Consumers got their first opportunity for a hands-on experience with the Apple Watch on Friday. Interested parties could secure appointments through the Apple website for a try-on session for the various Apple Watches available for pre-order. If you were one of Apple’s customers who made the cut for the first round of Apple Watches scheduled to arrive by May 8, consider yourself fortunate. The watches are in high demand, and supply is short.
According to a report in Digital Trends, the initial order of Apple Watches were cut by almost half due to a manufacturing issue with the watch’s display. This further limited what was anticipated to be an already limited supply of the much-awaited tech-piece, and the first batch of the Apple Watch sold out within 30 minutes.
Though pre-orders were generally done online, crowds were in full force at Apple Stores on Friday. Potential Apple Watch customers filled stores from San Francisco to the United Kingdom to get intimate with the Apple Watch and see which model is the right fit.
According to Business Insider, prices vary greatly depending on which model of the Apple Watch you choose. The Apple Watch Sport starts at $349 and features a polymer band with an aluminum and glass display. The “regular” Apple Watch has a wider variety of bands and the display is constructed of steel and sapphire glass, which offers greater durability and scratch-resistance; it starts at $549. The Apple Watch Edition, which is made of gold, starts at $10,000 but can go as high as $17,000.
Because the watch mechanism itself is essentially the same across the board, offering the same features regardless of model, most prognosticators are predicting the bulk of Apple Watch sales to be for the least expensive Apple Watch Sport, with others models catering to customers who don’t mind paying a premium for upgraded materials.
Apple Watch supplies should steadily level out with demand as manufacturing kinks get worked out, and initial shipments of pre-orders are satisfied. According to BGR, it is unclear as to when the Apple Watch will be available in stores for regular walk-in customers. It is also expected that Apple will delay the release of initial sales numbers, as they are anticipated to be lower than originally projected due to fewer Apple Watches available for sale.
[Photo courtesy of Justin Sullivan/Getty Images]