The past few years have certainly been a time of growth for the smartwatch market. As more and more companies produce new smartwatches and other wearable products, an increasing number of consumers have likewise adopted more wearable tech. In relation to this, new data from research firm Canalys shows an interesting trend of sales numbers in the wearables market.
According to the report, wearable band shipments worldwide went down 4%, amounting only to 41.7 million units in Q1 2022. By comparison, wristwatch devices (made up of both basic watches and smartwatches) were responsible for over 76.6% of all wearable band shipments in the same quarter, resulting in 15% growth with 32 million units.
Sherry Jin, Canalys Research Analyst stated that consumers now lean towards purchasing watches over simpler fitness bands. “With bigger displays, richer features and longer battery life, they believe watches are better able to fulfil their health-tracking and digital lifestyle needs. Basic watches are positioned as an affordable step-up from basic bands, suitable for price-conscious consumers with growing expectations as to what wearables can do.”
It’s important to note that the report classifies “watches” as “basic watches,” which “run rudimentary real-time operating systems but lack support for third-party apps, as opposed to smartwatches, which run fully-fledged operating systems with third-party app support,” as mentioned by Canalys.
The report also adds that Apple was able to stay on top thanks to strong demand for the Apple Watch Series 7. It’s also revealed that Samsung was beaten by Huawei for second place, despite a 53% growth, although the latter still faces a declining trend due to cuts in its smartphone business. Meanwhile, Xiaomi placed fourth, followed by Garmin in fifth place overall, as indicated by Canalys specialist Cynthia Chen in the report.