With the smartwatch market looking like its about to get a second lease of life with Android Wear 2.0, it is still Apple who are claiming the majority share of the worldwide market.
According to a new report from research firm Canalys, the Apple Watch accounted for 49% of the worldwide smartwatch market last year. Fitbit and Samsung came in at second and third position with 17% and 15%. Apple have been very vocal about the success of the Apple Watch, despite not knowing exact figures of the how many units it has sold. Don’t confuse not knowing with not willing to divulge the information publicly.
“Apple Watch generated more than US$2.6 billion in revenue for Apple in Q4 2016, making up nearly 80% of total smartwatch revenue,” the report said.
The increase in revenue was helped out by the new Apple Watch Series 2, which improved on the internal processing power and battery life of the previous generation, addressing some of the criticisms of the original model.
“Apart from the hardware and software improvements of the new models, Apple succeeded mainly due to its streamlined marketing and re-aligned pricing, which helped it address a wider audience,” said Analyst Jason Low. “The Series 1’s lower entry price and Apple’s more focused fitness messaging made its Watch both more attainable and more relevant.” Canalys estimates that Apple cumulatively shipped 11.9 million Watches in 2016, holding market share of around 50% globally for the year.
The release of the Apple Watch Series 2 allowed the company to reduce the price of the original watch but also included the updated processor, making it more financially accessible.
For 2017, Android Wear is set to make a comeback with a major update to the operating system and Samsung are set to bet big on the smartwatch market in an attempt to reclaim some of the 50% marketshare held by Apple.
The continual battle, however, is still finding that killer feature that makes a smartwatch a necessity rather than a nice-to-have accessory that compliments a smartphone. Whoever figures that out will own the smartwatch market.
Do you use your smartwatch daily? What is your go-to device? Let us know in the comments below.