OPINION: Apple Watch - creating a niche market for wearable technology

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Mote is a junior French major from Indianapolis.
CHRISTA SCHROEDEL / THE DEPAUW

Yesterday, Apple announced that their highly anticipated watch will be available  for “pre-order + preview” on April 10th and officially goes on sale April 24th. 

The price point for the Apple Watch Sport starts at $349, while the Apple Watch will start at $549. The company will also introduce an 18-karat rose gold Apple Watch Edition starting at $10,000 and reaching up to $17,000. 

Even if you have enough disposable income and a nagging intention to purchase a luxury smart watch, the ultra-expensive Edition will only be available in “select stores.” The mystery of its availability is only a drop in the ocean of questions I’d like to know the answer to.

Even after the announcement of the watch’s various features including water resistance and 18-hours of normal battery life, I’m left with an overwhelming feeling that specifically the Edition is not a watch created for most people. It’s a watch made for the high-end wearable technology market. In other words, it’s a fashion statement that only the elite will express. 

Apple wants to push the limit to the value of a luxury smart watch and that is evident by the impressive technology in every style of the watch. However, it could still be argued that they’re not pushing the value far enough in terms of technological advancement. Instead, Apple is creating a niche market for the Edition.

Aside from my thoughts on the Edition, I’d love to see an even longer battery life as well as GPS in all of the Apples Watches. An independence from the iPhone’s Bluetooth tether (to use certain features) would also be nice, but I imagine that it’d be hard to fit all of that functionality inside the watch at this point in its developmental future.

Apple has a chance to take hold of the wearable technology market with the Apple Watch. If you choose to purchase, I’d suggest the more reasonably priced Sport or Watch style. To put it in perspective: for a base-model Edition at $10,000, you could also buy a combination of 7.7 of the new silver, space gray or gold MacBooks.