India smart wearables market managed to cross 100,000 shipments in one quarter, which was a first, according to numbers shared by research firm International Data Corporation (IDC). The overall wearables market stood at 897,000 in India, which was a 17 per cent year-over-year growth. The numbers shared are for the third quarter of 2018.
Smart wearables includes devices which can run third-party applications on their own, according to the research firm. This would mean Apple Watch, Samsung’s Galaxy Watch, etc. Wearables as a category includes all devices, such as the more basic fitness bands which continue to dominate the segment.
Further in the smart wearable/smartwatch department, Samsung beat Apple to claim the leadership in the quarter.
“It is too early to say that the India wearables market has started moving towards the smart wearables. However, vendors have started analyzing the big pricing gaps between the basic and smart wearables,” Jaipal Singh, Associate Research Manager, Client Devices , IDC India said on the numbers.
He points out that, “while vendors need to identify a new pricing sweet spot for smartwatches, the next challenge is to address the positioning of watches which is still seen as a vanity product in India. Also, many vendors haven’t explored the kid segment which can be a volume driver for this category as they are more comfortable with technology and new products.”
“The overall wearable market is expected to continue its double-digit growth in 2019. However, it will remain the dominant category in India for the next few years. We will see a few more smartwatches with cellular connectivity and also vendors will be looking to explore some of the new categories to provide the solutions around healthcare and lifestyle management”, Navkendar Singh, Associate Research Director, Client Devices & IPDS at IDC India said.
In the overall wearables segment, Xiaomi remains on top for the fifth consecutive quarter with 41 per cent market share. The Mi Band 3 was the most shipped wearable product ever in the history of wearables in India, according to the firm.
Still, Xiaomi saw shipments decline 20 per cent quarter-over-quarter. But on an yearly basis it registered a growth of 77 per cent.
Number two on the list was India-based GOQii, which has 19 per cent market share. GOQii is seeing success in the enterprise segment and nearly two-thirds of its shipments are to enterprises under the corporate wellness program, says IDC.
Titan was number three on the list with 70% sequential growth in its overall shipments. Samsung was number four, replacing Fitbit. The latter is no longer in the top five players in India.
For Samsung, the strategy of bundling the Gear Sport and Galaxy Watch with with Samsung Note 9, helped build momentum in this quarter. Fossil was able to capture the fifth position with triple-digit sequential growth thanks to its new Q Explorist Gen 3 watch.
IDC predicts that growth of basic wearables could slow down in India in 2019, as more users upgrade to smart wearables or smartwatches.