Exclusive: Six percent of U.S. adults plan to buy Apple Watch - Reuters/Ipsos poll

Wed Apr 15, 2015 2:16pm EDT
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By Bill Rigby

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - About 6 percent of U.S. adults plan to buy Apple Inc's smartwatch according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll, with men twice as likely as women to purchase Apple boss Tim Cook's first new major product.

The poll showed the watch, marketed by Apple as a high-fashion item as well as a new frontier in technology, appealed to fewer than 4 percent of women compared with 9 percent of men.

Ipsos polled 1,829 U.S. adults online between April 8 and 14 about the watch, which opened for preorders last week. The poll had a credibility interval of plus or minus 2.6 percentage points.

If calculated based on 2014 U.S. Census projections, and excluding younger teens, this could mean potential sales of about 15 million watches, if those who said they intended to buy follow through with an actual purchase.

Wall Street estimates had varied widely between 10 million and 32 million worldwide sales in 2015. Van Baker, an analyst at tech research firm Gartner, said the Reuters poll results indicated a "pretty high percentage" was interested in buying.

"It should serve Apple well if they can even get close to that," he said.

As far as overall interest in the watch as opposed to intending to buy it, the poll showed that 18 percent of respondents were "very" or "somewhat" interested versus 76 percent who showed no interest.

Highest interest at 34 percent was among men aged 18 to 28, the same age and gender bracket that gave the watch the highest "cool factor" at 53 percent, compared with an overall 42 percent.   Continued...

A customer looks over an Apple Watch in Palo Alto, California April 10, 2015.   REUTERS/Robert Galbraith