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People are buying smartwatches more as global smartwatch shipments in the third quarter of this year increased 16% compared to the same period last year, according to the latest market report by Counterpoint Research.

While Apple retained the top spot, Samsung marked its highest ​​quarterly smartwatch shipments in Q3 2021, due to the popularity of the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 series. Samsung reclaimed the second place from Huawei as it expanded its app ecosystem by using Android-based Wear OS instead of its Tizen.

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Apart from Apple and Samsung, brands like Amazfit, Imoo, Huawei and Garmin took the third, fourth, fifth and sixth spots respectively.

Apple still held the No. 1 spot in Q3 2021 but its share fell 10% YoY as its Watch Series 7 launch was delayed to the fourth quarter. Amazfit ranked third due to its growing popularity in Europe, as per Counterpoint Research.

The report also claimed that in Q3 2021, there was also a significant change in OS market shares.

The report added that one of the highlights of this quarter was the rapid growth of Indian brands. Noise and boAt, which ranked first and second, respectively, in the Indian smartwatch market, shipped more than double the volume from the previous quarter.

“One-third of smartwatches sold in Q3 2021 were priced under $100,” said Sujeong Lim, Senior Analyst at Counterpoint Research.

The report also claimed that in Q3 2021, there was also a significant change in OS market shares. Google saw good growth in the wearable OS market. In terms of OS, the smartwatch market is fragmented as many OEMs still use proprietary OS or RTOS. But with third-party app support becoming important for users, the situation is expected to change steadily.

“Google has maintained a dominant share in the smartphone market with the Android OS, but so far has not achieved much in the wearable market. This is because Google controlled smartwatch OEMs from customising the UI, and it was not chosen by them due to its lower power efficiency and slow response time,” added Lim.

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