Choosing an Apple Watch

For me it's not a matter of if I am getting an Apple Watch or not, but rather which one. I've narrowed it down to 3 options:

  1. 42 mm Apple Watch Sport with a White Sport Band ($399)
  2. 42 mm Apple Watch (Stainless Steel) with a White Sport Band ($599)
  3. 42 mm Space Black Apple Watch (Stainless Steel) with a Space Black Link Bracelet ($1099)

I wasn't even considering anything other than the entry level Apple Watch Sport with a Sport Band until this past weekend. I work out just about every day, so the lighter watch with a sport band seemed like a great fit. So why am I even considering a stainless steel watch?

Even at the entry level price of $399 the Apple Watch Sport is still a pretty expensive watch (at least for me). I've owned 2 watches in my adult life. My first was a very heavy Swatch with an all metal band and I wore it for many years. The stainless steel case and band still look brand new but the crystal on the watch face is pretty much scratched to hell.

My most recent watch is an all Titanium watch that I received as a Christmas gift from my wife 14 years ago. The face of this watch is made out of a Gibeon meteorite that landed in Namibia and was discovered in 1838. It really doesn't get any cooler than wearing a watch that is made out something that crashed on Earth from space. This watch is so incredible light you hardly knew you are wearing it. But once I started carry an iPhone I no longer felt "naked" if I left the house without a watch, all I had to do was look at the phone in my pocket and I knew what time it was. I didn't make the decision to stop wearing the watch, but slowly got out of the habit of putting in on in the morning and eventually stopped wearing it all together.

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So getting back to my Apple Watch decision. $400 is a lot of money in my book to spend on a watch. I know from past experience that I can be pretty rough on watches. From a durability standpoint the Stainless Steel Apple Watch with its saphire crystal display is going to be more durable, so I think it stands a much better chance of standing up to my abuse (physical abuse that is, I'm sure either watch will stand up to my verbal abuse equally well). Do I really want to drop $400 on a watch that is going to show wear and tear after a few months of heavy use? But what about the weight of the watch. One of the draws to the Apple Watch Sport was its relatively light weight which works well for working out. Here is the breakdown of total weight of each of my 3 options:

  1. 42 mm Apple Watch Sport with a White Sport Band (81 g)
  2. 42 mm Apple Watch (Stainless Steel) with a White Sport Band (101 g)
  3. 42 mm Space Black Apple Watch (Stainless Steel) with a Space Black Link Bracelet (125 g)

Remember that all titanium badass watch from space I used to wear? You know, the one I could hardly tell I was wearing it was so light. 52 grams. It makes sense that the Apple Watch (which is a mini computer on your wrist) is going to weigh a bit more. How about that relatively heavy Swatch that I beat all to hell? 82 grams. Either of the stainless steel Apple Watch options I am considering will be heavier than the Swatch I used to wear. But is that really a big deal? I don't think so. Once I get used to wearing a watch every day again I don't think the difference in weight between 81 grams and 125 grams is going to make all that much of a difference. Look at it this way, marathon runners and triathletes wear some pretty bulky and heavy GPS tracking watches today when they compete and I don't hear any of them complaining (lets face it, they have more pressing things to complain about).

So why spring for the more expensive watch? You know that Apple is going to come out with Version 2.0 of this thing next year (or sooner) and I will want that too. I suspect the Apple Watch is going to hold its value pretty well, so I should be able to sell my version 1.0 and buy version 2.0. I think I am going to have an easier time selling a relatively new looking stainless steel watch vs a worn or potentially beat to hell aluminum Apple Watch. So I'm not concerned about upgrading in a year or two. I also think the stainless steel watch is going to hold its value much better than the aluminum Apple Watch Sport will. The Space Black Stainless Steel is also only available if you buy the link bracelet, so it is the most expensive stainless steel version that Apple sells. For this reason I think it will have the best resale value. So for all of us super geeks that plan on upgrading each time to the latest version I think the stainless steel is the better way to go. The vast majority of people are planning on going with the entry level Apple Watch Sport, so come time for version 2.0 the market is going to be flooded with aluminum Apple Watches that are for sale. That won't bode well for the resale value.

I'm really leaning towards getting the watch I really want, the Space Black Stainless Steel Apple Watch with the Space Black Link Bracelet. When I do eventually upgrade I will only be upgrading the main watch case and not the band, so I will still keep the band and only be out the percentage of the $500 that the actual watch portion of the watch decreases in value in that year or so and not the full $1099 of the original purchase price. I've been saving back extra money for quite a while now for this watch and this past weekend I was very surprised to see that I had enough for the Apple Watch I really want. Now I just need to get over the shock of spending that much money on a watch...

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