Apple is dominating the smartwatch market with its Apple Watch leading smartwatch sales, new data from Kantar Worldpanel reveals.
The Apple Watch seized 33.5 percent of the U.S. smartwatch market in the three months ended in July, according to Kantar. In Europe, the Apple Watch market share was 31.8 percent during the same period in the four biggest European markets: France, Germany, Italy and Great Britain.
The market research firm notes that in the three-month period, 47 percent of all wearable sales in the United States were smartwatches.
"Apple continues to dominate this segment with a 33.5 percent share, although that lead shrank slightly in the last three months as the market awaited the Apple Watch Series 2 announcement," says Lauren Guenveur, Kantar Worldpanel ComTech's Consumer Research Director. "The EU4 countries show a similar trend, with 38.6 percent of all sales coming in the smartwatch category, with Apple leading at 31.8 percent."
With the release of the upgraded Apple Watch Series 2, Apple's smartwatch market share is expected to further increase, especially since the company enjoys a loyal user base.
Moreover, Kantar points out that one of its surveys found that 9.3 percent of U.S. people who don't own a wearable yet plan to purchase one within the next year. In Great Britain, the percentage for non-owners who plan to buy a wearable is slightly higher at 11.3 percent.
The smartwatch market may not be growing at the rapid pace we once expected, but it's still expanding at a moderate pace worldwide. Apple did not provide any figures for its smartwatch sales, but has repeatedly stated that it still sees high demand for its original Apple Watch from last year.
The company also revealed its second-generation Apple Watch earlier this month, adding a number of notable improvements and features to enhance the wearable experience. The new Apple Watch Series 2 is now swim-proof and more suitable for outdoorsy individuals and fitness enthusiasts.
While the Apple Watch 2 looks quite similar to the original Apple Watch, it boasts a more powerful processor and adds GPS, in addition to the waterproofing its predecessor lacked.
Kantar points out that the second-generation smartwatch from Apple may finally address some shortcomings and drawbacks of the first generation. Adding more features that consumers are interested in should further boost its appeal and drive Apple's smartwatch market share.
"September 7th's unveiling of the Apple Watch Series 2 showed Apple addressing the key considerations cited by those planning to buy, including GPS, one of the most-desired functionalities, and waterproofing, the most-desired feature," adds Guenveur.
At the same time, with the release of the new model, Apple also discounted the original Apple Watch to $269. This means that the company now addresses a wider pool of potential buyers. Those looking for a higher-end device packed with more features and functionality can go for the Apple Watch 2, while those looking for a popular and reliable wearable can purchase the more accessible Apple Watch from last year.
To get a better idea of what each of the two Apple smartwatches has to offer, check out our comparison piece for the Apple Watch vs. Apple Watch 2.