Apple is likely to remain the biggest player in the smartwatch category, a new report from analysts at IDC suggests.
The firm suggests that the overall wearables category is set to reach 125.3 million units this year, of which smartwatches represent around half. By 2022, IDC thinks that 189.9 million wearables will be sold. That’s growth that surpasses either the smartphone or the PC.
While Apple Watch is likely to stay in the lead when it comes to smartwatches, IDC expects it to lose some ground over time. If you remember, this is similar to what happened with Android and its chipping away at market share previously held by iOS. IDC expects watchOS’s market share to decline from 44.4 percent this year to 35.8 percent in 2022.
In terms of innovation, IDC thinks that Apple Watch is more or less on the right track. The report notes that:
“Smartwatch operating systems will emphasize connection, not only between users but between wearers and other smart devices and systems … expect further developments focusing on health, with the smartwatch playing a critical role in tracking your health goals and detecting potential ailments.”
Other wearable devices
Perhaps the most interesting part of the report, however, is a glimpse at the multiple directions that the wearables industry is likely to expand in. Smart clothing and earwear are both categories IDC thinks will double in popularity over the next five years, although they will still remain bit players in the overall wearables market.
Interestingly, the Apple Watch may not be the only wearable device Apple has by 2022. Previous reports have suggested that Apple is currently working on an AR headset, which could be out before five years has passed.
What are your predictions for the wearables market in the next few years? Let us know in the comments below.