“Recent market data and industry developments provide some useful context and information, and are a positive sign for the prospects of the Apple Watch,” Robert Lehar writes for Seeking Alpha. “The latest Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry data for April shows that the value of Swiss watch exports decreased by ~10% over the first four months of the year, while March recorded particularly significant declines of -16% in value and -20% in units. The FSWI noted the unusual extent of the watch market weakness: ‘The scale of the downturn is also unusual, since we must go back to the crisis of 2009 to find rates of variation of this order.'”
“The latest IDC report does a good job of describing the current wearables market by dividing it into two distinct categories, basic wearables (health and fitness trackers, connected clothing, hearables) and smartwatches (watches with a digital display running third-party applications),” Lehar writes. “Each category has its clear leader. Fitbit dominates basic wearables (and overall wearables shipments) with its popular range of health and fitness trackers and watches, while Apple is the leader in the smartwatch segment… Apple’s approach to wearables is being increasingly validated by Fitbit.”
“Fitbit is embracing and validating Apple’s concept of wearables by making them smarter, more valuable, and more integrated into customers’ lives,” Lehar writes. “However, compared to Fitbit, Apple can already enjoy a large head start with its apps and mobile payments infrastructure. Furthermore, it has the benefit of a mass-market brand which is a better fit for a universal device like the smartwatch catering to various interests, activities, and needs… I think Apple is perfectly suited for the wearables market, having the right brand and product, and participating in the right market segment.”
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MacDailyNews Take: We’re seeing more and more Apple Watches out in public lately. It seems that $50 price reduction on Apple Watch Sport spurred some people to hop off the fence.
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