To Buy or Not to Buy Apple Watch: 10 Factors to Consider

To Buy or Not to Buy Apple Watch: 10 Factors to Consider
First Off, What Does It Cost?
This Is a First-Generation Product
Consider the Competitive Alternatives
There Are Ways to Test It Out
What's the Difference Between the Versions?
Preorders Are Advisable to Avoid a Waiting List
But It Might Prove Difficult to Snap Up a Preorder
Library of Apple Watch Apps Should Grow Steadily
You'll Need an iPhone 5 or Later
Buying the Highest-End Model? You'll Get Special Treatment
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To Buy or Not to Buy Apple Watch: 10 Factors to Consider

By Don Reisinger

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First Off, What Does It Cost?

Let's get this out of the way: Apple Watch will be a pricey purchase for many smartwatch buyers. The cheapest Apple Watch Sport Edition, which comes with a 38mm aluminum case, will go for $349. Those who want a slightly larger 42mm model will pay $399. The midrange Apple Watch starts at $549 and can reach $1,099 at the top end of the range. Apple Watch Edition, meanwhile, is the pricey gold version that starts at $10,000.

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This Is a First-Generation Product

Before deciding to preorder or buy Apple Watch, keep in mind that the device is a first-generation product. That means that Apple Watch could come with some kinks and issues that will need to be addressed in updates. Buying a first-generation product is sometimes risky, even though Apple is the company behind the device.

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Consider the Competitive Alternatives

The competitive alternatives on the market should be considered before deciding whether Apple Watch is right for you. After all, Pebble Time, complete with its e-ink display, looks awfully compelling. There's also the round Motorola Moto 360 and several other products gunning for the market in the coming months. Apple Watch certainly gets all the attention, but it's not the only compelling smartwatch on the market.

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There Are Ways to Test It Out

Apple is allowing its customers to try out Apple Watch before the device goes on sale, so they have a sense for how it works and whether it would be a good purchase. That would be a good move for anyone on the fence about Apple Watch. The 15-minute tryout will give customers time to have their questions answered and to decide whether it's right for them.

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What's the Difference Between the Versions?

As noted, Apple Watch comes in a few different versions. While the devices will all be running the same operating system, they come with different styles for different customers. Apple Watch Edition is 18-karat gold, which means it's aimed at the luxury market. Apple Watch is a standard stainless steel version that will be ideal for the vast majority of customers who want to wear the device for pleasure and for exercise. Apple Watch Sport is for the active users among us who want to take Apple Watch with them on runs or other exploits. Think of how you'd want to use Apple Watch before choosing one model over the other.

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Preorders Are Advisable to Avoid a Waiting List

Apple says that it'll have some units available in-store on the day Apple Watch launches, but don't expect the company to have too many. One of the best ways to ensure you get an Apple Watch without waiting weeks or even months is to preorder the device online at the right time. It's a tried and true method that has helped millions around the globe get Apple devices on launch day without standing in line for a long time.

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But It Might Prove Difficult to Snap Up a Preorder

Just like iPhone 6 Plus, Apple Watch is expected to be in short supply at launch. So, it makes since for those who want to preorder the device to sign on to the online Apple Store April 10 right at 12 a.m. PDT to place an order. If the preorders are anything like the iPhone 6, East Coasters might wake up on April 10 and discover initial shipments are already sold out.

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Library of Apple Watch Apps Should Grow Steadily

Apple has already highlighted several apps for Apple Watch, including Evernote and Starwood Hotels, but over the last couple of weeks, many developers have started to update their programs to support Apple's wearable. For now, many of them focus on the simpler things, like weather updates, notifications, news feeds, health and fitness. But Apple recently opened the Apple Watch API to developers, so potential buyers can expect that there will be a growing library of apps, assuming that the smartwatch sells as well as predicted.

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You'll Need an iPhone 5 or Later

If you don't have an iPhone 5 or newer, there really isn't a good reason to even consider Apple Watch. After all, the smartwatch requires the iPhone 5 or newer to work. So customers who are running the iPhone 4 or iPhone 4S won't be able to use Apple Watch. If you don't have a newer iPhone, that means you'll need to buy one, plus an Apple Watch, just to get the smartwatch's full functionality. Too bad.

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Buying the Highest-End Model? You'll Get Special Treatment

According to reports, Apple will be giving special treatment to those people who buy the company's gold edition. Apple will be offering those customers a dedicated "expert" to help them with their buying experience, as well as an hourlong training session and a 30-minute tryout rather than the aforementioned 15 minutes for the lower-end versions. After buying the gold edition model, customers will be given a dedicated phone line for two years that offers full customer service, according to reports

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