Wearables' market growth slows, but they're getting smarter
There are more non-fitness-focused wrist devices and kids' watches than before. And Apple's still on top.
Lori GruninSenior Editor / Advice
I've been reviewing hardware and software, devising testing methodology and handed out buying advice for what seems like forever; I'm currently absorbed by computers and gaming hardware, but previously spent many years concentrating on cameras. I've also volunteered with a cat rescue for over 15 years doing adoptions, designing marketing materials, managing volunteers and, of course, photographing cats.
ExpertisePhotography, PCs and laptops, gaming and gaming accessories
The report, published Monday, is based on first-quarter year-over-year unit shipment growth -- that's the number of wearable devices available for sale in inventories, not the number that have sold to people. IDC says the top five manufacturers are, in order of unit market share:
at 16.1 percent, Xiaomi at 14.8 percent,
at 8.7 percent, Huawei at 5.2 percent and
at 5 percent.
Apple's growth has outpaced the rest of the wearables market, according to IDC. It will be interesting to hear what numbers the company shares about the
at today's WWDC 2018 keynote.
Wrist devices comprised 95 percent of the market, but smart clothing -- predominantly step-counting shoes -- rose by about 59 percent. According to IDC's wearables analyst there are more devices such as "'hearables' that feature coaching, audio modification and language translation, other wrist-worn devices focusing on personal safety, and connected watches for children."
Fitness-wearable manufacturer Fitbit also announced a milestone on Monday: It's shipped over a million
. Plus, after making female health tracking available on iOS and Windows (in addition to Android), it says that within the first two weeks, at least 1.8 million (presumably) women added at least one period to its calendar. Which doesn't surprise me at all.
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