Global shipments for wearables grew 9.9% during the third quarter of 2021 (3Q21) reaching 138.4 million units, according to new data from the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Wearable Device Tracker. Apple captured the top position despite a 35.3% decline in Apple Watch shipments during the quarter.
Hearables from AirPods and Beats have helped the company cement its leadership in the wearables market although these products have also faced challenges in recent quarters as competition in the hearables segment remains strong, according to IDC.That said, “Apple’s position is still enviable as the company grabbed over 53% of the dollar value share in this market,” notes the research group.
Hearables led the growth as the category grew 26.5% compared to last year and accounted for 64.7% of wearable device shipments. Following hearables were wrist-worn wearables, the category most often associated with health and fitness tracking, which captured 34.7% of the market.
“Demand has been slowly shifting away from wristbands towards watches as consumers increasingly want a more capable device and as the gap in pricing narrows,” said Jitesh Ubrani, research manager for IDC Mobility and Consumer Device Trackers. “The number of watches sold for under $100 is now equal to wristbands, which have dominated this price band in the past. Growth amongst Indian and Chinese brands has been leading the low-end watch space while Apple, Huawei, and Samsung maintain a hold at the high-end.”