Earwear and Watches Leads to a Record Quarter for Wearables in India with 11.8 million units shipped in 3Q20, Says IDC India


The India wearables market posted a record quarter with 11.8 million units shipped in 3Q20 (July-September 2020) at an impressive 165.1% year-over-year (YoY) growth,  marking the highest quarter shipments to date, according to the recent data from the International Data Corporation’s (IDCWorldwide Quarterly Wearable Device Tracker . Strong demand for earwear devices and watches propelled this growth as both recorded their biggest quarter of shipments in India.

In the last few quarters, wearable devices have become more affordable with the average selling price of watches coming down to $111 in 3Q20 compared to $175 in 3Q19. This is enticing consumers to upgrade from wristbands to watches. Similarly, the average price of true wireless stereo (TWS) has dropped by 48.6% YoY in 3Q20 to $57. TWS now contributes to 39.7% of the overall earwear category, as close to 4 million TWS devices were shipped during the quarter, recording a four-digit annual growth of 1156.3% in 3Q20.

“The pandemic has created a new norm of learning and working from home. Virtual meetings, online classes, and increased time spent on entertainment have led to an intensified demand for earwear devices,” says Anisha Dumbre, Market Analyst, Client Devices, IDC India. “Vendors are capitalizing on this rising trend, addressing the growing consumer demand and launching affordable devices, making the overall earwear category more accessible”, adds Dumbre. 
Product Category Highlights


Wristbands grew 83.3% quarter-over-quarter (QoQ) in 3Q20 after seeing a sequential decline in the first half of the year. However, it declined by 20.3% YoY as users started upgrading to watches. Xiaomi maintained its lead, accounting for more than half of the category shipments with a 52.4% share in the quarter. Realme stood second with a 14.6% share in the category.

Watches grew by 119.9% YoY in 3Q20 with 778 thousand units shipped in the country, making it the biggest quarter since the launch of the category in India. Homegrown Indian lifestyle technology brand, Noise led the segment with a 28.5% category share in 3Q20. Realme replaced Huami for the second position with a 24.2% share of the category. 

Increased demand for wireless devices supported the earwear category to hit its all-time high shipments in the country, witnessing a 260.5% YoY growth in 3Q20. BoAt with multiple launches during the quarter, led the category with a 32.4% share, followed by Samsung that includes devices from Samsung, Infinity, Harman Kardon, and JBL with a 15.0% share. BoAt also led the overall TWS category with a 26.1% share, followed by Realme who expanded the truly wireless portfolio and secured the second position with a 15.5% market share in the TWS category.

Summarising the shift in wristwear devices from the band to watches, Jaipal Singh , Associate Research Manager, Client Devices, IDC India commented, “The pandemic has reinforced the importance of fitness in our life. The motivation of staying fit and leading a healthy lifestyle is now forcing users to upgrade to more sophisticated wearable devices with greater expectations around improved health tracking.” He further adds, “To support this shift, the watch category is also witnessing an adjustment in average selling price and expected to accelerate the much-needed migration to watches from wrist band.”

Note –  

  • For an ear-worn device to be considered a wearable by IDC’s definition, it must offer functionality beyond audio, like a smart assistant, health and fitness tracking, audio experience enhancement, or language translation.
  • Wearable devices that are in the form of a watch and capable of processing the data digitally are considered in the watch category and it excludes the traditional analog and digital watches.

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