SemiExpo 2022 » Slow-down in the wearable electronics industry
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06 June 2018

IDC analysts report a significant slowdown in the world market of portable electronics in the first quarter of 2018. Deliveries of devices have grown only by 1.2% year-on-year, to 25.1 million units. For comparison, in the same period of 2017, an increase of 18% was recorded.

Experts associate the weakening of dynamics with the decline in the segment of basic portable electronics, such as fitness trackers. Their supplies decreased by 9.2%. However, regression was compensated by more expensive smart devices manufactured by Apple, Fitbit and other brands. Shipments of “smart” wearable gadgets have grown by 28.4%, which confirms the previous forecasts about the shift of consumer interest towards smart models with a large set of functions.

Commenting on the research, IDC analyst Jitesh Ubrani noted that the growing popularity of more “smart” devices shows the direction of the further development of the market of portable electronics.

“Additional sensors, years of data and improved algorithms allow such pillars of the industry as Fitbit and Apple to identify other health problems with wearable devices, while about a third of wearable devices that entered the market in a quarter had a cellular function communication, which contributed to the emergence of new usage scenarios, “- said the expert.

His colleague Ramon T. Llamas added that in addition to large brands, there are still many smaller vendors on the market that go their own way. Although the ability to monitor health status and physical activity during training remains the main advantage of many wearable devices, other functions also appear. For example, the ability to translate from foreign languages ​​and built-in virtual trainer in smart headphones (hearables), the function of tracking the location and cellular communication in children’s smart-clocks.

“Smart” watches and fitness bracelets occupied 95% of the quarterly volume of shipments of portable electronics. Another category that attracted the attention of analysts was “smart” clothing, where almost 60 percent growth was recorded. According to IDC, smart footwear with the ability to count steps has become the most widespread today, but gradually the range is expanding and shirts, shorts and other garments with fitness functions appear.

As for the arrangement of brands, Apple remains the largest manufacturer of portable electronics. Deliveries of its analytical devices were estimated at 4 million pieces, and share – 16.1%. In second place Xiaomi with 3.7 million devices and 14.8%. Also in the top 5 were Fitbit (2.2 million, 8.7%), Huawei (1.3 million, 5.2%) and Garmin (1.3 million, 5%).


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