Wearable Devices Market Share

Updated: 18 Dec 2020

Shipments of Wearable Devices Leap to 125 Million Units, Up 35.1% in the Third Quarter, According to IDC

FRAMINGHAM, Mass., December 2, 2020 – The global wearables market grew 35.1% year over year during the third quarter of 2020 (3Q20) with total shipments reaching 125 million units according to new data from the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Wearable Device Tracker. The surge was driven by seasonality, new product launches, and the global pandemic. New products from the likes of Apple, Samsung, and others helped renew interest in popular categories such as smartwatches and hearables. Meanwhile, consumer spend on electronics also increased during recent months as spending on travel, dining out, and other leisure activities decreased. This shift in spending was another catalyst for the wearables market.

"Many countries began easing restrictions and opening up their economies during the third quarter, which helped bolster outdoor activity as well as demand for wearables," said Jitesh Ubrani, research manager for IDC Mobile Device Trackers. "Meanwhile, a broader range of price points from numerous vendors meant that there was something for everyone."

"The double-digit growth not only indicates strong demand, but also suggests that many people got a wearable device for the first time in both emerging and developed markets," said Ramon T. Llamas, research director, Mobile Devices and AR/VR. "Consider what this means: a larger installed base of wearable device users going forward and a larger opportunity for device replacements in the years to come. And, as some wearers own multiple devices – like earwear and wristwear – the wearables market will enjoy sustained demand."

"Around the world, many organizations have also started to use wearables to help the fight against COVID-19," said Jitesh Ubrani, research manager for IDC Mobile Device Trackers. "Not only are wearables being used to track symptoms, but also to warn wearers when social distance isn't being matained."

Worldwide Wearables Market by Product Type, 2020Q3

Quarter 2019Q3 2019Q4 2020Q1 2020Q2 2020Q3
Earwear 47,215,620 67,126,271 44,618,475 52,316,199 69,753,441
Watch 24,162,064 30,815,521 17,134,488 19,326,800 32,904,960
Wrist band 20,044,994 21,477,450 15,339,666 14,602,298 21,930,862
Others 1,101,843 1,139,040 563,117 429,329 439,405

Product Highlights

Hearables accounted for 55.8% of all wearables shipped during the quarter as total shipments grew 47.7% during the same period. The demand for hearables during the pandemic cannot be understated as many consumers sought devices that would allow them to maintain some privacy while also allowing them to remotely connect with others.

Watches grew 36.2% as many vendors expanded their product lineups to include multiple price points. Apple was clearly in the lead and other companies such as Huawei, Samsung, and Garmin also experienced growth. Premium features such as the presence of an ECG sensor have also seen a notable rise in this category.

Wrist Band growth continued as the category grew 9.4% during the quarter. Large vendors such as Xiaomi and Huawei continue to push low cost products in Asia but have also recently began to target international markets such as Central & Eastern Europe as well as Middle East & Africa.

Other types of wearables including connected clothing, modular clip-on style devices declined 60.1% during the quarter. These form factors have struggled with main-stream appeal and are often superfluous in the presence of more popular devices such as watches or wrist bands.

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