Apple Becomes World's Top Wearable Vendor, Surpassing Fitbit
According to a report from an analytic firm, Strategy Analytics, Apple was the world's largest wearable vendor for Q1, 2017. The Strategy Analytics reports that Apple sold 3.5 million Apple Watch units during the most recent quarter and surpassed Xiaomi, the previous market leader in wearables.
According to the data, global wearables shipments rose to 22 million units during Q1 2017 (Apple's fiscal Q2), up 21 percent from 18.2 million during the first quarter of 2016. Apple saw the biggest jump, increasing its shipments from 2.2 million during Q1 2016 to 3.5 million during Q1 2017. This 59 percent annual rise saw Apple capture 16 percent of the global market, overtaking Fitbit to become the world's largest wearables vendor.
Strategy Analytics attributes this growth to strong performance for the Apple Watch Series 2 thanks to its "enhanced styling, intensive marketing, and a good retail presence".
Fitbit, which was one of the wearable market leaders, saw its shipments decline from 4.5 million in Q1, 2016 to 2.9 million in Q1, 2017. This led the company's market share to fall from 24.7 percent to 13.2 percent in just a year. Xiaomi, the Chinese brand known for its cheap Mi Band wearable, also saw a decline in its shipments to 3.4 million (vs 3.4 million a year ago). This led the company's market share to fall to 15.5 percent from 20.9 percent a year ago.
Apple captured 16 percent global marketshare and overtook Fitbit to become the world's largest wearables vendor. The new Apple Watch Series 2 is selling relatively well in the US, UK and elsewhere, due to enhanced styling, intensive marketing and a good retail presence.
Xiaomi shipped 3.4 million wearables for 15 percent marketshare worldwide in Q1 2017. Demand for its popular Mi Band fitness range was broadly flat across its core markets of Asia.
Apple's strong performance can be attributed to the Apple Watch 2 which has been selling like hot cakes in developed countries like the US and UK since its launch last year. It is likely that Apple will end up losing its top spot in the wearable market in the next quarter as many consumers will potentially hold off on their purchase in hopes of Apple launching a new Apple Watch alongside the iPhone 8 in September.