Apple Watch market share drops as Huawei and Samsung make a mark

And why this is good news for the smartwatch world
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The Apple Watch has lost 10% of its market share, as the likes of Huawei, Samsung and Garmin posted record sales in Q1 2020 – according to new analysis.

The latest figures from Canalys back up previous reports that Huawei has taken the smartwatch market by storm with its Huawei Watch GT range over the last year, with a 113% year-on-year increase in shipments.

Add that to a resurgent Garmin (+39% YOY) that’s making noise in the smartwatch world with its sport-focussed Vivoactive 4 and Garmin Venu, plus the popular Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2, which has boosted shipments 46% YOY for the South Korean giant.

Finally, it seems that the Apple Watch has serious competition on its hands.

Canalys has the Apple Watch actually decreasing in terms of overall shipments year-on-year, with 5.2 million smartwatches shipped compared to 6 million in 2019.

To put those numbers in context, Huawei – the nearest competitor – shipped 2.1 million smartwatches, and “others” managed 3.3 million. So Apple is still killing it in the smartwatch world.

But the combined strength of the rest of the market is starting to eat into Apple’s share. It’s had 10% knocked off its market share down to 36.3% in Q1 2020 from 46.7% in Q1 2019.

That won’t worry Apple too much. The fact that the Apple Watch only works with iPhone means it was never sustainable to that kind of market share – and there was always an opportunity for rivals to comeback with low cost, Android compatible devices.

The drop in Apple Watch sales is likely to be more of a concern for the Cupertino based company, but that’s likely to be attributed to the Covid-19 lockdown in China which is a huge market for Apple.

But for those of us that champion wearables, it’s good to see that users on the other side of the smartphone divide getting involved with quality devices.

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James Stables


James is the co-founder of Wareable, and he has been a technology journalist for 15 years.

He started his career at Future Publishing, James became the features editor of T3 Magazine and and was a regular contributor to TechRadar – before leaving Future Publishing to found Wareable in 2014.

James has been at the helm of Wareable since 2014 and has become one of the leading experts in wearable technologies globally. He has reviewed, tested, and covered pretty much every wearable on the market, and is passionate about the evolving industry, and wearables helping people achieve healthier and happier lives.

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