Smartwatch sales rise in Q2

Smartwatch sales rise in Q2

India’s smartwatch market, which has been on a steady growth trajectory, saw shipments rise by over 32% sequentially in the September quarter. Growth in the sector was driven by homegrown brands focusing on offline retail, which saw a 58% rise in overall sales in this segment—as per a report published Wednesday by market researcher, International Data Corporation (IDC) India.

A total of 16.9 million smartwatches were shipped in the September quarter, IDC data showed. The September quarter is typically the strongest in terms of sales and shipments, driven by festive season sales in India. This is a 32% sequential and 41% year-on-year rise in smartwatch shipments, which account for one-third of all wearable devices like fitness bands, smartwatches and true wireless earbuds.

A key driver of this rise has been via offline retail channels, which brands began focusing on over the past few quarters. IDC’s report said offline retail for smartwatches accounted for 31.5% of all sales—up from 26.1% in the June quarter. Pushing the offline market is key for the sector, which has been struggling with wafer-thin margins for most devices amid a war to capture greater market share among homegrown brands.

Notably, the top five smartwatch brands in India are domestic ones.

Vikas Sharma, senior market analyst for wearable devices at IDC India, said brands are increasingly focusing on “high-decibel marketing campaigns and promotions” to drive December quarter shipments. This will result in “strong double-digit annual growth in CY23.”

The offline growth strategy is a common one among the top brands, which include Noise and Boat. On 18 August, Gaurav Khatri, CEO of Noise, told Mint that the company is already seeing 15% of its sales from offline channels. A top executive at a fellow Indian brand reported similar offline sales, but added offline sales are likely to increase sharply in the next three quarters.

This growth of smartwatches was also driven by a better than expected festive period, which saw the value of smartphone sales increase. Kailash Lakhyani, founder and chairman of All India Mobile Retailers Association (Aimra), said a large part of the rise in sales were driven by availability of easy affordability plans at brick-and-mortar retailers.

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Updated: 15 Nov 2023, 11:12 PM IST

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Author: Shirley