Loading...

Smartwatch shipments rise 4x annually in Q2 CY22

Smartwatch shipments rise 4x annually in Q2 CY22
Photo Credit: 123RF.com
17 Aug, 2022
Loading...

Smartwatches remained the fastest growing category of devices among wearable gadgets, with shipments growing nearly four fold year-on-year (YoY) even as the overall demand for consumer electronics tapered, according to market research firm International Data Corporation (IDC). The firm’s Monthly Wearable Devices Tracker for the June quarter stated that shipments of smartwatches rose from 1.6 million units in the June quarter last year, to 6.4 million units this year.

According to IDC India, wearable devices include smart wristbands, smartwatches and ‘earwear’ — which stand for true wireless earphones. The latter account for the largest share of shipments in wearable devices, with over 17.3 million units of true wireless earphones shipped in the June quarter — up from 9.2 million a year ago.

Adding up, the overall wearables market in India saw its shipments more than double — growing at a rate of 112.8% YoY to ship over 23.8 million units across all three categories of devices in the wearables category.

Loading...

Interestingly, the June quarter saw a steep growth pace for wearables in India, which grew at 20.1% YoY to ship 13.9 million units in the March quarter. The growth comes as analysts warn of falling demand across most consumer electronics categories — fuelled by inflation concerns pushing back discretionary expenditures.

Explaining this growth pace, Navkendar Singh, associate vice-president of devices research at IDC India, South Asia and Australia-New Zealand, said that price reductions of devices by brands across each of these three categories, along with “aggressive” e-commerce sales and deals on smartwatches and true wireless earphones, have helped the segment buckle the trend of dwindling demand across other categories.

Singh added that the source of demand for these devices are no longer tier I (or metropolitan) markets in India, but “aspirational consumers in smaller cities and towns”.

Loading...

IDC India’s report added that the first half of the year thus saw brands ship 37.8 million wearable devices in India — a figure that could rise by close to 37% sequentially in the second half of the year. Singh said that wearable shipments for 2022 could reach 90 million units in India, thus suggesting strong festive season sales of smartwatches and true wireless earbuds.

In the second half alone, wearable devices shipments could cross 50 million units. An increasing number of launches could also contribute to this growth. Indian wearables maker Nexxbase (which goes under the brand name Noise), for instance, unveiled a new smartwatch on Wednesday as well — priced at ₹3,499.

The strong sales of wearable devices come as brands look to improve the overall feature set of devices in this segment. In May this year, Sameer Mehta, co-founder and chief product officer of Indian wearables brand boAt, told Mint that features such as blood oxygen monitor, Bluetooth-based handsfree calling, and better performance are increasingly trickling down to more affordable devices.

Loading...

Aayushi Kishore, co-founder of fellow homegrown wearables brand Fire-Boltt, said that alongside focusing on improvements to the hardware, work is also being done to improve the software and user experience on affordable wearable gadgets — hence improving the overall usage experience.

In the long run, industry stakeholders hope that such efforts would improve sales — which IDC’s numbers appear to validate.