Financial Focus: The Apple iWatch

$5 for a $1 hamburger

As a financial advisor, product vendors will sometimes reach out and invite me to their “product announcement” conferences. Considering it was “Apple” and the “iWatch,” I decided I had to go.

But after the iWatch preview, I am not sure if it’s worth it, YET!

Here are the facts:

1 Versions & Price

The standard version of the watch will be between $549 and $1,049, depending on what features you want. The standard Watch comes with a stainless steel or black steel band (picture) along with a new Apple addition called Sapphire crystal that is supposed to be super-durable and scratch proof.

The less expensive models run between $349 and $399 and called  the  iWatch Sport. This consumer model does not offer the fancy crystal or stainless steel bands.

The super-elite versions are priced between $10,000 and $17,000. There is an 18-karat gold iWatch edition with super-special features designed especially for those with money to burn on a smart watch.

All told, there are around 38 different hardware configurations for the Watch.

iwatch22. Sketching and Taps

You can sketch a quick design – let’s use hearts (picture) – and then send it to another person, who will see it sketched out on their Apple iWatch surface. Or you can send a tap which the iWatch can translate – sort of like a real-world Facebook Poke. To get the full functionality, the receiver must have an iWatch. Or you’re poking thin air!

3. New Touch Screen Dynamics

The Sapphire crystal is not the only way that Apple has updated its touch screen. The touch screen features tech that can interpret your fingers in all-new ways. Specifically, it can tell if you are just lightly touching the screen or if you are pressing down a little harder. Presumably this opens the door for a whole array of commands based on pressure (picture) . The Apple iWatch waterproof features will also keep it sweat and rain-resistant.

4. A New Processor

The company has built a new chip from the ground up, called the S1, and apparently Samsung didn’t build this processor.

5. Apple’s App Collection

Apple had pre-loaded plenty of options on the iWatch. The fitness rings are a handy way to keep track of your activity at a glance. The camera app is fun for selfies and group photos.

The stopwatch is surprisingly utilitarian. There are also a lot of brand-specific apps from companies like American Airlines, Citibank, and Target that have found innovative uses.

6. Battery Life

The Apple iWatch’s battery life is 18 hours for normal use, which means you have a full day before you have to recharge. It’s worthwhile noting that the iWatch uses a different charging mechanism than other Apple devices.

7. Storage

You have 8GB of general storage, for more apps , some exclusive content and saved photos. There’s another 2GB for music downloads, enough to load up some tunes or ring tones.

My humble financial opinion:

Apple has created a software/hardware package that your average consumer might already own. And at the present MSRP, there is no reason buy now.

In my opinion, let the $5 hamburger devalue until it’s offered on the $1 menu. Unless there’s a compelling reason to buy now, don’t.

The Apple iWatch realizes technology once only found in Dick Tracy and on Star Trek. But this watch isn’t cutting edge, just yet!

Anthony Rivieccio is the founder & the CEO of The Financial Advisors Group, celebrating its 18th year as a fee-only financial planning firm specializing in solving financial problems. A recognized financial expert since 1986, Rivieccio has been featured by many national and local media including: Klipingers Personal Finance, The New York Post, News 12 The Bronx, Bloomberg News Radio, Bronxnet Channel 67 TV, The Norwood News, The West Side Manhattan Gazette, Labor Press Magazine, Financial Planning Magazine, WINS 1010 Radio, and The Bronx News. Anthony can be reached at 347.575.5045.

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