Global Shipments of Wearables Grew 29.7% YoY in 1Q20 [Chart]

Global Shipments of Wearables Grew 29.7% YoY in 1Q20 [Chart]

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Global shipments of wearable devices grew 29.7% year over year in the first quarter of 2020, reaching 72.6 million units, reports IDC. Notably, the growth was disproportionately spread across device types with wristbands and hearables growth offsetting declines in smart and basic watches.

Fueled by new product launches such as the Fitbit Charge 4 as well as aggressive price points from mainstays like Xiaomi and Huawei, the wristband category grew 16.2% during the quarter. Meanwhile, hearables grew 68.3% and accounted for 54.9% of the entire market.

"The hearables category was seemingly resilient to the market-suppressing forces caused by COVID-19," said Jitesh Ubrani, research manager for IDC Mobile Device Trackers. "Consumers were clamouring for these sophisticated earpieces not only for the abilty to playback audio but also to help them increase productivity, as many of them were forced to work from home and sought ways to reduce surrounding noise while staying connected to their smartphones and smart assistants."

IDC says COVID-19 caused an adverse effect on the supply chain for watches leading to shipment declines.

Global Shipments of Wearables Grew 29.7% YoY in 1Q20 [Chart]


1Q20 Wearables Company Highlights
● Apple was once again the top wearables company with 29.3% share and 21.2 million units. While Apple Watch shipments declined due to difficulties in the supply chain, the strength of the Beats and Airpods lineup was more than enough to offset the negative growth.

● In second place was Xiaomi, which shipped 7.3 million wristbands and watches. The company's expansion outside China combined with a shift in distribution from etailers to online and offline retailers has allowed the company to build a comfortable lead over most other brands.

● Samsung ranked third as its hearables/earwear business accounted for 74% of its total shipments during the quarter, up from 58.9% in 1Q19. The latest generation of Galaxy Buds and Buds+ have been very well received as the two models shipped over 4 million units during the quarter.

● Huawei and its subsidiary Honor captured fourth place and even managed to grow in China despite the lockdown thanks to a strong online presence and close ties with retailers. Even outside China, the company succeeded at growing in Europe, Latin America, and the other Asian markets though long-term success in these markets remains questionable due to the political pressures from multiple countries.

● Fitbit declined 26.1% during the quarter as much of the company's production was based in China, which faced supply issues for multiple weeks during the quarter. While the company remains as one of the leading brands in the wearables space and still has a large user base along with promising tech, the lack of a hearable and strong competition from the likes of Apple and Samsung in key markets has suppressed the company's ability to grow.

Check out the charts below for more details...

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Global Shipments of Wearables Grew 29.7% YoY in 1Q20 [Chart]

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