Strategy Analytics revealed the global smartwatch market grew by 20 percent in the first quarter from last year despite the impact of COVID-19. The organization noted Apple dominated the sector by claiming a 55 percent share of the market. Also, the group believes the industry will experience a sharp decline in the current period before making a swift recovery.
Everybody Loves the Apple Watch
According to the business intelligence firm, Apple shipped 7.6 million smartwatches in the first three months of 2020, up 23 percent from 22.6 percent from last year. Consumers increased demand for the Cupertino, California-based corporation’s flagship wearable helped it raise its market share to its highest level since 2018.
The conglomerate’s March period sales reflected a 22.5 percent year-over-year surge in Wearables, Home, and Accessories, but it did not specify what caused the revenue jump.
Although Apple’s sales spike is surprising in light of the coronavirus pandemic, its smartwatch sector supremacy is not. The company pioneered the concept of commercial wearables when it released its first timepiece in 2015. The corporation shipped 4 million units its first quarter in release, equivalent to 75 percent of the market. While rivals have since chipped away at its dominance with compelling competing products, its segment leadership remains unchallenged.
In fact, the iPhone maker reportedly outsold the entire Swiss watch industry last year. Tom’s Hardware states Apple will release a new Watch this fall with sleep tracking and blood oxygen monitoring, so the king’s reign will likely extend into 2021.
Other Smartwatch Makers Also Saw Growth in Q1
The first quarter of 2020 also saw digital smartwatch makers Garmin and Samsung make significant gains.
Garmin, best known for making murder-solving GPS units, shipped 1.1 million devices last period, up 37.5 percent from 2019. Strategy Analytics also noted the brand raised its market share by 14 percent in the year previous. The organization attributes the company’s success to its mounting popularity with fitness enthusiasts and its smartwatches’ eye-catching OLED screens.
Samsung finished second in the quarterly sales charts by moving 1.9 million units in Q1, but its market share dipped by 1 percent from 2019. The South Korean conglomerate’s slipping footprint is due to increased competition and COVID-19 depressing demand in its home region.
As Garmin and Samsung’s timepieces are more affordable than Apple’s, it will be interesting to see if the two corporations experience an iPhone SE-style bump in sales.
Positive Long-Term Outlook
Despite its robust first-quarter growth, Strategy Analytics predicts the smartwatch market will contract significantly in Q2.
The organization believes coronavirus pandemic related lockdown in the United States and Europe hurt orders in the current quarter. However, the firm also predicts a mid-term recovery as COVID-19 restrictions ease, and consumers seek out stylish health monitoring devices. The group also anticipates the viral outbreak driving young and old buyers to invest in medical technology.
As it happens, one brand, in particular, might benefit from an increase in the public’s embrace of personal wellness: Samsung. The corporation intends to release a range of blood pressure monitoring smartwatches this fall. With an estimated 972 million people currently suffering from hypertension worldwide, the firm’s wearables have a lot of growth potential.