Survey: 42 percent of wellness program users interested in an Apple Watch

By Jonah Comstock
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Apple WatchIt's no surprise that 94 percent of consumers currently enrolled in wellness programs have heard of the Apple Watch, given how much buzz is surrounding the forthcoming wearable. Perhaps more surprising is that less than half are interested in buying one.

HealthMine surveyed 750 consumers enrolled in wellness programs and found that only 42 percent were willing to buy an Apple Watch. Six percent hadn't heard of the watch, and 52 percent weren't interested regardless of cost.

Of the 42 percent willing to buy the device, only 12 percent were willing to pay $399 or more for the device (the watch will start at $349 when it launches on April 24th). Five percent were willing to pay $499 or more, and 3 percent were willing to pay $599. But most wanted a lower price point than Apple is offering, with 20 percent willing to buy the device at $199 and an additional 10 percent willing to pay $299.

“Personalization is key when it comes to consumer adoption of health tools,” Bryce Williams, CEO and President of HealthMine, said in a statement. “Customization will help separate the gadgets of the moment from tools with a material impact on consumer health and fitness. The Apple Watch with its powerful connection to valuable health data and limitless choices for personalization has the potential to shape and transform personal health monitoring. And, our survey indicates that Apple’s pricing is right. Early adopters are almost always willing to pay more.”

Apple Watch awareness is up from February, when another HealthMine survey found that 82 percent of people knew that the Apple Watch has health and fitness tracking features. The survey included responses from 561 consumers with company-sponsored health plans. It was conducted by Survey Sampling International (SSI) earlier this week and paid for by HealthMine.

The Apple Watch will track movement through a built-in accelerometer and heart rate through optical sensors in the back of the device. It will extrapolate further data from the GPS and WiFi on the user’s iPhone, which (contrary to certain predictions) will be required to use many of the features of the device.

In the initial built-in app suite there will be two apps: an Activity app for tracking day to day movement and a Workout app for more serious exercisers. A companion Fitness app on the iPhone will aggregate data from both apps, and share them into the already announced Health app. In addition, MobiHealthNews recently rounded up 19 health and fitness apps that will launch with the Apple Watch.