Apple finally unveiled the prices for each model of the Apple Watch today, including the Apple Watch Sport, the Apple Watch and the Apple Watch Edition, and the two sizes that are available for each. Depending on the model you select, you’re going to have to drop between $349 (the small Apple Watch Sport) or up to $17,000 (the Apple Watch Edition, which starts at $10,000).
Sorry Apple, but I’m sitting this one out.
First, it’s too expensive for my tastes. It’s kind of funny for me to type that because, if you know me, I’m pretty much more than willing to drop money on new technology, if even just to try it out and then return it. I also tend to like luxurious things.
The first problem is that, the model I actually want is the larger of the two Apple Watch sizes, which starts at $600 and ranges up to more than $1,000 depending on the band. I had my heart set on a stainless steel model, but there’s no way I’m spending that much money. Then, if I were to go with the Apple Watch Sport, I’d probably buy the larger of the two models, which is going to set me back at least $400. That’s a lot of cash, and it’s a lot for any piece of technology but particularly for a watch that has a rubber strap.
That brings me to another point: Android Wear is a lot more affordable. You can enter that ecosystem for under $200 if you’re willing to grab one of the first models that hit the market that’s been slightly used, like the G Watch. Or spend a bit more and you can get the Moto 360, which lasts longer than the Apple Watch’s promised battery life of up to 18 hours, features wireless charging, and also has access to plenty of applications. Of course, the drawback there is that Android Wear is only supported by Android.
Except, I think it might be wise of Google, and it’s totally plausible, to open up Android Wear to iOS devices. In such an instance, Google suddenly makes smartwatches available to a huge audience of iPhone owners, and anyone who agrees that the Apple Watch is just a hair too expensive. There’s still another reason I’ll be sitting on the sidelines for the time being.
My wife bought me a watch for our wedding, and I’ve opined that I think Apple and, in general, all smartwatch makers have a big headwind to face. That’s the sentimental value of watches that people already own. Maybe it’s a family heirloom, a nice gold Rolex or, like in my instance, a gift that marks one of the happiest moments of my life. I remember that when I look down at my wrist, and it brings a sense of comfort and a feeling of home, even when I’m thousands of miles away on a business trip.
Sure, if my wife had an Apple Watch and I had one, too, we could send one another our heartbeats. I guess that’s nice. But it doesn’t remind me of the way my wife walked down the aisle and our memories together. And my watch isn’t going to be outdated. I can replace the battery for a couple of bucks, have the strap swapped out every few years, and I’ll still never pay as much as I would buying an Apple Watch.
I’m not here to say the Apple Watch bites and that you shouldn’t buy it. I applaud Apple in its creation of a beautiful piece of technology. I just don’t see myself walking into an Apple Store and plopping down $400 of my own money to get one. At least not anytime soon.