A LOT OF PEOPLE got an Apple Watch for Christmas, according to new research from Canalys which claims that six million were sold in the fourth quarter.
During Apple's fourth quarter earnings call, Apple CEO Tim Cook boasted that the firm had set "all-time revenue records" for the Apple Watch, but failed to cough on how many it had sold during the three-month period.
Canalys has done the maths and claims that Apple sold six million smartwatches in Q4, marking growth of 12 per cent year-on-year. This also saw the firm rake in $2.6bn in revenues which accounted for 80 per cent of total takings from the smartwatch market.
Overall, Canalys estimates that Apple sold 11.9 million watches in 2016, bagging 49 per cent of the market share for the year
"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."
Fitbit and Samsung also did well during the fourth quarter, bagging 17 and 15 per cent of total smartwatch sales, respectively.
Canalys expects Samsung to continue to see smartwatch success in the coming quarters, thanks to its Gear S3 Classic and Frontier wearables.
While the analyst firm doesn't mention Android Wear shipments, it says that Google's smartwatch OS "will bounce back significantly as new products that were postponed due to the delay of Android Wear 2.0 will soon be launched", putting Apple's lead under pressure.
Chinese firm Xiaomi also got a mention, with Canalys noting that the firm shipped a record 5.5 million Mi bands during Q4.
"New batches of Mi Band 2s were shipped in time for the Singles' Day shopping festival in China," said Low.
"Building on the success of its first-generation Mi Band, Xiaomi quickly expanded the availability of the Mi Band 2 across Asia Pacific and Central and Eastern Europe. India, Poland and Russia were key markets where the device was introduced alongside the company's Mi and Redmi smartphones through direct and third-party online channels." µ
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