Wearable tech shipments grew by 24% in 2020, as the segment enjoyed rampant growth in face of the global pandemic. And while smartwatch popularity continues, fitness trackers are still on the rise.
That’s the main finding of the latest wearables forecast by analyst firm CCS Insight, which found that a focus on working out at home, health features and kids wearables fuelled 193 million wearables shipped worldwide.
The report names Apple, Huawei, Samsung, Garmin, Fitbit and new-entrant Amazfit accounted for 60% of the market.
Apple is still top of the pile and its shipments grew year on year (43 million up from 37 million in 2019) but its huge market share shrank from 55% to 47%.
And CCS Insight also singled out Wear OS for criticism, claiming that the smartwatch platform accounted for only 3% of shipments in 2020.
However, Huawei was the biggest winner. The company shipped 18 million wearables in 2020, up from just 4 million in 2019. The company has garnered plenty of attention for its Huawei Watch GT 2 range, mixing a budget price tag with long battery life. And as we reported, the company has just announced that its smartwatches will support third party apps. This backs up IDC data from June 2020.
Fitbit also posted modest growth, shipping 7.5 million trackers up from 5.8 million in 2020. As did Garmin, which grew to 3.4 million shipments from 2.7 million, according to the CCS Insight report.
|Smartwatch brand excluding kids watches (shipped units)|
|Apple||37.1 million||43.6 million|
|Huawei||4 million||18 million|
|Samsung||8 million||11 million|
|Fitbit||5.86 million||7.5 million|
|Huami||3.5 million||4.1 million|
|Garmin||2.75 million||3.4 million|
Data from CCS Insight
While it’s interesting to see the winners and losers, what about the next few years?
Firstly, CCS Insight predicts the wearables market to double in size, to 388 million units by 2025.
It also predicts a huge growth for kids smartwatches. After a tough year with so many kids at home, the company predicts the market to boom in 2021, with 32% year-on-year growth. That may come as a surprise, as the company notes that 90% of sales are in China – but we could see that trend rapidly expanding into the West.
Apple has encroached into this area already by enabling its LTE devices to be used as kids smartwatches. However, the market isn’t currently dominated by the traditional wearables names with companies like Vtech and Xplora owning the biggest share. We suspect this could change in 2021.
Of course these are just projections, but one thing is clear: wearables are very much here to stay.