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Apple Watch sales plunge 90 percent: Does it make the smartwatch a flop already?

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The Apple Watch was launched amidst much-fanfare and after a lot of buzz that went on for over a year. On the other hand, the Cupertino Company quietly launched the new iPod with tagline calling it the ‘best ever’. However, looks like people still seem to care more about the decade-old iPod rather than the Watch.

Going by Google Trends, the Apple Watch is searched the least among Apple products, and even the iPod surpasses it, according to a report by CNN. Yes, the iPod that was launched almost a decade ago still outperforms the watch when it comes to searches by people. The iPod and Mac searches are ahead of the Watch by a significant margin.

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It is the first new product category since Steve Jobs’ death, and looks like the company hasn’t struck the right chords. If the chatter online is to be believed, then the device is already a dud. The smartwatch was announced last year in September, and hit store shelves early April this year. The sales have fallen by 90 percent since its launch week of 1.5 million units, states a new Slice Intelligence.


Slice research is based on electronic receipts sent to millions of email addresses following purchases. The report adds that two-thirds units sold so far are the cheapest “Sport” version, which means the lowest-profit device that starts at $349, instead of the costlier variants. The gold variant hasn’t sparked the same excitement as the iPhone gold, and the report claims less than 2000 units have been sold in the US.

The new iPod, just like the Watch, has been infused with some health tracking features. It comes with the powerful A8 chip, and fitness tracking with M8 motion coprocessor. You can use the Health app to track the fitness attributes. This makes one think, why couldn’t Apple simply reinvent the people-loved iPod instead of building a new full-fledged Watch, after all the iPod is also considered dead by some, owing to the music and video capabilities seen in the iPhone.

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The all new Apple iPod 6th generation. Image: Apple

However, it is still too soon to write off the Watch. The device still managed to achieve the ‘million’ figure, and going by the report, the sole competitor seems the FitBit. “The report primarily compared the Apple Watch with FitBit’s lower-cost fitness trackers. Nonetheless, Slice’s data shows that the Apple Watch outsells everything else on the market. FitBit sales have surpassed 200,000 in a week only five times, and in 2014 exceeded 100,000 only during the holiday season. But in its launch week, the Apple Watch sold more than 1.3 million units according to Slice,” says the Cheatsheet report.

Industry experts have been offering mixed reactions. While some say the number is still plausible compared to other smartwatch makers, others say the slump may continue. There are some who also believe that the people are just evaluating the Watch, and as it improves and more content is made available, the demand is bound to increase.

“Apple’s iPods, iPhone and even iPad didn’t hit their sales stride in the first three months of sales. Each took some time to build an audience of millions, and saw sales develop particularly during holiday seasons, points out AppleInsider report.

Though the Watch is just a small part of Apple’s big empire, it is of utmost importance for more than one reason. Firstly, it is the company’s first new product without the head-honcho Jobs, which means it will be judged to see if Apple is able to maintain and deliver the same standards it is known for.

This is something that investors are bound to look at. Wearables isn’t a huge market yet, and so the company isn’t really facing any big competition. However, it is also the first step into the booming wearables market, which is arguably the future. Considering the ‘thin is in’ fad, the wearables market is bound to grow, rather than follow the iPad fate.

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