Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Mobile: Apple Watch Owns 75% of Smart Watch Market Means Not Many Android Users Use Wearbles

There is a report out today suggesting the Apple Watch commands 75% of the market.  And without Apple provide real sales numbers, no one knows for sure what its share of the market is.  However, even if Apple Watch share isn't really 75%, maybe say 60%, it does mean that a larger percentage of iPhone users are getting into the mobile wearable experience than Android users are.

And we know this because in terms of units sold, Android still dominate the market - between 75% to 80%.  You'd think if same percentage of Android users buy a compatible Android Wear device, they it would be Android Wear commanding 75% of the market instead of the Apple Watch.

There could be a couple of reasons why that is the case.  Early Android watch experiences were too raw and ahead of the time - most were not sanctioned by Google if anyone. Folks lik Samsung really jumped the gun thinking that be going to the market before its competitors, it could claim not only to be the first among its competitors including Apple and Motorola but ahead start on a large scape adoption.  That the early Galaxy watches were bulky and not as stylish as the ones on the market did not help.  Also, the features and UI appeared inelegant.  Essentially, Samsung ported the interface from the phone into a smaller screen.  In its defense, that was a natural thing to do.  As we know, Apple went with a different direction with their watch UI.

One other reason that affects Android wearable sales as well as Apple Watch is that missing killer apps or features that seem to be missing.  Notifications via watches regardless of any platform is nice but not a necessity.  This goes for Pebbles as well.  Again, the same can be said of being able to answer calls or returning messages.  Nice but not a dealbreaker.  So what are the must-have features?  That is perhaps what the market is largely waiting for.  It may be the case that as new features are added over the years, it will reach a point when having a weable device becomes indispensible. 

For instance, perhaps the wearabe devices in five years' time may provide us with more pertinent data about the user's surroundings and him- or herself help him or her make better decisions about routes, what to wear, and health-related informations.

Whatever the reasons are that users have yet to buy into wearables, deveopers and hardware designers have their work cut out for them.  As far as mobile is concerned, there is much more innovation in the phone market.  It's likely that even as the wearable market is trying to find its footing, its growth will depend on the phones are they paired with as well. 


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