Tim Cook claims record demand for Apple Watch after research shows 71% decline

tim cook

Apple sold 1.1m of the devices in the third quarter of the year, down from 3.9m a year ago, according to research company IDC, the Telegraph reports.

Tim Cook, the company’s chief executive, countered that the Apple Watch is set for its highest-ever sales in the current quarter, following the release of a new model in September. He said that sales to consumers had been at record levels in the first week of October, and that growth was “off the charts”.

The Apple Watch, the company’s first new product launched under Mr Cook’s leadership, has had muted sales since it was first released last year. IDC said the decline in sales was down to “an aging lineup and an unintuitive user interface”, as well as the wait for a new model holding back consumers.

In September, Mr Cook unveiled the “Series 2” version of the device, which is waterproof, features a GPS chip and has a more powerful processor, as well as a revamp of the Apple Watch operating system.

“Our data shows that Apple Watch is doing great and looks to be one of the most popular holiday gifts this year,” Mr Cook said.

“Sales growth is off the charts. In fact, during the first week of holiday shopping, our sell-through of Apple Watch was greater than any week in the product’s history. And as we expected, we’re on track for the best quarter ever for Apple Watch.”

Apple is seeking to combat a decline in revenue, the first it has experienced in more than a decade, as sales of the iPhone drop for the first time ever. It is, however, forecasting a return to growth in the coming quarter following the release of the iPhone 7.

IDC said Fitbit had the greatest market share of wearable devices, selling 5.3m in the quarter, followed by Xiaomi and Garmin.