The scaled-down Apple Watch follows a budget iPhone the company released five months ago as the economy turned crater and the unemployment rate surged above levels reached during the Great Recession more than a decade ago.
Apple also got to grips with a new high-end watch model, next-generation iPad, and some new subscription services during a virtual event on Tuesday.
The company usually launches its new iPhones around this time of year too, but the production problems caused by the pandemic have delayed their release until at least October.
CEO Tim Cook made no mention of iPhones during the hour-long presentation at the company’s massive, but now largely empty, headquarters in Cupertino, California.
The Apple Watch has never matched the popularity of the iPhone, but it dominates the smartwatch market.
Canaccord Genuity analyst T. Michael Walkley estimates that approximately 51 million Apple Watches will be sold this year, an increase of five percent over the previous year.
The research company GlobalData puts Apple’s share of the $ 87 billion smartwatch market at around 60 percent.
The new discount model called Apple Watch SE sells for $ 429 and is available starting Friday.
The price is a discount from the $ 599 Apple is asking for the next version of its high-end watch, the Series 6.
Apple watches sold for an average of $ 520, according to Walkley’s calculations.
Apple has added other features that allow the watch to monitor the health of its owner, including a sensor that can read blood oxygen levels.
The function specific to the Series 6 could be timely as COVID-19 often attacks the lungs.
Apple also announced a new fitness subscription service for its watches for $ 14.99 per month, as well as a new option that will bring their existing music, video, news, and game services together into one package that will cost at least 19, Costs $ 99 per month.
A new iPad with a 10.9-inch screen is also being offered and is available in new colors. The new tablet costs Australian customers between $ 499 and $ 699.
The Services division also includes Apple’s App Store, which is subject to regulatory scrutiny to collect a commission of up to 30 percent for products sold through other companies that have no choice but to use the store. to reach the mostly wealthy consumers who buy iPhone products.