TECH: Analysts predict a big holiday quarter for Apple Watch, affecting the entire jewelry industry

Chance Miller

As several reports have suggested, Apple Watch is eating into the traditional watch business. Now, analysts are predicting that demand for the Apple Watch this holiday season will eat at sales in the already-slowing traditional watch industry.

As noted by MarketWatch, Citizen’s Bank explains that by charging more for its “essential tech products,” Apple is taking a larger share of discretionary spending in general. This year more than past years, Citizens Bank expects the jewelry industry to take a hit from this due to the new Apple Watch.

“By charging more for these essential tech products, it’s taking share of wallet from other discretionary items,” said Jaime Ward, group head of Citizens Bank’s retail finance group. “Jewelry will unfortunately be hurt by that.”

Meanwhile, Cascend Securities expects Apple to sell 10 million Apple Watch units during the December quarter, with sales accounting for “almost $9 billion” for 2018 as a whole.

“We expect Apple will sell almost 10 million watches in the December quarter, and could account for almost $9 billion total calendar year 2018 sales,” wrote Cascend Securities. “Competing watches expected for the holiday season from Google and others are unlikely to be an issue for Apple: customers already in the Apple ecosystem will stay with the Apple Watch to use the combined features.”

Of course, Apple doesn’t break out actual Apple Watch sales like it does iPhone, but we can usually get a sense of growth through the company’s “other” category.

Lastly, Deloitte economic forecaster Daniel Bachman put the Apple Watch’s appeal rather bluntly. “The cool item to get under the Christmas tree is an Apple Watch, not necessarily a watch from the local jewelry store,” he said.

The Apple Watch has already had a great impact on the traditional watch industry. Earlier this year, a report suggested that the Apple Watch was on track to overtake the entire Swiss watch industry. Are you buying anyone an Apple Watch this holiday season? Let us know down in the comments.