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Jony Ive insisted on making a $10,000 Apple Watch over objections from others at Apple

Published Mar 11th, 2015 7:15PM EDT
Apple Watch Edition Jony Ive
Image: Apple Inc.

The idea of paying $10,000 for an Apple Watch Edition is ridiculous to most people… but don’t tell that to Jony Ive. Via Fusion, last month’s big New Yorker profile of Ive revealed that he was the force within the company who really pushed to have Apple release a luxury watch that would only appeal to the sort of people who show up to the Davos World Economic Forum every year.

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To get his $10,000 Apple Watch, Ive had to fight through the objections of some at Apple who worried about creating divides between regular Apple customers and insanely wealthy Apple customers. Although Apple has always catered to the high-end computing market, its products have always been seen as attainable for most consumers on some level. A $10,000 Apple Watch, however, would create a distinct “upper crust” of Apple clientele that some in the company weren’t comfortable with.

Former Apple SVP of technologies Bob Mansfield told The New Yorker that Ive faced “a lot of resistance” because Apple’s goal has traditionally been to “build products for everybody.”

“But Ive won the argument, and in 2013 the company announced the high-level appointments of Angela Ahrendts, the former C.E.O. of Burberry, and Paul Deneve, the former C.E.O. of the Yves Saint Laurent Group,” The New Yorker reports. “Patrick Pruniaux, from TAG Heuer, a part of the L.V.M.H. luxury conglomerate, was hired last year”

Prior to joining BGR as News Editor, Brad Reed spent five years covering the wireless industry for Network World. His first smartphone was a BlackBerry but he has since become a loyal Android user.