The Apple Watch was Jony Ive’s baby
Ive was behind the rectangular design of the watch and also oversaw the software interface, meeting with software engineers almost daily and helping come up with the signature hexagonal grid of apps on the watch.
Ive diverged with other top-level executives on how to position the watch which he saw as a fashion accessory, while the other side viewed it as an extension of the iPhone. Ultimately, what happened was a compromise as Apple sold the Watch tethered to an iPhone, but also launched an exquisite gold version that was priced at up to $17,000.
But here is the interesting detail: within the first year, Apple Watch sales did not meet internal expectations at all. Apple sold 10 million watches against an internal forecast of 40 million sales!
The gold Apple Watch might have been the most hurtful loss as thousands of these watches ended up unsold.
Shortly after, Jony Ive told Tim Cook he wanted to step back from daily management duties.