Wearable electronics was the strongest performing category within consumer electronics in Taiwan in both retail volume and current value growth terms in 2019. While it is a relatively new category to the country, its strong performance was supported by innovative launches and growing consumer appreciation for the features and benefits of smartwatches and activity watch (analogue) products.
While activity wearables (digital) continued to hold the largest share of wearable electronics in retail volume terms, smart wearables holds the highest share in current value terms, due to the latter’s significantly higher unit price, although the price is predicted to decline over the forecast period as an increasing number of competitors enter the landscape. Smart wearables are increasingly launching products that offer connectivity and support the installation of third party apps, while easier connection with electronic payment including i-Pass and EasyCard helps consolidate the category’s consumer base that regularly travels on public transport, particularly in Northern Taiwan.
Electronics and appliance specialist retailers remained the leading distribution channel for wearable electronics in retail volume terms in 2019. With wearable electronics regarded as fairly new technology in Taiwan, many consumers are still unfamiliar with how they function and therefore appreciate receiving advice from in-store sales assistants before making a purchase.
Xiaomi strengthened its leadership of wearable electronics in 2019 due to its full coverage across the category, offering activity as well as smart wearables, while remaining the only brand left in activity bands. The brand originally gained a consumer base through the latter through its lower-priced products, but went on to launch its first smart wearable, Amazfit in Taiwan in August 2018, which should continue to gain ground over the forecast period.
With wearable electronics offering such strong potential for higher growth in Taiwan over the forecast period, an increasing number of brands may be encouraged to enter, with smartphone brand Huawei launching digital activity wearables and smart wearables with Huawei Band 3 Pro and Huawei Watch GT. TicWatch initially used crowdfunding on Kickstarter to fund its second generation product TicWatch2.
Garmin strengthened its lead of smart wearables in 2019, gaining further retail volume share from Samsung and benefiting from the exit of Sony in 2018. Garmin only entered the category in 2017 but had gained leadership by 2018, capitalising on its strong brand reputation in in-car navigation.
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This industry report originates from Passport, our Consumer Electronics market research database.