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Analyst firm predicts smartwatch segment is growing – brave chaps

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So apparently despite most people not knowing anyone who owns a smartwatch the segment is on the up according to research from Canalys.

The assumption the smartphone industry is quickly tanking is not only an observation on the morning commute, but also one which is backed up by numerous analysts and research agencies. Volume does not make the claim correct, but it makes it more likely. Swimming so strongly against the tide make the statement by Canalys a bit more remarkable; the team really has puts itself out there and is backing Apple strongly.

“While the new models are selling well, there are still unsold first-generation Apple Watches in the channel,’ said Canalys Analyst Daniel Matte. “Q4 performance will be key to better assessing the long-term prospects of the improved Watch models. Apple needs to make a strong marketing push during the holiday shopping season, especially to highlight new and compelling apps for its platform.

“Meanwhile, its renewed focus on fitness functionality puts it in more direct competition with Fitbit. The inclusion of GPS by Apple and many other vendors now poses a big threat to traditional GPS watches and fitness trackers.”

Canalys believe Apple shipped 2.8 million Watches in Q3, which is a considerably different number from IDC’s research which we covered last month. IDC estimate Apple sold only 1.1 million smartwatches over the quarter, and the segment on the whole shrunk from 5.6 million to 2.7 million. The two figures are so wildly apart you would be forgiven if you came to conclusion that someone is just making it up.

Apple does not give the figures of how well certain product lines perform, and the smartwatches are one of those products. The financial results have a segment called ‘Other Products’ which includes sales of Apple TV, Apple Watch, Beats products, iPod and Apple-branded and third-party accessories, but no break downs. Year-on-year this segment was down 22% for the last quarter to $2.3 billion.

Canalys is pretty adamant Apple and the smartwatch segment on the whole are growing quickly, 60% year-on-year, though if Apple’s financials are anything to go by, the might be a bit off the mark. Telecoms.com is not going to take sides, but IDC is pretty accurate most of the time.

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