Wearable shipments fell for the first time ever last quarter, and it’s all thanks to declining interest in an aging Apple Watch. Smartwatch vendors shipped just 3.5 million units during Q2 2016, down from 5.1 million units over the same quarter last year.
Alphabet-owned Google is planning to take another step toward becoming a genuine hardware company later this year with the release of its own smartwatch.
The search engine giant plans to take on Apple Watch directly, with not one, but two Android Wear smartwatches that will be deeply integrated with Google Assistant. Plus, it will pack some hardware features Apple Watch can’t match.
To convince customers, it’s even offering a new trade-in program that, depending on the model, could give you up to $250 for your Apple Watch. For those keeping score, that means you can get your hands on Redmond’s newly-launched wearable sequel without having to pay a single (extra) cent for it.
The Apple Watch is the hottest smartwatch on the market. And it looks like it is going to stay that way for a while.
A report by International Data Corporation says the Apple Watch will lead a rapidly growing wearables market through at least 2019 as a skeptical public gets won over by more sophisticated second- and third-generation devices.
IDC projects Apple to sell 13 million watches this year for a little more than 61 percent of the market share. The number of Apple Watches sold will reach 45.2 million by 2019, according to IDC’s report.