Massive surge in smartwatch demand

Gartner predicts that worldwide end-user spending on wearable devices will total $52 billion in 2020 – an increase of 27% on the expected $41-billion spend in 2019.

Gartner said that many new users are entering the wearables market, while the devices are also seeing improved sensor accuracy, advances in miniaturisation, and better user data protection.

Smartwatches and smart clothing spending will see the biggest increase, said Gartner, with spend on these product types increasing by 34% and 52% respectively.

“More users coming into the smartwatch segment are replacing wristbands with smartwatches,” said Ranjit Atwal, senior research director at Gartner.

“While brand leaders, Apple Watch and Samsung Galaxy Watch command premium pricing in the smartwatch segment, lower-priced players such as Xiaomi and Huawei will counterbalance high-priced smartwatches with lower cost smartwatches.”

Atwal said that Gartner expects the average selling prices of smartwatches to decline 4.5% between 2020 and 2021.

Smartwatches and ear-worn devices are expected to be the most popular wearable devices in 2020, with predicted shipment totals of 86 million and 70 million units respectively.

Gartner added that the ear-worn wearable market remains competitive due to products from various tech companies, including Apple, Samsung, Xiaomi, and Amazon.

Data from Gartner highlighting worldwide wearable device spend can be viewed below.

Worldwide wearable device spend (Millions of Dollars)
Device type 2018 2019 2020 2021
Smartwatch 12,412 17,047 22,803 27,388
Head-mounted display 5,354 7,183 10,609 15,501
Ear-worn 6,780 7,885 8,716 9,927
Sports watch 3,647 4,121 4,555 4,912
Wristband 3,405 3,194 3,115 3,055
Smart clothing 848 1,151 1,746 2,202
Total 32,446 40,581 51,545 62,985

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Massive surge in smartwatch demand