It has been tales of woe for companies and even countries since the coronavirus pandemic started, but it isn’t the same story for smartwatch makers
As the confirmed cases of the deadly virus infection continue to rise, economies around the world have crumbled. And the reason isn’t far-fetched; companies have had to shut down operations, those who haven’t are barely generating revenue, some have even had to lay off some of their staff.
However, global smartwatch shipments have defied the curve. Despite the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, Strategy Analytics says the market has continued to grow even through the first 3 months of the year with Apple Watch still in the first place.
Steven Waltzer, a Senior Analyst at Strategy Analytics, said, “Global smartwatch shipments grew 20 percent annually from 11.4 million units in Q1 2019 to 13.7 million in Q1 2020. Despite considerable headwinds from the Covid-19 scare, global demand for smartwatches continued to grow. Smartwatches are selling well through online retail channels, while many consumers have been using smartwatches to monitor their health and fitness during virus lockdown.”
Neil Mawston, Executive Director at Strategy Analytics, added, “Apple Watch shipped 7.6 million units worldwide in Q1 2020, rising an above-average 23 percent from 6.2 million in Q1 2019. Apple’s global smartwatch market share has grown 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.”
However, things might soon be on the downward swirl as Strategy Analytics foresee that the market might feel the scourge of the pandemic too.
Woody Oh, Director at Strategy Analytics, added, “We expect global smartwatch shipments to slow sharply in the second quarter of 2020, due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. 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.
“Smartwatches continue to have excellent long-term prospects, as younger and older people will become more health-conscious in a post-virus world. Smartwatches can monitor vital health signs, such as oxygen levels, and consumers may find comfort in having a virtual health assistant strapped to their wrist.” Oh added.