Apple shipped 2.8 million Watches in Q3, thanks to the release of the new Series 1 and Series 2 models late in the quarter. Despite reports to the contrary, Canalys research shows that shipments compared favorably to those in Q3 2015, the first full quarter after the original Apple Watch’s launch in April 2015. Total smart watch shipments exceeded 6.1 million for the quarter, an annual increase of 60%.
‘While the new models are selling well, there are still unsold first-generation Apple Watches in the channel,’ said Canalys Analyst Daniel Matte. ‘Q4 performance will be key to better assessing the long-term prospects of the improved Watch models. Apple needs to make a strong marketing push during the holiday shopping season, especially to highlight new and compelling apps for its platform. Meanwhile, its renewed focus on fitness functionality puts it in more direct competition with Fitbit. The inclusion of GPS by Apple and many other vendors now poses a big threat to traditional GPS watches and fitness trackers.’
Wearable band shipment data is taken from Canalys’ Wearable and Virtual Reality Analysis service, which provides quarterly market tracking, including country-level estimates. Canalys defines smart watches as multi-purpose devices that serve as accessories to smart devices, are designed to be worn on the body and not carried, run an operating system and are capable of running third-party computing applications. Basic bands are devices serving a specific set of purposes that act as accessories to smart devices, are designed to be worn on the body and not carried and cannot run third-party computing applications. Bands are wearables designed to be wrapped around the body, including watches, and do not include activity trackers in the form of clips.
[Source: Canalys press release]