Australia’s smartwatch market is forecast to expand at least 50 per cent this year due to the arrival of Apple Watch, according to a new report from analyst firm Telsyte.
An estimated 370,000 smartwatches were sold last year in the country, and as Australians warm up to wearable computing, the firm expects the market to surpass AUD400 million ($308 million) by 2018.
Samsung, an early entrant into the smartwatch market, is the market leader.
Smartwatches will become more appealing to consumers as new stylish and featured devices enter the market, with the 25- to 44-year-old age group representing the best sales opportunity in 2015, said Telsyte managing director Foad Fadaghi.
“There is a lot of anticipation for the Apple smartwatch, and our research indicates half of all smart fitness band users are looking to upgrade to a smartwatch, creating a potentially vibrant new product category,” Fadaghi said.
Telsyte research showed that more than 800,000 smart wristbands, such as those made by Fitbit and Garmin, were sold last year.
As with smartphones, consumers consider ease of use, pricing and battery life the most important attributes of smartwatches. Many current smartwatches have been criticised for their short battery life and limited unique features.