The six percent of Americans that are reportedly planning to get an Apple Watch will likely have to wait until summer to buy one in a four-walled Apple store.
A memo, written by Apple retail chief Angela Ahrendts and obtained by The Telegraph, outlines the company’s plan to exclusively take orders for the Watch online “through the month of May.” After that, presumably, customers will be able to buy the Watch in stores.
Ahrendts explains to employees:
“Given the high interest and initial supply at launch, we will be able to get customers the model they want earlier and faster by taking orders online.
“I know this is a different experience for our customers, and a change for you as well. Are we going to launch every product this way from now on? No. We all love those blockbuster Apple product launch days - and there will be many more to come.”
The change in product rollout for Apple means there will be no reason for the typical fanfare of customers lining up outside its stores on release day. (Those fanboys and fangirls can line up, but they won’t be able to leave with a watch.) Instead, Ahrendts wrote that preorderers will begin receiving Apple Watch deliveries on that day, at their homes.
Analysts have estimated Apple Watch sales at over two million units so far, with the less-expensive Apple Watch Sport representing 85 percent of orders; Apple has yet to confirm those numbers. Apple sold four million iPhone 6 and 6 Plus preorders in the first 24 hours of availability last September..
Read Ahrendts’ full company memo about the Apple Watch launch at The Telegraph.
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