Fitness Wearables Are Mainstream, But Smartwatches Are Still For Tech Snobs

More than 2 million Australians over the age of 16 use a wearable device, a trend driven by the enthusiastic adoption of health and fitness apps — and health-orientated lifestyle choices.

A study by Telsyte predicts by 2020 around a third of the population could be wearing a smart wearable device on their wrists.

Image: Fitbit

In Australia, smart wearables continue to be dominated by lower cost smart wristbands rather than premium priced smartwatches. Around 76 per cent of the 944,000 units sold in the second half of 2015 were smart wristbands, such as those produced by Fitbit and Garmin.

Smartwatches, on the other hand, have been less successful in attracting the mainstream buyer.

The research shows that current smartwatch users are twice as likely to want to “stand out in a crowd”, three times more likely to “always keep up with the latest technology developments” and five times more likely to “feel pressure to buy the latest gadgets” than the average Australian consumer.

This leads researchers to believe the smartwatch market is still only drawing in early adopters of technology. The lines are blurring though, as more affordable smart wristbands are offering features that were previously only available on smartwatches.

The study showed that Apple retained market leadership of the Australian smartwatch market in 2015, followed by Samsung and LG.

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