Smartwatches Overtake Swiss Watches and Apple is Leading the Pack

Smartwatches Overtake Swiss Watches and Apple is Leading the Pack
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Smartwatch sales are growing around the world and they are growing very quickly. New data from market researcher Strategy Analytics claims that for the very first time, the Apple Watch led the way as smartwatches outsold Swiss watches in the fourth quarter of 2015 globally.

According to Cliff Raskind, Director at Strategy Analytics, the company estimates that “global smartwatch shipments reached 8.1 million units in Q4, 2015, rising a healthy 316 percent from 1.9 million in Q4 2014.” By contrast, their estimates show Swiss watch shipments at 7.9 million units in the same quarter – down 4.8 percent from 8.3 million shipments in the same quarter last year.


This marks the first time that smartwatches have outsold Swiss timepieces, long known as the industry standard for luxury watches. With a wide variety of different watches in a wide variety of price points, it appears as if smartwatches are appealing to a large portion of the public.

Within the smartwatch industry, the Apple Watch dominated sales. Although Apple has yet to release official sales data for the Apple Watch, Strategy Analytics estimates that Apple shipped 5.1 million of their Apple Watches last year – 63 percent of global smartwatch shipments in the fourth quarter of last year. Samsung trailed behind in a distant second, with 1.3 million shipments.

The increase in smartwatch sales and the decrease in Swiss watch sales may spell trouble for traditional watch companies. Although there will likely always be a market for luxury timepieces, it seems more and more likely that smartwatches will dominate watch sales in the coming years.


Many smartwatches are still in their first iterations – and as smartwatch technology advances, it will likely appeal to even more users. The Apple Watch 2, which will likely feature a slimmer design, FaceTime camera, and integrated Wi-Fi for more freedom from the iPhone, was originally slated for release at an Apple event this coming March.

However, it’s looking more likely that we won’t see a hardware upgrade until later this year. Regardless of the timing of the release, most researchers suggest that the second-generation model will sell even better than the first – it’s possible that this is the beginning of the end of the traditional watch industry as we know it.

Learn More: Owner of Fragile Apple Watch Comes Out Victorious After Challenging Apple in Court

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