Counterpoint: Wear OS share surges, Samsung smart hands express the highest quarterly shipments in Q3 2021

  • With the launch of the Galaxy Watch 4 series, Samsung achieved the highest quarterly shipments and narrowed the gap with Apple.
  • As Samsung started using Wear OS, the operating system’s share of the smartwatch market increased from 4% in the second quarter of 2021 to 17% in the third quarter of 2021.

The Global Smartwatch Model Tracker recently released by Counterpoint Research shows that global smartwatch shipments in the third quarter of this year increased by 16% compared with the same period last year, continuing the double-digit growth since the previous quarter.

Thanks to the launch of the Galaxy Watch 4 series, Samsung achieved the highest quarterly shipments, narrowed the gap with Apple, and regained second place from Huawei. Since the beginning of this smartwatch series, Samsung has expanded its application ecosystem by using Android-based Wear OS instead of Tizen. The brand has also broadened the range of choices for users by launching two models-basic and classic. The newly added body composition analysis function has also received a good response.

Apple still ranked first in the third quarter of 2021, but due to the delay of the release of Watch Series 7 to the fourth quarter, its share fell by 10% year-on-year. Amazfit ranks third because it is becoming more and more popular in Europe.

One of the highlights of this quarter is the rapid growth of Indian brands. The shipments of Noise and boAt, which ranked first and second in the Indian smartwatch market, respectively, more than doubled the previous quarter.

Top 5 global smartwatch OEM shipments in Q3 2021 and Q3 2020

Source: Global SmartwatchModel Tracker, third quarter of 2021

Counterpoint Research Senior Analyst Sujeong Lim said: “Samsung’s third-quarter performance was better than expected. Although Galaxy Watch 4 series shipments were much higher than expected, more than 60% of the total shipments were sold to North America and Europe. In order to further expand its market share, Samsung expects to launch affordable models within 2-3 years to target the fast-growing Asian market. Three of the smartwatches sold in the third quarter of 2021 One of the price is less than $100.”

In the third quarter of 2021, the market share of OS (operating system) has also undergone major changes. Since Samsung started using Wear OS on the Galaxy Watch 4, Google has achieved good growth in the wearable OS market. In terms of OS, the smart watch market is fragmented, because many OEMs still use proprietary operating systems or RTOS (real-time operating systems). But as third-party application support becomes more and more important to users, this situation is expected to change steadily.

Q3 2018 to Q3 2021, share of smartwatch shipments by operating system

Source: Global SmartwatchModel Tracker, third quarter of 2021

Ms. Lim added: “Google has maintained a dominant share in the smartphone market with the Android operating system, but has not achieved much in the wearable market so far. This is because Google controls the customized user interface of smart watch manufacturers, and because Its lower energy efficiency and slower response time were not chosen.

However, this year’s cooperation with Samsung provides a foothold for Google to expand its influence in the wearable operating system market, and it seems to be preparing to transform into a more open wearable platform from now on. “

Leave a Comment