Apple dominated the smart watch market in 2015, accounting for over 12 million units and two-thirds of all shipments according to Canalys estimates.
Samsung returned to second place in the fourth quarater, as the improved design of the Gear S2 saw a much better consumer reception than previous wearable efforts by the company, says the research group. Pebble came third and Huawei came fourth, establishing itself as the leading Android Wear vendor.
Basic bands exceeded 37 million shipments for the year. Fitbit set a quarterly shipments record as it led the category. Xiaomi held second place, shipping 12 million Mi Bands during 2015.
“Cashing in on holiday sales, Apple managed to rack up over five million shipments in the fourth quarter,” according to Canalys analyst Jason Low.
Strong holiday shipments for Fitbit, Apple and Garmin drove growth of over 60% sequentially for all wearable bands. Across the entire wearable bands segment, Fitbit led all vendors in quarter four followed by Apple and Xiaomi.
“Software increasingly belongs on the wrist, and this is the direction the market is going,” said Canalys analyst Daniel Matte. “As the next step along this path, the Fitbit Blaze is the right product for the company to develop. It is competitively priced and is still being squarely focused on fitness.”