There have been doubts about whether the Watch, launched in April, has been a successful product so far for Apple. The tech giant seemed intent on allaying any fears by providing plenty of upbeat commentary about strong Watch sales -- without specifics -- during the company’s third-quarter earnings conference call Tuesday.
Here’s what Apple executives said on Tuesday after Apple reported earnings:
Lots more Watch apps
There are now over 8,500 third-party apps available for Apple Watch, according to CEO Tim Cook. This compares to the 3,500 apps announced back in April during the company’s second-quarter conference call.
Cook cited market research from Wristly that showed a 97 percent customer satisfaction rate for Apple Watch. “Our own market research shows that 94 percent of Apple Watch owners wear and use it regularly, if not every day,” Cook said.
Watch likely had about $1 billion in sales
Though executives would not provide specifics about Watch sales, Apple’s CFO Luca Maestri said the Watch accounted for "well over" 100 percent of the approximately $950 million revenue increase in the "other products" category. So it seems pretty likely that the Watch logged sales of at least $1 billion. Maestri also reiterated that Apple does not “plan to disclose any Apple Watch metrics,” citing the tech giant’s unwillingness to provide insight that could benefit its competitors.
However, Piper Jaffray Analyst Gene Munster estimates that Apple only sold 1.2 million watches in the quarter, according to a Bloomberg report. He added that the number, well below some recent analyst estimates (ranging from about 3 million to over 5.5 million), could fuel doubts about the Watch.
Sales up in June
Cook said that Apple Watch June sales were higher than April or May. "I realize that's very different than what…is being written,” he added. That statement takes a lot of the air out of a recent report from Slice Intelligence that said Apple Watch sales were down in June. Slice told FoxNews.com last week that the reason behind the decline from mid-June is likely due to the fact that Slice focuses on U.S. online sales only and that “sales are beginning to shift into the store,” according to Slice Chief Data Officer Kanishka Agarwal. Another reason for the June sales increase could be that more international sales are beginning to kick in.
Market Researcher IDC also told FoxNews.com last week that sales were increasing throughout June, not decreasing.
Apple has caught up with Watch demand
Cook noted that Apple started taking Apple Watch preorders in nine countries on April 10, adding that demand immediately exceeded supply by a wide margin. The Apple CEO also explained that in the past few days the tech giant has caught up with that demand. “The Apple Watch sell-through was higher than the comparable launch periods of the original iPhone or the original iPad,” he added.
Store visits jump
Retail and online stores saw a 49 percent year-over-year increase in customer visits, which Maestri attributed to strong interest in Apple Watch.
Sales channel expansion
Apple is planning to expand its sales channels for the Watch ahead of the holiday season according to Cook. “We're convinced that the Watch is going to be one of the top gifts of the holiday season,” he explained.
Of course, the above is just a snapshot of the Watch after only three months of sales and we won't know until after the holiday season whether Apple is able to see the kind of phenomenal sales growth it has seen for past products like the iPhone and iPad.