Apple Watch sales has now gone past the likes of the Rolex or the Omega. Shall we consider it as end of era for premium watches? Let's find out.
While the tech world remained engrossed with the new iPhone X, here is another announcement which largely went unnoticed but is no less exciting and that of Apple emerging as the number one watchmaker in the world. That is no mean feat, as it means, it has edged past some of the biggest names from the entire watch industry, including even Rolex.
That would have been unthinkable even about a decade back when the iPhone was first launched. But then that was when Apple had made the first move, something that culminated into people giving up on their habit of strapping a watch around their wrist.
Interestingly, while the watch makers never really could turn things around in the era of smartphones, what can be considered an offshoot of the latter, smartwatches are only adding to their agony. Put in simple terms, people aren’t buying watches. And if they do, they are buying smartwatches since those can easily gel into an ‘ecosystem’ they have grown used to.
Smartwatches can also be seen as an extension of the smartphones; or at least till the Apple Watch Series 3 was launched. And that’s because the latest iteration of the Apple Watch comes with its own LTE connectivity, thereby letting it function independently without requiring it to be paired to an iPhone.
Apple, however, isn’t revealing how many watches it has sold but it did reveal the growth has been 50 percent over last year’s figures. Also, while Tim Cook had stated they were the number two watch makers in the world last year, he took pride saying they have managed to edge past Rolex to emerge at the top within just a years’ time. That makes it amply clear its Series 2 Apple Watch that did the damage.
The Series 3 Apple Watch meanwhile is also about a lot of other goodies apart from an integrated LTE connectivity. That includes its vastly improved ability as a fitness tracker, to the extent that it can even detect heart arrhythmia. That is on top of the usual stuff that most other fitness trackers already do.
Apple is also claiming a 1.7x improvement in processing capability of the latest Series 3 compared to its predecessor. Battery life is a claimed 18 hours between charges. The watch runs the new watchOS 4. Those apart, the Series 3 watch also include a barometric altimeter to let you have an idea about height. That is on top of the usual stuff like accelerometer, GPS and such.
The Series 3 watch has largely the same exterior as its predecessor, which also includes a 1.65-inch OLED display. However, the device now lets you answer a call directly off it, while Siri too can communicate with you directly off the watch.
All of the above features do make it quite a bit to be packed right onto your wrist, and all for as little as just $399, with data charges applicable extra. In comparison, a Rolex is more akin to a fine piece of jewelry, one that has been exquisitely crafted by some of the most skilled craftsmen the industry might have seen and has that sense of invincibility to it.
However, a Rolex will only show the time and do it flawlessly for years or even decades. The only other thing it does is it adds tremendous value to your wrists, instantly clubbing you to the league of the high and mighty that can effortlessly spend the several thousand dollars that it comes for.
The masses though seem more engrossed with cheaper stuff that can pull off a lot of tasks, tasks that they care about. That includes keeping a tab on their wellbeing. This should explain an ever-growing popularity of the Apple Watch while the likes of Rolex are being relegated to the annals of history.