Will Apple Disrupt the Luxury Watch Market?

apple watch

This article talks about how Apple’s new Apple Watch could disrupt various industries, including the fitness wearable and luxury watch industries. Apple’s low-end Apple Watch Sport will likely disrupt the fitness wearable industry, while the higher end Apple Watch and Apple Watch Edition will be more likely be disruptors for the luxury watch industry. Tim Cook is not just looking to create another smartwatch; he sees this as a move for Apple to enter the luxury fashion industry.

It appears that the luxury watch industry does not feel threatened by Apple’s newest device. Sebastian Vivas, director of a watch museum maintained by Swiss watch manufacturer, Audemars Piguet, says “We’re not afraid; we’re just a little bit smiling.”

Is the luxury watch industry underestimating the threat of the Apple Watch? Do you think there are other industries that should also prepare to be disrupted by the Apple Watch?

5 Responses to Will Apple Disrupt the Luxury Watch Market?

  • I do think that the watch industry is underestimating the apple watch a bit. I don’t think that it can compete with true luxury watches (Cartier, Rolex, etc), because if someone wants a watch covered in diamonds that they saw someone famous wearing, they aren’t gonna go for the Apple Watch. However, there is a bit of a cult surrounding Apple and everything they produce, so I think that a lot of people will buy an Apple Watch just because it’s an Apple product. I absolutely think the fitness wearables industry should be worried, as the Apple Watch Sport, if priced competitively, far outranks the competition in terms of functionality.

  • I genuinly do not think that the Apple watch will disrupt the watch industry. Even though they are trying to with the Gold Apple Watch, I feel that they are two different customer bases. There is an art to a mechanical watch which a lot of customers see as value. I think if Apple is trying to disrupt the watch industry, then Tesla trying to attract customers who drive manual cars is a good analogy. Even though it is possible, I think we are very far from that occurring.

  • I agree with Dan. I don’t believe Apple can disrupt the luxury watch market. A smartwatch has a life cycle, a watch by Rolex or Omega does not. You are expected to purchase a new smartwatch when the next iteration comes around, while the value of the luxury watch increases as it ages. Apple watches may be more functional, but no one buys a mechanical watch for it’s functionality.
    As for the fitness wearable angle? I agree, Apple’s brand name in technology products can move mountains and this is one of them.

  • I do not think Apple will disrupt the luxury watch industry because they are different customer segments. When I think of a luxury watch I think of high end classy watch that you would wear to work or if you are going somewhere nice. For Apple to create a luxury watch, thats more technologically based. The apple watch has a lot more functions and you can do a lot more. I think Apple will take away the meaning of a luxury watch. Its more for a fashion statement rather than a watch that does everything from a touch of a finger.

  • I don’t think the luxury watch industry should feel threatened by Apple’s new watch. People who buy luxury watches, like Rolex, are going for a particular look or style, which Apple’s smart watch will not be able to compete with. Some luxury watches also appreciate in value over time while an Apple smart watch will only depreciate over time as its technology and capabilities become obsolete. Wearing this smart watch would also convey the wrong message over time. People wear luxury watches as a status symbol, a nice Rolex 20 years ago will most likely still be looked at as a fine watch now. Where as a first generation smart watch would be looked at as a low end watch.

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