Wednesday, 12 February 2014

Fitbit and Samsung market leaders in fitness bands and smart watch sector, reckons Canalys

ABI Research recently licked its finger and raised it to the breeze, predicting 90 million wearable devices will be shipped in 2014.

Now rival market intelligence outfit Canalys has got more specific (if more pessimistic), suggesting 17 million wearable bands will ship in 2014. It reckons 9 million will be fitness bands like Fitbit Force, while 8 million will be smart watches like Pebble.

Shipments are predicted to rise to 23 million units in 2015; a 35 percent rise.

Looking at the current situation, Canalys has considered the market share of the key competitors in each sector. For what it calls "basic wearable bands", it gives Fitbit a 58 percent of the global market, followed by Jawbone at 21 percent.

That's probably about right as general consensus - which I agree with - is that Fitbit's devices are the best, with Jawbone, Nike and the rest struggling to catch up.

Surprisingly, however, Canalys thinks that Samsung is leading when it comes to smart watches. This is surprisingly, as though the company has spend tens of millions of marketing dollars, its Galaxy Gear watch is generally considered to be useless.

Similarly, devices from second placed Sony have not found much critical acclaim, leaving Pebble - in third place with 16 percent market share - in a stronger position than the numbers suggest.

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