Apple Watch pre-orders surge past one million on opening weekend

Apple Watch orders have passed one million in the opening weekend

Apple Watch pre-orders passed the one million mark on the opening weekend, as Apple appears to have yet another market winner with its wearable device.

Data from shopping research firm Slice Intelligence estimated 957,000 people in the US. pre-ordered an Apple Watch on Friday. With customers in Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan and the UK also able to pre-order devices from Friday the figure will undoubtedly be over one million.

Slice Intelligence said that based on e-recepits of 9,080 online shoppers Apple Watch buyer ordered an average of 1.3 watches, spending $504 per watch. Those ordering the cheaper Apple Watch Sport spent $383 per watch and those ordering the Apple Watch spent $707.

The demand has already hit order times with delivery already pushed back to June for some models.

Apple said that those interested in trying the Apple Watch can visit a store for a “personalised session” to try on, fit and size their band, and understand how the Apple Watch works.

The Apple Watch will start at £299 for the Sport version, rising to £479 to £949 for the standard Watch versions, and £8,000 to as high as £13,500 for the Apple Watch Edition.

Devices will go on sale from 24 April in Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, the UK and the US. The top-end Apple Watch Edition will be available only in limited numbers from selected retail outlets.

Angela Ahrendts, Apple’s senior vice president of retail and online stores, said that the firm is looking forward to showing off the device.

“We are excited to welcome customers tomorrow and introduce them to Apple Watch, our most personal device yet,” she said.

“Based on the tremendous interest from people visiting our stores, as well as the number of customers who have gone to the Apple Online Store to mark their favourite Apple Watch ahead of availability, we expect that strong customer demand will exceed our supply at launch.”

Demand for the Apple Watch is expected to kick-start the wearables market and drive sales to as high as 46 million units by the end of 2015. Apple is expected to account for around half of these.

The device itself is expected to last for around 18 hours per charge, and will run apps such as ESPN, Twitter, Facebook, Shazam, Salesforce and CNN in conjunction with an iPhone.

The watch can also be used to interact with terminals, such as aircraft boarding pass scanners, and can use the Apple Pay system, paired with an iPhone, to allow users to purchase goods via their wrist.

Early reviews have been mostly favourable. Some explained that once you’ve worked out how to use the Apple Watch it becomes “bliss”, while others said that it finally shows the point of a smartwatch.

However, there is also a feeling that the Apple Watch doesn’t solve any specific need or problem, and suffers from limited apps, battery life of only one day, and the oddness of holding a watch to your face to make calls.

Despite these gripes it seems likely that Apple fans will willingly splash out, which will no doubt pose questions for businesses faced with workers wearing smartwatches, akin to the smartphone revolution of the past five or so years, also kick-started by Apple with the iPhone.

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13 April 2015 | 8:29 am – Source: v3.co.uk

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