Smartwatch vendors are coming closer to hitting the optimum price point in terms of sparking demand, according to new research from Canalys.
Vincent Thielk, a research analyst at the firm, said that the vendors are getting close to the “bullseye” when it comes to setting prices.
The research showed that vendors were primarily focusing on the $200 to $299 price segment, with 32% of products listed at those prices, compared to 28% at the higher $300 to $399 price segment.
Thielk said: “Smartwatch vendors are increasingly getting nearer the bullseye – hitting the right price point in a way that spurs massive demand.”
He went on to highlight the success that Samsung has experienced with regard to its new Galaxy Watch branding, praising the company’s “robust performance.”
He said: “Packing features into a compact form factor that has an appealing design is challenging but rewarding. Samsung most recently showcased these capabilities with its latest Watch Active 2 series, though other vendors are close behind.”
However he pointed out that despite the demands for smartwatches with strong health and other intelligent features, Fitbit’s Versa Lite had proven unsuccessful.
Thielke added: “Fitbits misstep with the Versa Litre shows that consumers will shun overly pared-down smartwatches if they are not appropriately targeted, and especially when it’s obvious they are losing functionality.”
According to Jason Low, a senior analyst at the firm, mobile connectivity and actionable health insights are the way forward when it comes to ensuring additional growth.
Low said: “Vendors are racing to announce LTE connectivity for their smartwatches, and it is becoming increasingly difficult to challenge Apple, which has been laying robust groundwork for cellular-connected devices.”
He continued: “Apple is poised to reinforce its leading position by including aggregated health data, which can reveal new trends and insights, both for consumers and the broader healthcare ecosystem.”
Canalys’ research showed that the overall value of North America’s wearable band market reached $2 billion dollars during 2019’s second quarter, with shipments up 38% at 7.7 million units.
This means that North America remains the world’s most valuable wearable band market, although Greater China eclipses it in terms of unit sales.
Q2 2019 saw more than 60% of Apple’s 4.7 million global watch sales into North America, with Fitbit coming behind the tech giant as the region’s second biggest player.
Fitbit saw an 18% increase in shipments as a result of pushing its more basic bands into the channel, although it failed to ship as many smartwatches as in Q2 last year.