Tim Cook: Apple is the No.2 watchmaker in the world (behind Rolex)

Can't touch Rolex for now
Tim Cook: Apple is world's No.2 watchmaker

At last night's Apple Watch Series 2 (and we guess iPhone 7) event, Tim Cook took the fight to the smartwatch sales haters. According to Apple's CEO, Apple was the second biggest watchmaker in the world, behind only Rolex, in terms of revenue for 2015.

Now he didn't give us any hard sales figures for the original Apple Watch but Rolex did $4.5 billion in sales last year so we can assume that Apple Watch sales from April to December 2015 came in at under that figure.

Read this: Apple Watch Series 2 hands on | Apple AirPods need to know

Still, as Tim's handy list shows, Apple - with its single smartwatch - took more money from watch sales than third place Fossil - which now has its own Q line of smartwatches - as well as the rest of the Swiss set: Omega, Cartier, Citizen, Seiko, Patek Philippe, Longines, Tissot and Casio.

This isn't actually a surprise. Back in February, we reported that smartwatches started to outsell Swiss watches for the first time at the end of 2015 with an estimated 8.1 million shipped, a smidge over the 7.9 million Swiss watch sales.

Most estimates agree that Apple has sold 10 or 12 million smartwatches which looks like a flop next to quarterly iPhone sales. Not so much next to Swiss watches. Apple know how to pick its slides. With most of this year spent waiting for the Series 2, can Cupertino top Rolex in 2017?


  • yogibimbi says:

    With Rolex' prices ranging from f...ig expensive too ludicrously out of this world, this comparison is a bit weak. Let's go for the actual numbers, and I bet there is still a sizeable gap to Casio, Swatch and others. Maybe even Suunto, Timex or Garmin.

  • roscoe says:

    I think Patek Philippe's slogan says it all. " You never actually own a Patek, you simply take care of it for the next generation".  I'm not anti-apple or tech, but really, can you see passing down an apple watch as a family heirloom? 

  • roscoe says:

    Patek says it best. You never actually own a Patek, you take care of it for the next generation. Not that I'm against tech... but really, will this be a watch you'll pass on to your son? I will bet that any mechanical watch will outlast any electronic watch for offering the time of day.  I serviced a 100+ yr. old watch today. Works great. 'nuff said. 

  • TechnoChron says:

    Excuse, me... 12 million watches sold in first year of launch is not a success? That's over 40% of what the Swiss watch industry exported in unit volume. The mechanical watch will go the way of analog phones, Kodak cameras, the horse and buggy, etc. Just look at this year's stats from the Swiss Watch Federation. All watch categories, from low cost steel to high cost precious metals are down over 10%. This is the begining of the 'Swiss Tsunami" as Mr. Mock labels it. Leave it to the smug Swiss watch industry to be writing off Apple and the luxury smartwatch. Just because a $500B market capped company with over $200B of cash and $250B in sales decides to scrap its smart yet premature attempt at innovative luxury, doesn't mean it's game over. Just wait till they take their 'Apple Inside' approach to avant garde luxury watchmakers. Rest assured, Rolex and Patek will see major hits as they already are taking, yet won't tell us. Look at Richemont's and Swatch's 10Ks and you will see the begining of the end. Rest assured, your Patek handmedown will make a nice mantelpiece warmer next to Grandpa's photos. It's a digital world and we only use 1 wrist....Wake up!

  • jimmunsw says:

    To the Swiss watch makers - beware of the second tsunami coming to your country, since the quartz tsunami wipe out most of the little Swiss companies producer in the 70's. Even then they didn't believe it can be so drastically damaging to them. So better beware of this second coming, wake up, work together in all aspect related to counter or compete with Apple watch (including advertisement),  otherwise it will be a great disaster to all in Switzerland!  Take care and best regards - ;)

  • ксения says:

    It is difficult here to say anything... the Competition has always been, is and will be. Watch everyone chooses what to like.

What do you think?

Connect with Facebook, Twitter, or just enter your email to sign in and comment.