INDUSTRY ANALYSIS ARCHIVE

Can my SmartWatch ever be a “Classic”?

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Last week, I caught up with a good friend, Bob Brumfield in New York City. As we sat having a drink, we happened to eye another patron glancing at his watch. It was a classic Breguet. I ogled the watch in great envy.

I asked Bob whether he invested in an Apple Watch. He had not. In return, Bob asked me, what watch I was wearing. I was wearing a smartwatch. We both wondered about those who made the $17,000 (or so) investment in a gold-plated Apple Watch.

I am no horologist, but $17,000 can buy a beautiful Audemars-Piguet, a Jageur leCoutre, or many other fine watches that have be designed, and handmade by a Swiss horologist, whose ancestors invested the art of watchmaking through the generations. This watch might possibly be adorned by previous jewels for $17,000.

The point here, is simple. Great watches, nay, classic watches have, to date, been investments. The watchmaker Patek Phillipe‘s advertisement says it all “You never actually own a Patek Philippe. You merely look after it for the next generation.

My question is, will an Apple Watch, or an Android Wear, ever become a “classic.” Do we “merely look after it for the next generation?” Regretfully, I have concluded that our new SmartWatches – many that are capable of organizing our lives, reminding us not to forget the milk or buy flowers for our wives to beg for forgiveness, etc. are nothing more than a “for now” investment.

Don’t get me wrong, I envy those who have the disposable income to “invest” in a gold Apple Watch. Perhaps the luxury mobile phone vendor, Vertu may come up with an even more impressive timepiece; but I very much doubt that it would last beyond the current generation!

In fact, I can see my son saying, “Oooh dad! That’s so 2015!”

Oh well, at least I can call my Casio calculator watch a classic!