- CCS Insight’s latest smartwatch user survey confirms health tracking is the most attractive purchase reason, both for first-time buyers and those who are upgrading.
- Findings show smartwatch owners are extremely engaged with their devices; 96% use them regularly and demonstrate high usership of multiple features.
- Market challenges are delaying purchases for those who are upgrading their existing smartwatch and those who are buying one for the first time, reflecting CCS Insight’s latest market forecasts.
London, 29 November 2022: After the boom years the smartwatch market experienced in the Covid-19 pandemic, CCS Insight’s most recent forecast has shown it’s now entering a period of significant slowdown. The company expects the total value of the smartwatch market to fall to $24.8 billion in 2023, with a total of 131 million units shipped.
These findings are reflected in the technology analysis firm’s latest survey of smartwatch users. This research examines people’s attitudes toward, use of, and intention to buy smartwatches. The survey found that a declining proportion of the market is intending to buy a smartwatch over the next 12 months, for both existing owners and those yet to purchase.
“The smartwatch market enjoyed a massive boost throughout the pandemic as people searched for ways to track their health and fitness at home, but growth has slowed in 2022 as consumers begin to take stock of spending priorities in the face of a recession”, comments Kane McKenna, Wearables Analyst at CCS Insight.
The research found that a much lower proportion of people purchased their current device in the past year than in previous years, with only 32% of owners having bought their smartwatch in the past 12 months — as opposed to 66% in 2021’s survey. It also found that a lower proportion of people are intending to make a replacement purchase in the next 12 months than in previous years. Some of this fall is a result of the market maturing and a natural slowdown in growth. However, CCS Insight believes that this trend has accelerated because of current global macroeconomic pressures.
The survey data indicates that health tracking continues to be the main feature that entices new users to the market, with increased focus on this area by device-makers such as Apple, Fitbit, Garmin and Samsung in recent years. Although health tracking is extremely popular, many owners also buy devices for sports tracking, as well as for connectivity features such as sending and receiving messages. Despite difficult market conditions, the research shows that smartwatches maintain their attractiveness for several reasons — even if upgrade cycles are lengthening.
CCS Insight’s research also revealed that more than half of people who don’t own a smartwatch have considered buying one, and the same proportion expressed their intention to buy in the future. However, most are being held back by the financial ramifications of buying a smartwatch. Cost is the most cited reason for people who considered buying a device but decided against it, and lower prices are the primary change that could trigger those who don’t own a smartwatch to buy in the future.
“Despite the choppy economic waters, interest and intention to buy smartwatches remains high. However, our research shows that device prices may have to fall to convince many to buy”, states McKenna.
Smartwatches aimed at children and senior users also show potential. Although the amount of money the average person would be willing to spend on these products varies greatly, most respondents said that they would consider buying one to safeguard a loved one.
More details of CCS Insight’s extensive wearables research service can be found at: https://www.ccsinsight.com/research-areas/wearables/
Notes to editors
CCS Insight is a leading provider of research about the wearables market. This survey is part of a broader suite of research into wearables, including market forecasts, an extensive database of devices in this area, regular reports and updates on the latest announcements, events and news.
About CCS Insight
CCS Insight is a global analyst company focussing on current and future trends in technology. It provides comprehensive services that are tailored to meet the needs of individual clients, helping them make sense of the connected world. Follow @CCSInsight on Twitter or learn more at www.ccsinsight.com.
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