Apple Watch is all about function, not form

June 23, 2015

Since its recent release, millions of people have bought and tried the Apple Watch. And it seems many are not as enamoured with the watch’s looks as they had expected to be. Apple wanted the watch to appeal to the fashion conscious – both Beyoncé and Karl Lagerfeld were spotted wearing gold versions before its release – but it appears they haven’t been entirely successful on that front.

Apple CEO Tim Cook has spoken glowingly about the watch’s design, saying fashion should be the number one reason to buy the watch. He’s praised Sir Jony Ive, Apple’s British creative genius. “He did such a great job with the design. It’s beautiful.” It has even been noticed that Cook has stepped up his sartorial game in recent weeks, shunning his usual sloppy jeans and loose shirts for noticeably more polished versions. To further cement the watch’s fashion aspirations, Apple bought 12 ad pages in Vogue magazine.

Failing fashion

But it appears Apple’s foray into fashion hasn’t been completely successful. In the New York Times, fashion director and fashion critic Vanessa Friedman explains why she won’t be wearing the watch. “I wanted it to work. I wanted to fall in love, like so many of my friends. I knew other people looked at what I had with envy. But a month and a half after we first got together, I have decided it is time to — well, call time…I am breaking up with my Apple Watch. The relationship was, despite all expectations, not what I needed.”

She says while the watch is attractive there is no doubt it is a gadget. “The watch isn’t actually a fashion accessory for the tech-happy. It’s a tech accessory pretending to be a fashion accessory. I just couldn’t fall for it.”

Sales figures and reactions

Apple hasn’t released sales figures since the watch’s launch earlier this month, but the company has said it was “thrilled” with sales. AppleInsider estimates about 2.8 million watches have already been sold.

Writing for Business Insider, James Cook says he regrets buying the watch. “For me, the Apple Watch is just a watch that shows me text messages. It flashes up notifications throughout the day that saves me having to take my iPhone out of my pocket.”

“Essentially, I paid £300 for a nicer watch that makes it more convenient to read text messages. I’m feeling rather short-changed.”

Cook spoke to a number of people about their experiences with the watch. Some loved it, some found it added no value to their lives and some were on the fence, feeling ambivalent about its usefulness.

Mixed reactions

Gizmodo recently reported there were already a number of Apple Watches available for sale on eBay, signalling people weren’t pleased with their purchases. “And these people aren’t just resellers hoping to cash in on the hype. Nope, these people are selling their Apple Watches ‘barely used’ — a clear sign that things just didn’t work out for people who intended to keep them.”

It remains to be seen what will happen to the Apple Watch as it is more widely released and used. There could also be improvements to new versions which could appeal to the fashion conscious. Perhaps Apple will take note of what the fashionistas are saying. But at the end of the day, at least some utilitarian gadget lovers are satisfied… for now.

This article originally appeared on MWEB.

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