ROLEX VS. APPLE WATCH: Which is the Better Watch?

Rolex vs Apple Watch

The Apple Watch was introduced in 2014 and launched on April 24, 2015, with the 1st Generation Apple Watch. Apple has made many upgrades and currently has produced the Series 6.

The Apple Watch became the bestselling wearable device selling 4.2 million watches in its first year. There have been many questions about how the Apple Watch would affect sales of mechanical watches such as the Swiss brand, Rolex.

This article takes an in-depth look at the luxury Rolex watch and the Apple Watch to determine which is better.

Key Features of Apple & Rolex Watches

Rolex Watch:

  • Automatic movement: All moving parts of Rolex watches are hand-assembled and tested.
  • Waterproof: All Rolex watches undergo two water resistance tests, and less than 1 in 1,000 fail the tests.
  • 904L steel: This steel is difficult and expensive to produce, but because it looks better than the popular 316L steel, Rolex makes all its watches with it. Rolex is the only company that uses 904L steel to produce watches that we know.

Apple Watch:

  • Cellular functionality: You can make and receive calls with the Apple Watch. You can also easily transfer a call from your Apple Watch to your iPhone.
  • ECG readings: From Series 4, Apple included the electrocardiogram (ECG) functionality to the watch.
  • Find your iPhone: Use the Apple Watch to find your lost iPhone.
  • Blood oxygen tracking: Through machine learning, you can use Siri to get information such as your heart rate after exercising.
  • Track sleep with Apple Watch: With the Series 6, the Apple Watch now tracks sleep.
  • Check your VO2 Max: A new addition to watchOS 7 is VO2 max. The watch will show your fitness stats and determine your score, which is your VO2 max estimate. VO2 max is calculated based on your heart rate, speed, and distance traveled during a run.
  • Unlock your MacBook from your Watch: Skip passwords and use your watch to unlock your MacBook. Your MacBook has to be a 2013 or a newer Mac model running macOS Sierra 10.12 or later. You also have to pair the two devices together and make sure they are both signed in to the same iCloud account. You should also set your security preferences on your MacBook.
  • Listen to music on your Apple Watch: The cellular functionality enables you to stream Apple music directly on your Apple Watch. You can even add your mp3 music. The watch needs to pair with your AirPods for music. Create your playlist like you would on your phone, and if you haven’t subscribed to Apple Music, you can use the Spotify app on the watch. You can add and play music from your Spotify library on the app.



Rolex watches work by automatic moving rotors that swing as you move your wrist, transferring energy to the mainspring. The watch can hold the charge up to two days, depending on the model.

To get the watch working again, you have to wind the movement manually. Apple watches, on the other hand, require charging. The battery can last 18 hours when charged overnight.


The Apple Watch wins against Rolex in terms of accuracy. It syncs with an atomic clock, which is accurate to one-hundredth of a second.

The Rolex watch is not synced with an atomic clock and only offers an accuracy of one-tenth of a second. So it might be off by two seconds on any given day.

Water Resistance

Rolex wins this round because they make deep-sea watches, while the Apple Watch provides resistance from small amounts of water on its surface.


Apple watches cost from $399 to just over $1,000, while Rolex watch prices start from $5,374 to almost $17,000.

Resale Value

The resale value of a watch matters the most and significantly impacts the demand for the watch. A pre-owned Rolex watch can sometimes cost even more than its original price.

On the other hand, an Apple Watch’s secondhand value decreases each passing day. The Apple Watch, like any technology, will have better versions as time goes by.

Hence the previous generations will become less valued. There will be software updates provided, but this usually stops after the first two to three years of a product’s release.

Paul Newman’s Rolex Cosmograph Daytona auctioned at over $17,700,000 in 2017. Technology advancements in mechanical watches are somewhat slower than smartwatches, but mechanical watches have higher resale value.


An Apple Watch comes with a one-year warranty, while a Rolex watch has a five-year warranty.


If you want to buy an Apple Watch, you can go online and order one immediately. Most complaints about Rolex center around its unavailability in the market.

It takes up to a year to make a Rolex, and there is a waiting list for professional steel Rolex watches. Rolex also has limited editions, which are not available for long.


The Apple Watch is in sync with the most accurate in the world, an atomic clock, which provides accuracy to one-hundredth of a second. The Rolex watch is not synced with an atomic clock and only offers an accuracy of one-tenth of a second.


Apple Watch batteries require charging, unlike the mechanical Rolex watch. After a while, the battery quality will start to deteriorate, and it will struggle to hold a charge, which is not the case with the Rolex.

Most Rolex watches are automatic, meaning they do not work with batteries. They can last for years.


The Rolex is a high-end watch, and it offers a wide range of styles and shapes and a variety of materials to choose from for production.

The Apple Watch also looks good, it has a modern tech look, and you can choose to personalize the interface to digital or analog. When the Apple Watch is inactive, it has a black screen.


The Apple Watch can track almost everything, from your location to your vitals. The Apple Watch can check the distance covered during exercise, calories burnt, and heart rate, making it perfect for tracking fitness performance and daily activity.

It also has Siri, the digital assistant. You can also check the time in other time zones. The Rolex has the functionality of a mechanical watch. You can’t tell the time in a different place, and you cannot make calls with them.

It has a rich watchmaking history. The best of its features is its certification of COSC. Both are amazingly iconic watches and are getting innovations and horological changes.

History / Brand Recognition

Rolex has been telling time since 1905, so it has over 100 years of history. Rolex has also seen some iconic moments. For example, it was the watch worn on the first-ever Mount Everest climb. Rolex is also the first company to make automatic waterproof watches.

The Apple Watch was launched in 2015 and is now one of the bestselling smartwatches today. When it comes to brand recognition and prestige, while Apple is one of the world’s leading tech giants, the Apple Watch does not stand a chance when compared to the Rolex.


We can compare the watches, but the fact remains that the two watches are not in competition. The Apple Watch is here to stay but will certainly not put the luxury Rolex watch out of business. They both serve different purposes.

Luxury watches and their many moving parts are fascinating to the eye and add a touch of class to the owner’s wardrobe. Precious ornaments like diamonds, gold, and silver used for designing these watches give them a special kind of appeal.

Like a beautiful piece of jewelry, a luxury watch is unique, has sentimental value to the owner, and is long-lasting. Tech enthusiasts will love to experiment with the Apple Watch. The device can sync with your iPhone, and you can use it daily to monitor your fitness level. It is more than a watch.

 There is enough room for both the Apple Watch and Rolex in the modern market. Nothing is stopping you from owning both. You can wear your Apple Watch daily and save your Rolex for special occasions, or wear them however you like.

We are a luxury watch seller, and we have all the luxury watch brands you love. At Exquisite Timepieces, you can even get pre-owned watches.