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The Apple Watch’s Big Pricing Problem | HBR

That wide range of options results in a wide range of prices. The Watch will cost from $349 (aluminum case, rubber band) to $17,000 (18 karat gold case, leather band with brass buckle).

I’m not a tech reviewer, so I haven’t actually worn or tried out a demo version of the Watch, as some early tech reviewers have. But based on what I’ve read so far, I’d grade the Watch an A for ambition and a D for pricing strategy.

First, the positives: The Watch continues Apple’s tradition of technology excellence, but brings the company into a new market realm — fashion. Apple realizes that watches, far more than smartphones, are an expression of the owner. New York fashionistas, Midwest executives, Hollywood celebrities – they all have unique tastes and therefore wear different watches. Apple rolled big on this release by trying to serve the wide and varied consumer market instead of producing a utilitarian smartphone accessory targeted towards technology wonks. That’s a level of ambition I admire.

Its pricing strategy, in contrast, will create major hurdles to long-term success.

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The Apple Watch’s Big Pricing Problem.

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