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Steve Wozniak Is Worried About the Apple Watch | San Antonio Express

Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak recently criticized the Apple Watch during an “Ask Me Anything” sess ion on the popular social news site  Reddit. “I love my Apple Watch,” wrote Woz, “but it’s taken us into a jewelry market, where you’re going to buy a watch between $500 or $1,100 based on how important you think you are as a person.”

He also noted that “the only difference is the band in all those watches,” and that its tiered pricing strategy did not represent “the company that Apple was originally, or the company that really changed the world a lot.”

The luxury strategy pays off

Many critics panned the Apple Watch’s design, functionality, and price when it launched last April. Yet the Apple Watch reportedly accounted for 52% of all worldwide smartwatch shipments last year, according to Juniper Research. Alphabet’s Android Wear only accounted for 10% of all shipments, although Android runs on the majority of smartphones worldwide.

The key difference between Apple and Google’s smartwatch strategies is that Apple makes both the hardware and software, while Google depends on other hardware makers to do the heavy lifting. The problem was that none of those hardware makers — like Lenovo’s Motorola, Huawei, or Asus — had the brand appeal to sell a watch that cost over $200. Android users also have a reputation of being more frugal with both handset and app purchases — hardly an ideal customer base for pricey smartwatch offerings.

IDC estimates that Apple sold 13 million Apple Watches last year — an impressive number but far less than the 21 million the firm originally forecast. At an average price of $500, that would equal just 3% of Apple’s 2015 revenue. IDC believes that Apple will ship 45 million Apple Watches annually by 2019, which would considerably increase the device’s share of the top line.

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Steve Wozniak Is Worried About the Apple Watch – San Antonio Express-News.

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