The Apple Watch won’t ship until early 2015, but when it does arrive Apple’s first smartwatch won’t exactly be cheap. Prices will start at $349 for a basic model, but Apple will offer models with a range of materials and wrist straps. Something tells me the 18K gold model will cost a bit more than the stainless steel model.

And that’s got me thinking it’s time to revisit a question we asked earlier this year… how much money would you pay for a smartwatch?


You don’t need to wait until 2015 to find a rather pricey smartwatch. The Motorola Moto 360 sells for $249, but a model with a metal strap will be available soon for $299.

The Samsung Gear 2 smartwatch also sells for $299, which suggests that the upcoming Gear S (which has a larger screen and a cellular radio) will cost even more.

At the same time, there are a number of cheaper smartwatches already available — although some lack features you’ll find on high-end devices such as heart rate sensors, NFC, or cameras. Some of the cheaper models are also… less attractive, to put it mildly.

The smartwatch space is still pretty young and it almost feels silly to put a Pebble watch with an E Ink display and a custom operating system into the same category as the LG G Watch R with Android Wear or the Apple Watch. But each of these devices are basically wrist computers that can display the time and show notifications from your phone, run third-party apps and do much more.

Not everyone needs a smartwatch. I stopped wearing a watch years before I bought my first cellphone and don’t really see myself spending hundreds of dollars for a device that hangs out on my wrist to save me the few seconds it takes to pull a phone out of my pocket.

But some folks spend hundreds of dollars on wristwatches that don’t display notifications from their phones (and which probably don’t need to be recharged every day). If you’re in that camp, $349 or more might seem like a fair price to pay for the right watch.

So where do you fall?

[polldaddy poll=”8297008″]

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19 replies on “How much would you pay for a smartwatch?”

  1. I love Apples stuff but I haven’t worn a watch for 25 years and the Apple Watch wont sway me.

  2. I would want one forr when outside, but that means a sunlight readable display like mirasol. While it would be nice to use while in the sunlight to avoid taking out my phone and fiddling with the brightness, the REALly useful bit would be on my bike. I ride a bike to work and to school, which means that for up to about an hour and a half I don’t hear/feel my phone ring. I’m guessing that I would feel a smartwatch vibrating on my wrist. The sunlight readable display would allow me to know at a quick glance if I had gotten a message that couldn’t/shouldn’t wait (i.e. a work cancellation since, even if I get paid with such short notice, I still don’t want to cross the city in vain).

    Email notifications would be turned off.

    300 if it was truly worth it with features I would use. 200 if it only covered my basic needs. And the charge would have to last several days. I won’t let the number of recharge cycles force me into upgrading every two years what is essentially a luxury item.

  3. I cant figure this smart watch thing. My phone replaced my watch some time ago. Why would I want to wear a part of my phone on my wrist? To top it off I think a regular mechanical watch is much cooler in appearance than a bulky smart watch.

  4. Patiently waiting for MS to throw their hat into the ring. I want a cross platform solution with good battery life and nice styling, then I am in at any pricepoint, although ideally $300 max.

  5. Not interrested at all. Paying for a monitoring and tracking device so companies like Apple can sell my personal data to the highest bidder?
    Thanks, but no thanks!

  6. I collect and wear watches without ‘smart’ capabilities however I purchased a Pebble around Christmas time of this last year. I wore it for a month or so but have had difficulty caring enough about what it offers to keep it charged. At this point I am just not interested in having a watch that does anything but tell me the time. There is something beautiful in that simplicity. Have any of you had similar experiences?

  7. The smartwatch is a lateral move at best in regards to wearables.

    Just waiting for google glass (or equivalent) when it goes into mass production and the price drops below $500.

  8. Another interesting Q to brainstorm on: What compelling use can a smartwatch have, that a smartphone doesn’t?

    1. The ability to “bling” it at people in a distorted social perception that that is the thing to do.
      Most likely brought about by media and marketing and appeals to…vanity I guess?

  9. I think the more pertinent question is: What do you want a smartwatch to do before you will buy one? Use determines price.

  10. Honestly I would pay up to £300 but only for the right watch. I thought the Moto 360 was going to be that watch but then the ball was dropped, they dropped the sapphire glass, transflective or AMOLED display, then used a power-hungry SoC. They got round right though, along with wireless charging and the ambient light sensor. A few of those things were it seems dropped for price reduction reasons so that is why I say I would pay so much for the right watch. Give me something truly high end.

  11. Depends on the product.
    The Moto or Apple watches are worth less than 100$ but they are so far from what this class of products needs to be that i wouldn’t buy at any price, would rather get a much better device w/e that arrives.

  12. I still have my old Casio Databank rattling around a drawer somewhere…

    This watch is missing its killer app- which would be the ability to leave te phone at home for stretches of time. They need a small smartwatch that has a in ear headphone that is lower profile than a typical bluetooth headset (maybe something more hearing aide sized.) And with this watch and earpiece you should be able to send and receive calls, texts, listen to music and speak to a digital assistant (Siri/google/ect.) These features should work well without the phone. The assistant has to raise its usability to where it can be used complete with voice with minimal editing. It should read to you any content you want, so that you skip relying on a tiny screen. In fact the screen should be minimalist to keep size down. Basically closer to google glass than a computer on your wrist.

    Sure, integration with your phone/ecosystem is essential, but that should be the secondary role, not the primary role of the watch. Enhance our lives by disconnecting us from our phones now and again while keeping us connected with our digital ecosystems. It should not be something that makes us use our phones more. Smartphones are great because they allow us to leave our computers at home. But these watches would be like having a smartphone that made you carry your laptop with you for it to work. maybe the tech is not ready to make this jump.

    1. “I stopped wearing a watch years before I bought my first cellphone…”

      Me too!

      I think people who want these are possibly executive types who might want to be descrete about their Twitter updates (or whatever) and feel that glancing at their 18k gold watch during an important business meeting might be less obvious than pulling out a 5″ smartphone.

  13. Here’s the problem with smartwatches.

    First a background. Once upon a time people wore watches , now, not so much. Why, well you know have a watch on your smartphone (or mobile back then). Even though it takes a second to take your phone out of your pocket to see the time, it still saves you the cost of a watch and the discomfort of wearing one.

    Would most people now buy a smartwatch, lets see . To enter text for email, tweet etc. NO. Would you type on a 1″ screen rather than spend half a second taking your phone out to type on a 5.5″ screen. Envisage trying to select virtual keys that are about a 2mm square. Horrendous

    Would you read messages on a 1″ screen -> NO, you would spend half a second to read the email, text on your 5.5″ smartphone. Again, imagine reading an email , on the 1″ screen

    Would you make calls on it- As someone who has owned a phone watch, the answer is absolutely NO. Imagine answering a call in public where everyone can hear not just you, but the person calling you. Then if you take out a headset, there literally isn’t an advantage over having instead taken out your smartphone.

    Benefits, cost, useability, practicality, style . A product must be a winning combination of all these to succeed.

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