Over the past year we have seen some great advancement in the wearable technology segment. Countless companies have released smartwatches and activity trackers, and some of the crowdfunded projects have been surprisingly successful. ABI Research’s new report shows that activity trackers were actually quite popular than smartwatches during the first quarter of this year, with the former even outselling the latter.
The report shows that activity trackers outsold smartwatches by 4 to 1, with over 2.35 million units being shipped during the first quarter of 2014 alone. It found Fitbit to be the market leader with a majority share trailed by similar devices from the likes of Garmin, Nike, Jawbone and others. However Fitbit might come under pressure from Samsung’s recently launched Gear Fit tracker.
As far as smartwatches are concerned Samsung was found to be the market leader during the first quarter with Sony following close behind in second and Pebble coming in third. Though another recent report claimed that the majority of the U.S. smartwatch market is catered to by both Samsung and Pebble.
Customers might prefer activity trackers more because they don’t necessarily replicate the features that their smartphones already offer. Their sole job is to monitor health and fitness related data. Some of the upcoming smartwatches are expected to focus greatly on activity tracking because without these features its merely a device for seeing notifications on your wrist.
According to ABI Research activity monitor manufacturers are likely going to ship 10 million units throughout this year as opposed to 7 million smartwatches. I wonder if that figure will change once Apple comes out with its rumored fitness-focused iWatch this fall.