The Apple Watch doesn’t come out for… well, we don’t even know when it comes out and already there’s one big question on everyone’s mind as elucidated by CNBC’s Evelyn Cheng:
“Is the ‘Watch’ Apple’s Zune moment?” (indirect link and a tip o’ the antlers to @JonyIveParody)
Do words have meaning? Is Desiderata Max Ehrmann’s Blame it on the Rain? Do fascist gnomes sneak into the Macalope’s bread drawer at night to conspire and construct elaborate plots against their tiny free-thinking enemies?
Simply because you can string words together into a sentence does not mean it makes sense. Note that the web page’s title is the more mild “Can Apple’s stock still win without the product hype?” Apparently CNBC’s articles can’t still attract links without the Apple fail hype.
Just for the record, the Zune came out in 2006, five years after the iPod had redefined the digital music player. Microsoft had skated to where the puck had been at a game held five nights earlier. Possibly in a different arena. Apple was just 8 months from releasing the iPhone, a device that would largely supplant the need for digital music players.
So, it’s a tad absurd to claim the Apple Watch is akin to the Zune, when the market for smartwatches is in its infancy. If anything, the Apple Watch is more like the original iPod: It only works with other Apple products and will probably sell slowly until it’s refined.
The Macalope expects future versions of the Apple Watch will remove the requirement for an iPhone. If not, its sales will be limited, and that doesn’t sound like the Tim Cook this mythical beast knows.
Analysts don’t see much potential.
And analysts have never been wrong about Apple.
Even Jim Kelleher at Argus, which has a “buy” rating on Apple, states twice in a recent report that “we do not expect Apple Watch to be a major contributor in 2015, though it rarely pays to underestimate Apple.”
Cheng chooses to ignore the words “in 2015” because time has no meaning when discussing either already failed future Apple products or already successful future products from Apple’s competitors.
“It’s not going to matter at all unless it has enough utility” for millions of smartwatches, said Brian Blair of Rosenblatt Securities, noting that putting Google Glass on fashion show runways didn’t help that product’s sales.
Not that the Apple Watch isn’t pricey, but Google Glass is $1,500. And you wear it on your face, providing all the modern fashion appeal of Deep Space Nine cosplay.
How well will the Apple Watch sell? ¯_(ツ)_/¯ It seems just as presumptuous to declare 2015 the year of the Apple Watch as to declare the Watch Apple’s Zune.
Well, OK, the latter seems worse. But they’re both wild speculation at this point.