Apple Watch accounts for 52% of 2015 smartwatch sales

Apple WatchEarly signs already suggested that the Apple Watch dominated smartwatch sales in 2015. A new report from Juniper Research found that it accounted for 52% of the market last year despite only launching in April. Of the 17.1 million smartwatches sold over the course of the year, Apple sold 8.89 million of them.

Despite the launch of high profile devices such as the second generation Moto 360 and the Huawei Watch, Google’s Android Wear was handily beaten. It could do no better than just under 10% of the market.

The news was even worse for Samsung. Without providing specific numbers, Juniper found that Samsung failed to achieve “strong sales volumes” for the well received Tizen-powered Gear S2 smartwatch. With no new smartwatches before the Gear S2 late in the year, Samsung saw its overall market share plunge in 2015 (confirming earlier findings).

Simpler and cheaper smartwatches from a range of manufacturers including Martian (and presumably Pebble which was not mentioned) accounted for the remainder of smartwatch sales.

According to Juniper analyst James Moar, “The smartwatch is now a category waiting for a market. Newer devices have offered more polished looks and subtly different functions, but no large changes in device capabilities or usage. With smartwatch functions established, it is now up to consumers to decide if they want them, rather than technology companies providing more reasons.”

The report adds that the lines between smartwatches and fitness trackers will blur further in 2016. This could be additional pressure on smartwatches as cheaper fitness trackers adopt a greater range of features. In turn, smartwatches may have to increase focus on fitness (like the Moto 360 Sport or the new Garmin fenix 3 multisport watches) in a bid to stay relevant.

Juniper used a “combination of publicly available data from vendors, import-export records, retailers stock and sales data” for its report.