The Apple Watch has dominated the global smartwatch market in 2020

watchOS 7 Shortcuts Complications
watchOS 7 Shortcuts Complications (Image credit: Joseph Keller / iMore)

What you need to know

  • Apple has captured over half of the global smartwatch market in H1 2020.
  • WearOS still only holds 10% of the market.
  • 42 million smartwatches were sold in the first half of the year.

The Apple Watch is still the smartwatch to beat by a mile in 2020.

Reported by analytics firm Counterpoint, Apple captured half of the global smartwatch market in the first half of 2020. Senior Analyst Sujeong Lim remarked that strong demand for the new Apple Watch Series 5 grew Apple's overall shipments by twenty-two percent.

"Apple continued to dominate the smartwatch market both in volume and value. Apple captured a record half of the market in terms of revenue due to strong demand for the Apple Watch S5 models. In terms of shipment volumes, Apple Watch grew 22% globally with Europe and North America being the fastest growing markets in the first half of 2020."

Lim went on to say that Apple wasn't the only growth that the market experienced in the first half of 2020, however. The market as a whole has seen major growth across India, Europe, and the United States.

"The smartwatch space remains a popular consumer device segment, compared to the downturn seen in smartphone demand and many other segments in the first six months of 2020 due to the devastation caused by COVID-19. Close to 42 million smartwatches were shipped in the first half of 2020 as wearables continue to see greater demand with consumers becoming more health conscious. India (+57% YoY), Europe (+9% YoY) and the US (+5% YoY), the most affected regions of COVID-19, saw a healthy growth in smartwatch shipments which offset the decline in other markets."

Research Director Jeff Fieldhack says that the market should expect to continue to see growth as heart rate monitoring, fall detection, and blood oxygen monitoring continue to be adopted into future smartwatches. That, paired with a more health-conscious population, should continue to propel the market forward.

"Google WearOS continues to account for 10% of the total smartwatch market, behind Apple WatchOS. Huawei's Lite OS and Amazfit's Amazfit OS are growing fast. Further, the cellular-capable smartwatch is becoming more popular and accounts for more than one in four smartwatches shipped, benefitting the likes of Qualcomm. Heart rate monitoring now is featured in almost 60% of the smartwatches. Fall detection and SPO2 are the features that should see mass-adoption in future models. Square form-factor accounts for almost two-thirds of the smartwatches globally as the form factor is helping to better fit additional sensors and needed battery footprint. The massive leaps in battery life and processing power are helping to better track overall health as continual heartrate, sleep and other monitoring can be done instead of the device sitting on a charger. The leaps in solar charging technology will also help OEMs concentrate on better monitoring. We expect to continue to see a focus on fitness and wellness applications."

If you've been wanting to check out the upcoming features of Apple Watch, Apple released the second public beta of watchOS 7 today.

Joe Wituschek

Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.