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Apple Watch Series 2 sees strong demand from upgraders, millennials

According to fresh statistics released Tuesday, a sizable chunk of Apple Watch Series 2 pre-orders went to customers who own the original Apple Watch, while millennials replaced Gen X as the largest buyer demographic.

Drawing findings from a panel of online shoppers who pre-ordered Apple Watch Series 2 from Sept. 9 through Sept. 12, Slice Intelligence reports nearly one-third of customers previously purchased Apple's original model. The figures are important for the fledgling wearable, as brand loyalty often determines whether or not a bleeding edge tech product finds traction from a wider consumer base.

In a shift to Apple Watch's customer demographic, millennials were the largest pre-order group over the four day sample period, accounting for some 39 percent of initial Series 2 purchases. Millennials take over for Gen X buyers, the largest buying group during the pre-order period of the first Apple Watch model last year, the firm says.

Interestingly, while Series 2 pre-order customers were predominantly men, the device saw a 6 percent uptick in women buyers compared to last year's original device. Specifically, women accounted for 26 percent of pre-orders, up from 20 percent with the original Apple Watch.

Echoing a trend set last year, early adopters appear to be gravitating toward larger Series 2 model, with 66.6 percent of buyers opting for the 42mm version instead of 38mm variants.

Diving deeper into Slice's pre-order statistics, 69.8 percent of buyers opted for the sport band configuration, 54.2 percent of whom chose black as their preferred color. Customers looking for woven nylon bands were also partial to black, with 46.2 percent of buyers selecting that particular setup. The penchant for black bands mirrors last year's pre-order cycle.

Apple announced Apple Watch Series 2 at a special event earlier this month. The wearable is aesthetically similar to its predecessor, but contains a raft of internal improvements including a faster dual-core processor, GPS radio, brighter display, larger battery and water resistance down to 50 meters.

Pricing starts at $369 for a 38mm aluminum version and moves up to $1,299 for the new 42mm white ceramic edition.