Apple Watch Continued to Lead Global Smartwatch Shipments in Q1 With 55 Percent Share: Strategy Analytics


Apple Watch has maintained its lead in the global smartwatch market with a share of 55 percent in the first quarter of 2020, according to a report by research firm Strategy Analytics. The overall smartwatch market is reported to have seen 20 percent growth annually — thanks to nearly 14 million units shipped in the first quarter of this year. After Apple, Samsung has managed to hold the second position, while Garmin, the company that is popular for its fitness-focussed wearables, rose to third.

Strategy Analytics reports that Apple shipped 7.6 million units of the Apple Watch worldwide in the first quarter of this year. This shows an year-over-year (YoY) increase of 23 percent from the 6.2 million shipments record reported in the same quarter last year. With the increase in shipments, the Cupertino company managed to expand its share from 54 percent to 55 percent — its highest level for two years.

“Apple Watch continues to fend off strong competition from hungry rivals like Garmin and Samsung. Apple Watch owns half the worldwide smartwatch market and remains the clear industry leader,” said Neil Mawston, Executive Director at Strategy Analytics, in a statement.

Followed by Apple, Samsung continued its second position in the global smartwatch market with a shipments record of 1.9 million in the first quarter. This was slightly up from 1.7 million a year ago. However, the overall share of the company in the global smartwatch market has dipped from 15 percent to 14 percent during the past year. Strategy Analytics noticed that the company’s growth was impacted by the coronavirus lockdown in South Korea and renewed competition from players such as Garmin.

Garmin, on the other hand, has managed to make a comeback to the third position — overtook Fitbit — with a shipments result of 1.1 million units worldwide in the first quarter of this year. This was 38 percent increased annually from 0.8 million in the first quarter last year.

Smartwatch vendor Q1 2019 shipments (in millions) Q1 2020 shipments (in millions) YoY change (in percentage)
Apple 6.2 7.6 22.6
Samsung 1.7 1.9 11.8
Garmin 0.8 1.1 37.5
Others 2.7 3.1 14.8
Total 11.4 13.7 20.2

Sharp decline expected in Q2 due to COVID-19
Strategy Analytics predicts that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, global smartwatch shipments will drop sharply in the second quarter. “Sales in Europe and the US have inevitably been hit by virus lockdown in recent months. However, the second half of this year and beyond will see a decent rebound, as consumers worldwide steadily regain confidence and more retail stores reopen,” said Woody Oh, Director at Strategy Analytics.

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