Led by Apple Watch, global smartwatch shipments grew at 48% year-on-year (YoY) in the first quarter of 2019, Counterpoint Research said on Friday. Top nine brands contribute to 75% of the market shipment and Samsung, Fitbit and Huawei grew exponentially in the quarter, said Counterpoint's "Global Smartwatch Tracker". Apple with 35.8% led the segment, followed by Samsung at 11.1% and a new Chinese brand imoo at third spot with 9.2% market share by shipments. "Apple Watch shipments grew a solid 49% YoY despite the weak demand for its iPhones," said Counterpoint Research Analyst Satyajit Sinha.
Apple continues to focus on the health-related features like ECG and fall detection in the Apple Watch Series 4. "The ECG capability in the Apple Watch is the most desirable feature," he added.
Apple has now received approval on its ECG features from healthcare authorities of Hong Kong and 19 other countries including France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK. Huawei's market share jumped to 3 per cent in Q1 2019 due to good traction for its latest Huawei Watch GT.
Huawei has shifted focus to sell more Huawei branded smartwatches whereas the smart bands are selling well under its Honor brand, said the report.
Samsung grew exponentially at 127% (YoY) as the Korean brand's market share jumped to 11% in Q1 2019. "Its success was due to the latest Galaxy watch series which came with better battery life as well as a very traditional round clock-face design," said Senior Analyst Sujeong Lim.