An Overview of the Top 5 Wearables Companies

Wearable technology, commonly known as wearables, are sophisticated gadgets or devices embedded on ‘wearable’ things such as spectacles, head or wrist band, ear plugs, shoes or accessories. The rising connection between wearables and healthcare is helping spur the demand for these products in addition to other factors such as convenience, ease and engagement.

During 2021, shipments of wearables for the full year totaled 533.6 million units, an increase of 20% over 2020, according to IDC. The shipment of wearable devices hovered around 80-85 million units back in 2015. The global wearable technology market size is projected to grow from $116.2 billion in 2021 to $265.4 billion by 2026 at a CAGR of 18% during the period.

Here’s an overview of the top five wearable technology companies based on the market share.

1. Apple, Inc. (AAPL) maintained its leadership dominating 30.3% market share during the year 2021, although the share was down as compared to 34.1% in 2020. In terms of shipment, Apple witnessed a rise of 6.8% in its shipments to touch 161.8 million during the year. Apple reports wearables, home and accessories together during its earnings. During FY 2021 (August 2020 – September 2021), the revenue from this combined segment stood at $38.37 billion, more than double the numbers of $17.38 billion reported in FY 2018. If we put the January to December figures together, then the number works out to be $40.1 billion.

Apple has received a great response from customers for its Apple Watch Series, which bring cutting-edge health and fitness tracking features. During the recent Q2 FY 2022 earnings call, Apple’s Chief Financial Officer Luca Maestri said, “Apple Watch continues to extend its reach with over two-thirds of customers purchasing an Apple Watch during the quarter being new to the product.” In addition to its watch, AirPods have contributed to the company’s growth as well.

2. Xiaomi Corporation (XIACY) is a China-domiciled consumer electronics and smart manufacturing company with smartphones and smart hardware connected by an IoT platform at its core. Xiaomi holds the second highest market share in the wearable space. The company shipped 54.4 million wearables during 2021, around 7.1% more than the number 50.4 million in 2020. Xiaomi products are present in more than 100 countries and regions around the world. The company witnessed a decline in wristbands but was able to compensate the slowdown by focusing on watches and hearables. In March 2022, Xiaomi unveiled the Xiaomi Watch S1 Series and Xiaomi Buds 3T Pro for global markets.

“We are seeing more and more consumers viewing wearables as everyday essentials for a variety of use cases, such as health and wellness, convenience and connection, or even personal style,” said Steven Shi, AIoT Deputy Manager of Xiaomi International. “As a leading wearables brand, Xiaomi will focus on delivering more high-end wearable products in 2022.”

3. Samsung Electronics (SSNLF), the South Korean conglomerate, is behind Xiaomi with a 9% market share. Samsung witnessed a 20% year-over-year growth registering 48.1 million shipments in 2021 as compared to 40.1 million in 2020. Samsung has recently rolled out the Wear OS Powered smartwatch, Galaxy Watch 4 series. As per Samsung, “As a leader in the wearables market, we understand the importance of unifying its wearables user experience with the wider Android community. The creation of Wear OS allowed Android developers to easily port code from their smartphone applications to create Wear OS- apps.”

Samsung and Google are also working together to fulfill this need with a new solution, Health Connect. “With the new Health Connect API, users will have a comprehensive set of controls to manage their health and fitness data across apps,” wrote TaeJong Jay Yang, EVP and Head of Health R&D Team at Mobile eXperience Business, Samsung Electronics. According to Samsung, wearable market is likely to see a double-digit growth in 2022. 

4. Huawei ranks fourth with an 8% market share. The company shipped 42.7 million wearables in 2021 as compared to 34 million in 2020, a rise of 25.6% year-over-year. According to the company’s 2021 annual report, Huawei health and fitness products have served more than 320 million users worldwide. Additionally, its Health app provides users with comprehensive data, science-based exercise advice and targeted health management services, and it has attracted 83 million monthly active users worldwide.

According to Huawei, by computing and modeling public health and medical data, it be possible to identify potential health problems by 2030, thereby shifting focus from treatment to prevention. Huawei is integrating all its products with HarmonyOS to enhance the seamless AI Life experience across devices.

5. Imagine Marketing Private Limited’s became the first Indian company to the make it to the list of top wearables. The company’s prominent wearables brand boAt witnessed a whopping 163.4% growth taking its shipments from 10.2 million in 2020 to 26.8 million in 2021. The market share of the company more than doubled from 2.3% in 2020 to 5% in 2021. The brand has achieved rapid revenue growth of more than 100% over the past several years. Initially focusing on True Wireless Stereo (TWS), the company has now expanded into newer categories like smart watches in FY 2021.

The company raised funding from Qualcomm Ventures, the investment arm of Qualcomm Incorporated, in early 2021. In January 2022, Imagine Marketing signed a definitive agreement to acquire Singapore-based KaHa Pte Ltd., an end-to-end smart IoT product development company. In India, boAt captures 1/3rd of the market share.

Together, these five companies dominated 62.5% of the wearables market share.

Disclaimer: The author has no position in any stocks mentioned. Investors should consider the above information not as a de facto recommendation, but as an idea for further consideration. The report has been carefully prepared, and any exclusions or errors in it are totally unintentional. The rankings and data are based on IDC report dated March 2022. Other information is based on company websites, earnings, and annual report.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


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