Smartwatch Demand Expected To Surge As Health, Mobile Payment Features Attract Consumers

The Apple-dominated market of smartwatches is expected to significantly grow in the next four years. A new report is predicting the demand for smartwatches to double as more consumers take notice of the health and mobile payment features of the wearables. 

Industry watchers told Korea Herald Sunday that they are anticipating the global smartwatch market to double by 2022. The reason they cited for this prediction is the fact that more consumers are becoming aware of the different functions of smartwatches, especially their uses that are applicable to the healthcare setting and mobile banking.

The International Data Corporation is echoing the same thing after compiling data from the industry. The market intelligence provider said combined global shipments are expected to reach 43.6 million units this 2018. Then by 2022, the figure is predicted to reach 84.1 million, which is almost twice as the shipments for this year. 

IDC Mobile Device Trackers senior research analyst Jitesh Ubrani pointed out in a statement that the demand for smartwatches is surging because consumers are learning about their new and more advanced features. “Consumers are finally starting to understand and demand the utility of a smartwatch. At present, fitness uses lead by a mile but mobile payments and messaging are starting to catch on,” Ubrani wrote. 

Ubrani went on to say that cellular connectivity is also another reason for the stronger demand. By including cellular connectivity, new features like music streaming and other health-related features make smartwatches more interesting and useful in the eyes of consumers. 

The bold prediction is expected to mainly apply to the leading brands in the smartwatch market. According to industry tracker Strategy Analytics, Apple’s Apple Watch series accounted for 60.4 percent of the market last year, making it the dominant player among all smartwatch manufacturers. 

Trailing behind Apple is Samsung Electronics. But it’s important to note that the gap between their market shares is quite large. Samsung has a market share of 10.6 percent, which already makes the South Korean company the only Apple rival to post a double-digit market share. This means all other smartwatch makers only have single-digit market shares. 

smartwatch Smartwatch demand is expected to double by 2020. Photo: Reuters/Paul Hanna

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