they would need to produce daily. Remember, this is not an iPhone, it is a totally new product and a new market. Tim is a genius at inventory. The Apple Watch rollout is genius from an inventory standpoint.

    3. So, where are all the sales numbers for the Microsoft Band? Where are all the dicks bitching and moaning about low sales and availability of the Microsoft Band? Why only focus on AppleWatch? I’m only saying if pundits are going to be critical, why not also be critical over other companies’ products. If you think Microsoft did a better job with the Microsoft Band, show me the numbers. Wall Street and the news media have some serious hate working over anything Apple does. Other companies are completely given a free pass.

  4. Doesn’t surprise me at all. Personally I’m not 100% sold yet and as such am in no hurry, I’m perfectly happy with my current options to wait and see exactly how app developers tailor things, and even what Apple does with the next generation. The iPhone and perhaps to a lesser extent allowed us to do things in a way that were essentially impossible to do before. I can still do pretty much everything an Apple watch does without one, it’s just a different way of doing it. I would not be remotely surprised if it explodes with the 2nd gen once people are confident in it and that it isn’t just a gimmick.

  5. I’m kinda interested in the “email receipts” they use to track this data. I ordered a watch a couple weeks ago and haven’t received a receipt, since they haven’t charged my card. They only do that when they ship.

    1. You raise a very good point about the lack of a receipt until time of shipment that I hadn’t even considered.

      One of my thoughts was that the buyer base at this point is skewed heavily toward early adopter Apple loyalists, many of whom are using iCloud email accounts that this company can’t see.

      I am very skeptical about the accuracy of the methodology used and the conclusions they are drawing. Their data is generated from a self selected cohort that uses their shopping utility. As this is a new product with no historical sales data, I don’t know how they can correlate the data they collect to actual sales.

      Per their website:”Slice Intelligence uses a proprietary technology that was developed by machine-learning scientists from Stanford University who set out to solve a very difficult data problem: how to mine the mammoth volume of unstructured online shopping data from e-mail receipts from hundreds of thousands of retailers. The solution was a technology that automatically identifies e-receipts within inboxes, extracts every available data point about every purchase at the item level, normalizes measurements across retailers and structures the data into an industry-wide taxonomy and catalog. All this happens at high speed and accuracy, and is reported daily.

      Slice Intelligence has the largest panel of online shoppers, which it recruits through partners who leverage the Slice API to create new online experiences and through the popular Slice shopping utility which allows shoppers to organize, track and manage their online purchases. Slice users value these benefits, and show it in the form of high ratings and very low user churn compared to traditional research pan”

    2. I’m interested in the “email receipts” angle as well, since “Slice” or whatever it is certainly doesn’t have access to my email. Sounds like they only have access to the emails of users who have for some stupid reason decided that Slice should be able to read and track their emails.

      1. It seems you actually have to link their App to your email account that you receive the merchant notifications through. So this doesn’t necessarily catch every user’s purchase if the don’t have all their email linked to the Slice account. You have a self-selecting survey pool as well as inconsistent collection methodology. I’d like to see the their justification as to how this is a particularly robust statistical analysis.

  6. Why order online right now? Someday soon the Watch will be in stores and Apples online probable ship date is about the same, or later. Unless you have no access to an Apple Store, just wait a bit and see one in person before you buy.

    OTOH, if the Watch shows up in stores before my first day order is shipped, I will be very unhappy. But they have revised my ship date from June to late May, so hope springs eternal they are still under promising and it may ship real soon now.

  7. I’ve got zero interest in the watch even if it were only $99 so personally I think it’s going to end up being a so so product. I think Apple’s outrageous pricing for the bands is what’s turning many people off. Hopefully it will be a success but there’s no way it will ever approach the success of the iPhone.

    Too many people have moved beyond wearing a watch.

    1. Let me try that logic…

      I’ve got HUGE interest in the watch at current prices so personally I think it’s going to end up being a mind-blowing, game-changing product.

      1. Putting the sarcasm aside we just have different perspectives. I don’t see people spending that kind of money upgrading their iPhone and watch on a regular basis. I don’t think that most people have that kind of disposable income. In the short term curiosity and the desire to have the latest new toy will get some people to stretch their finances but long term I think people will decide that they can’t afford both and the iPhone is more important. Different story for those that have enough disposable income.

        The watch will never be the game changer that the iPhone was no matter how much the fanboys want it to be. At least not until it’s a standalone product that’s not dependent on the iPhone.

    2. It’s not a “watch” dummy. It’s a ultra small microcomputer with an incredibly powerful interface. And its evolution will make it a must have iPhone companion in a few years if not by Christmas this year.😱🎉👍😃💥

      1. It’s a novelty. When the novelty wears off the demand will also. If it were a standalone product instead of an accessory then it might take off but most people will grow weary of upgrading an expensive phone and expensive accessory on a regular basis.

    1. That’s not even a half a billion dollars, so no, it’s not good enough. Just remember all Wall Street is interested in is moving Apple’s needle and those numbers won’t do it. If it was another company it would be considered a huge success, but for Apple that’s considered a failure. That’s how it is, so get used to it. Apple is dealing with investors who have insatiable amounts of greed, so nothing less than the impossible will satisfy them.

      1. Perfection is known to be “impossible.” The quest for perfection is noble and necessary to our collective survival. Leaders and winners understand this. Underachievers call it greed.

  8. I agree what Apple wanted was to get as many watches in the hands of devs/innovators, especially with WWDC coming up.

    The mass market uptake will come after that and by then the supply will be resolved.

  9. Does this mean the company is tracking everyone’s email or just those who agree to have theirs tracked?
    Th first is a huge invasion of privacy and the second may not be very representative.

    1. It’s just Slice users who opt in to being monitored. But the upside of being a Slice user like me is it’s incredibly convenient to have Slice do all the work of tracking all your online orders. You should try it.😃

      1. Or use Deliveries app to track all your purchases, which then sync to the app on all your iOS devices and Macs. It works great, and you don’t have to give away your data to another company. I’ve never heard anything about their selling your data.

  10. Apple will sell more AppleWatches than all other companies’ smartwatches combined and it still won’t be good enough to boost Apple’s value. Apple might as well be trying to drain the Pacific Ocean with an eyedropper if the object was to impress Wall Street.

    I think Apple basically tried to build a decent product consumers would like, buy and be useful to them, but that doesn’t seem to cut it anymore. There only seems to be some crazy race for one company to outsell the other and that’s really a poor goal for selling products. Wall Street seems to be anti-consumer and it’s a poor way to run the country.

  11. Some people just don’t want to wait. This can go two ways. They can’t wait to get their hands on the product and will either:

    1. Order it immediately, and then find comfort in knowing they’ll get the watch as soon as possible, or

    2. They WILL wait until the watch is available for sale with no wait times and then order it, knowing they haven’t committed the cash until they can immediately have the watch without any delay.

    So right now it’s just in an in between phase where Apple is catching up on orders before another surge will come when they are fully caught up.

  12. If you listen to all the hype, the Apple Watch is destined to become the most wildly successful Apple product EVER. I have never believed that for even a single moment. Nor do I believe that it will “fail”. The reality will almost certainly be somewhere in between.

    1. I don’t know if anyone said it would be the most successful product by Apple EVER, it might be the fastest selling in the first year on the market, but it’s technically impossible to be more successful in total than at least the iPhone, given the watch requires an iPhone, so for every watch there will also be at least one iPhone at minimum, and that’s just the latest model iPhones that support it.

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