The gold Apple Watch is dead

Not quite pure gold.
Not quite pure gold.
Image: Reuters/Robert Galbraith
We may earn a commission from links on this page.

The gold version of the Apple Watch, which caused a stir last year with its five-figure price tag, has been quietly retired.

Apple didn’t mention the gold watch’s inglorious end at its event in San Francisco today (Sept. 7), but the company’s website makes it clear: You can no longer purchase the Apple Watch in gold for between $10,000 and $17,000.

The gold version was known as the Apple Watch Edition, a name that now applies to a new ceramic version of the product that was briefly mentioned on stage and starts at $1,249. At that price, it’s at the low end of the premium watch market, a quick retreat from what one looked like an aggressive foray by Apple into luxury goods.

Apple has never released sales figures for the Watch, and it did not respond to a request for comment. Even estimates for the gold version were hard to come by due to its rarefied market. The company only sold the gold Apple Watch in select retail stores and online. Earlier this year, Apple made the gold version less prominent on its site and removed it from some stores, but it was still available for purchase until today. Now they are only available on secondary markets.

When Apple first announced the Apple Watch, the gold version captured much of the attention due to a price that was shocking even by Apple’s premium standards. Many analysts viewed the gold Apple Watch as a move by the company to compete more with makers of luxury goods like Rolex. Others portrayed it as a way to gin up attention for Apple’s retail stores.