Canalys reported the global smartwatch market ducked the effects of the Covid-19 (coronavirus) pandemic in Q1, with shipments up 12 per cent year-on-year.
The company highlighted an apparent lessening in North American shipments, noting the period was the first where the region accounted for less than a third of the 14.3 million units shipped globally. China benefitted from an e-SIM push, with numbers 66 per cent higher than Q1 2019.
Research analyst Cynthia Chen said China will be the “key smartwatch growth driver” this year due to its “strongly recovered economy” and launches from Huawei, Xiaomi and Oppo.
Apple remained market leader despite shipments dropping from 6 million in Q1 2019 to 5.2 million: analyst Vincent Thielke said Apple Watch shipments were slow in Europe and North America as customers looked to AirPods as “a must-have accessory”.
The US company gained 4 million new users in the quarter, bringing its total base to an estimated 70 million.
Huawei placed second with the largest rate of increase in unit shipments, up from 1 million to 2.1 million, due to a strategy of packing smartwatches with its latest P40 smartphone range.
Samsung ranked third on shipments of 1.8 million units (up 46 per cent), with Garmin fourth on 1.1 million (39 per cent): Canalys noted both made gains in Europe and the US.
Fitbit shipments decreased 21 per cent to 900,000 units.Subscribe to our daily newsletter Back