In what was quite possibly one of the shortest lived and most apathetically received tech fads of the last ten years, it has been revealed that sales of smartwatches haven’t been making the grade.
In a report from market analyst IDC, it was shown that smartwatch sales during in the third quarter of 2016 had dropped nearly 2.9 million units, around 51% of past sales during the same time period in 2015. Even Apple couldn’t escape the hit:
“Its first-generation Watches accounted for the majority of volumes during the quarter, leading to the significant downturn for the quarter. Its Series One and Series Two did little to stem that decline, although with lower price points and improved experiences, Apple could be heading for a sequential rebound in 4Q16,”
The excitement and hype behind the development and release of smartphones hasn’t carried over to the sales, and the huge number of various devices flooding the market have gone, for the most part, untouched by consumers burdened by choice.
Fitness devices have been by far the most successful, with Apple and Fitbit fighting it out for top place in the wearable scene. Apple has seen the greatest sales, but also some of the largest and fastest declines, with a year on year drop of around 71.6%. They were only beaten by Lenovo with shipments down by 73.3%. Sheesh!
Garmin was the only brand that was able to secure some kind of foothold in the market, jumping from 100,000 sold in 2015 to 600,000 sold in 2016.
Market analysts have speculated that these shocking results are due to a lack of updated hardware and competition from traditional watchmakers. Others have claimed that the public consensus views smartwatches as clumsy and redundant tools next to a much more powerful smartphone devices, therefore rendering this new branch of tech somewhat pointless.
No matter the reason and not matter the reassurances that are spilling out in retaliation to the news, it’s clear the smartwatch industry isn’t doing so great.