Since last one year, wearable market has changed quite dramatically. Fitbit, the brand that sort of represented fitness bands and wearables is now going downhill, but overall shipments of wearables have been rising, leading to Apple and Xiaomi taking equal first place.
According to a report by the International Data Corporation (IDC), Apple and Xiaomi are leading the wearable market, where both companies shipped 3.6 million devices in the first quarter. This was a huge 64.1 percent growth for Apple, although Xiaomi was actually down 3.3 percent.
In general, this sudden rise in the graph is a big win for wearables, with a year-on-year industry growth of 17.9 percent, wherein shipments went from 20.9 million last year during the same time period to 24.7 million this year. The exception was Fitbit, which fell to third position after its shipments shrank 37.7 percent. RELATED: Apple Watch leads wearable tech market in Q1 2017, fitness band hits first ever decline: Report
Apple saw sustained demand for its Watches nearly two quarters after the Series 1 and Series 2 versions launched to the market, and recorded the second highest year-over-year growth among the leading companies. The Series 1 and 2 have been a welcome change from the higher priced and undifferentiated experience found on the original Apple Watch from a year ago, attracting both first-time users and those seeking to replace their previous Watches.
“Fitbit finds itself in the midst of a transformation as user tastes evolve from fitness bands to watches and other products,” said IDC’s Ramon Llamas. “This allowed Xiaomi to throttle up on its inexpensives devices within the China market and for Apple to leverage its position as the leading smartwatch provider worldwide.” ALSO READ: Apple acquires Beddit, a popular Apple Watch and iOS sleep tracking platform
However, Llamas says don’t count Fitbit out already. “With a user base of 50 million, a strong presence within corporate wellness, and assets that keep it top of mind for digital health, Fitbit is well positioned to move into new segments and markets.”
Additionally, Samsung led all companies in year-over-year growth, nearly doubling its wearables volumes from a year ago. Driving volumes higher were its Gear S3 Frontier and Classic smartwatches, which in many markets had their first full quarter of availability, as well as its IconX headphones and Gear Fit 2 fitness band. ALSO READ: Samsung’s Tizen is now more popular than Android Wear, Apple WatchOS still dominates the market
“The market is arguably still in the first phase of development, where companies are focused on seeding wearables into the market,” said Jitesh Ubrani senior research analyst for IDC Mobile Device Trackers. “It’s all about getting people accustomed to the idea of wearing a device. And the opportunity remains very enticing for traditional and fashion watch brands as the scale of the consumer electronics market far surpasses their world.