Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Apple Watch Effect - Fitness Band Market Likely to Shrink

Fitness Band
According to reports released recently by Canalys and Gartner, top positions in the smart-watch market have been claimed by Samsung and Motorola while other wearable market would probably shrink by next year. The wearable device market is still in its development stage with over 17 million wearable bands forecast to be shipped.

As per Canalys figures it shows about five million smart watches together with smart bands were shipped in the third quarter and despite a 37% increase on quarter on quarter sales, Android Wear devices made up 15% of the market while Samsung claimed 52% more than Motorola and Pebble on smart watch market, including others like LG and Sony, claiming 21%. Fitbit and Jawbone seems to be the two largest fitness band makers at the moment.

 Gartner on the other hand has published figures which suggest that the total wearable market which includes wristbands, chest straps, and smart-watches together with other fitness monitors could shrink by next year. The figures forecast the overall market shrinking from 70.2 million units in 2014 to 58.1 million in 2015 prior to rebounding in 2016 to 91.3 million units, inspite of the release of the Apple Watch. As per the forecast smart watches growth, from 18 million in 2014 to 21 million in 2015 would be small than the slump sales for fitness band which was 20 million to 17 million while other fitness monitors from 20 million to 12 million.

Temporary Dip 

Though Apple Watch will not be launched till early 2015, it is already expected to cause a reason for worry for its rivals. Fitness wearbles shipped next year is likely to drop according to Gartner and the segment include smart wristbands like the Jawbone Up, sports watches, smart garments, heart rate monitor chest straps and other fitness monitor.

The tech research firm as attributed the declines known as a `temporary dip’, to `an overlap in functionality between smart wristbands, and other fitness monitors as well as smart-watches. Apple Watch in particular which has several health features will also affect sales of the fitness connected devices.

Gartner analyst Angela McIntyre informed CNET that half of the consumers who have purchased fitness wristband would buy smart-watch instead next year. She also noted that the companies will ship 40 million smart-watches by 2015 quadruple the number which is expected this year. She further added that Apple has the capabilities to make up as much as half of the shipment volume by next year.

Hold up Purchase of Rival Devices 

In September Apple had made it first progress in the hot smart-watch market by presenting its three designs for its first wearable namely the stainless steel cased Apple Watch, the aluminium cased apple Watch Sport and the 18 karat gold cased Apple Watch edition and the smart-watches would go on sale early next year with a price of $349. Moreover the devices must be accompanied with an iPhone, and are compatible with the iPhone 5 5C, 5S, 6 and 6 Plus.

Apple managed to accomplish two things by announcing its first smart-watch more than a quarter before it availability for purchase. It first put the rumour to rest by informing and showing what is expected from its wearable and secondly, Tim Cook, CEO and his team led by design chief Jony Ive, got the would be smart-watch buyers to hold off the purchase of rival device from Samsung, LG, Motorola together with other competitors from trying to grab a share of the emerging market for these smart devices.

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