SURPRISE! APPLE IS ONCE again the biggest seller in the smartwatch space for Q1 2019, according to new research from Counterpoint.
The Apple Watch maker snaffled up 35.8 per cent of the market, up from 35.5 per cent in the same period in 2018.
Once again a strong second place from "other", which cumulatively achieved 27.9 per cent of all shipments. That's no mean feat given each manufacturer in the 'other coalition' must have made up less than the 1.5 per cent Garmin achieved to qualify.
But the biggest single gain was made by Samsung, which managed to leapfrog Chinese manufacturer Imoo into second place, going from 7.2 per cent in Q1 2018 to 11.1 per cent for this year so far.
"Samsung grew exponentially at 127 per cent YoY as the Korean brand's market share jumped to 11 per cent in Q1 2019," Counterpoint senior analyst Sujeong Lim explained. "Its success was due to the latest Galaxy watch series which came with better battery life as well as a very traditional round clockface design."
Fitbit and Huawei also made decent gains, jumping to 5.5 per cent and 2.8 per cent, but Imoo, Amazfit, Fossil and Garmin all saw shrinkage, dropping to 9.2 per cent, 3.7 per cent, 2.5 per cent and 1.5 per cent of the marke, respectively.
Counterpoint's associate director Brady Wang expects growth to be driven by innovation, citing Nubia's ambitious/misguided attempt to combine a smartphone and a smartwatch. But he doesn't see it coming any time soon: "We are still in nascent stages in the evolution of smartwatch form-factors," he said. "We estimate flexible smartwatches will hit mainstream post-2025."
Seven years after Pebble kicked off the race for tech companies to colonise your wrist, smartwatches may still not exactly be mainstream, but they're clearly not going away either. µ
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