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Apple Watch models more quickly available

The entry-level Sport version and the Apple Watch are readily available. Only the pricey Apple Watch Edition is still backlogged.

Supply of the Apple Watch has caught up with demand for the most part. Apple

Those of you in the US who want to order an Apple Watch through the company's website won't have to wait long for it to reach your doorstep.

A tour through the Apple Watch online store shows that most models are now in stock, meaning they're immediately available for shipping, or require a wait time of just one business day before they're mailed. That's a huge change from April when Apple's wearable initially launched, and online buyers had to wait several weeks for some editions and up to a month for other variants to ship.

The huge gap in demand over supply is one reason why Apple initially limited its watch sales to just online orders.

"We expect that strong customer demand will exceed our supply at launch," Angela Ahrendts, Apple's senior vice president of retail and online stores, said in April. "To provide the best experience and selection to as many customers as we can, we will be taking orders for Apple Watch exclusively online during the initial launch period."

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The company's first entry into the wearable device market, the Apple Watch is available in three varieties: the entry-level Sport version starting at $349, the Apple Watch starting at $549 and the Apple Watch Edition starring at $10,000. As such, the watch is competing against a range of different products -- other smartwatches, fitness and activity bands and even high-priced luxury watches. Apple hasn't released sales figures on the watch since the device isn't separated out from its overall product category. So there's no way to know for sure if supply has caught up with demand because of greater supply, lesser demand or a combination of both.

In June, research firm Slice Intelligence calculated that Apple had sold 2.79 million Apple Watches since April based on an analysis of e-mail receipts. Fellow research firm Strategy Analytics predicted in March that Apple would ship 15.4 million watch units in 2015, giving the company 54.8 percent of the global smartwatch market. KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo echoed the 15 million figure in a May investors note, but fellow Apple analyst Katy Huberty with Morgan Stanley believes Apple will sell 30 million watches during the first 12 months since its launch.

Whatever the numbers, Apple is making a nice profit on at least one model. In April, IHS estimated that Apple spends just $83.70 to make the $349 Sport version.

However many watches Apple has sold and however much money it's making, the product benefits the company in ways beyond sales and profits. The Apple Watch requires an iPhone to use all of its features. Every iPhone user is another person snagged into the Apple ecosystem, meaning someone who buys apps at the App Store, purchases music and other content via iTunes and potentially buys other Apple products and services.

So how long will the new Apple watches take to ship to you place an order? It depends on the version and the price tag. The $349 Sport edition is in stock and immediately available, while the $399 version shows a one-day wait time. The $549 Apple Watch shows immediate availability, while the $599 edition has a one-day wait.

And what about the expensive Apple Watch Edition? The $10,000 model with the rose gold case and white sport band shows a wait time of 3 to 5 business days, while the same-priced model with a yellow gold case and black sport band won't ship for 5 to 7 business days. The $12,000 edition also has a wait time of 3 to 5 days. The even more expensive models show a range in ship times, but none more than 5 to 7 days.

Keep in mind, though, that ordering the Apple Watch online through Apple is far from your only option. Apple opened up reservations for in-store purchases for the watch in June. And you can also pick up the watch from various boutique stores and other retailers around the world.

(Via AppleInsider)