News Worms
News Worms


IDC: Wearable Market Drivers are Clearly Health and Fitness For Now

IDC: Wearable Market Drivers are Clearly Health and Fitness For Now

Apple shipped an estimated 4.6 million Apple Watch units in the fourth quarter of 2016, up from an estimated 4.1 million in the year-ago quarter, according to IDC.

The quarter saw Fitbit dominate with 19.2 per cent of the market, whilst Xiaomi overtook Apple to second with 15.2 per cent. Apple sat in third with 13.6 per cent followed by Garmin (6.2 per cent) and Samsung (5.6 per cent).

Jitesh Ubrani, Senior Research Analyst for IDC Mobile Device Trackers, said, "With the entrance of multiple new vendors with strengths in different industries, the wearables market is expected to maintain a positive outlook, though much of this growth is coming from vendor push rather than consumer demand".

Improving shipments of ear-worn devices, referred to in the report as "hearables", and clothing with sensors woven in, while still relatively tiny, showed promise that the market is becoming about more than just wrist-worn devices, according to IDC.

"Meanwhile, smart wearables are also evolving", he continued.

Apple does not officially disclose Apple Watch sales, instead grouping the device under its "Other Products" category in earnings results. In other countries, Fitbit is challenged by lower cost competitors overseas. For the year 2016, the shipments advanced 25 percent as fresh vendors entered the fray. Xiaomi posted the biggest gains with a 96.2% year-over-year growth in the quarter and 5.2 million units shipped, bumping Apple from the number two position it held in the fourth quarter in 2015. However, the company did manage to significantly raise its average selling price (ASP) to $258 in the fourth quarter from under $200 previous year.

"This will also solve another key issue: freeing the device from the smartphone, creating a standalone experience". Garmin caters to a more dedicated fitness audience and this has worked well as many of its users began to graduate from simpler fitness trackers to more sophisticated and expensive sport watches like those offered in the Fenix line. Samsung remains the only major company offering cellular-enabled wearables.

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