Cheap smartwatches are winning and Samsung should beware

In 2015 it's low cost smartwatches that are catching consumer's attention
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The smartwatch revolution is well and truly underway and now we have an insight into who is winning and losing in the early stages of the race – and it's low price tag tech that's prevailing.

That's the key story from a new report from JeeQ Data, found by Phone Arena. The research and analytics firm uses the rankings and lists on Amazon and BestBuy to estimate sales, and the results are intriguing.

Essential reading: Best smartwatches 2017

In terms of devices sold in Q3 2015 on Amazon, somewhat unbelievably, JeeQ has the Soyan 2014 U8 U Watch as the best seller (a $20 Chinese smartwatch) with the Motorola Moto 360 close behind.

Third place went to Pebble (the original smartwatch) and then the 42mm Apple Watch came in fourth.

In terms of brands it was Motorola and Pebble that dominated over at Amazon, which looks promising given the imminent releases of the Pebble Time Round and new Moto 360.

At BestBuy the numbers were pretty much inline with Amazon's. Motorola was again the biggest seller with 27.93% of sales and Samsung close behind with 26.30%. Fitbit (20.11%) and Pebble's (17.17%) were next in the leaderboard, both of which have enjoyed decent sales in 2015.

Stats like this have to be taken with a slight pinch of salt, but it does show the popularity of Moto and Pebble in the eyes of consumers. But what it really reveals is the importance of price.

For much of 2015 the Moto 360 has been in a perpetual cycle of deals and price cuts, making it one of the biggest bargains of the year. And the price is a big part of Pebble's USP.

While big brands are working hard on conveying the importance of style in wearable tech, these results show that consumers are picking their devices with the price tag in mind. How else could a $20 Chinese smartwatch dominate on Amazon? And that will concern the likes of Samsung and Motorola which are both preparing high-priced, high-design releases in the coming weeks.


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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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