Apple Watch is one of Apple’s bestselling products, and since its launch, the wearable has upended the market. Strategy Analytics, a research and consulting company, has released new sales estimates that suggest Apple sold more watches last year than all of the Switch watch brands combined. According to the estimates, 30.7 million Apple Watches were shipped in 2019, a 36 percent jump compared to the previous year. On the other hand, the Swiss watch makers shipped around 21.1 million units in 2019, which is 13 percent less than their previous year sales.
Data for the sales numbers given in the Strategy Analytics report was taken from vendors and sales partners as Apple doesn’t release Apple Watch unit sales figures in quarterly earnings.
Strategy Analytics’ executive director, Neil Mawston, writes, “Analogue wristwatches remain popular among older consumers, but younger buyers are tipping toward smartwatches and computerised wristwear.” Steven Waltzer, another analyst from the team, feels that the Apple Watch “is delivering a better product through deeper retail channels.” He believes traditional Swiss watch makers including Swatch, TAG Heuer, and Tissot need to work fast if they want to enter the smartwatch game. This is majorly due to the fact that the youth prefers digital wrist wear over analogue.
This isn’t even the first time Apple has overtaken the Swiss watch brands. Back in Q4 2017, the quarterly sales numbers showed that the tech giant trumped the Swiss watch industry but not for the entire year. This, however, is the first time Apple has maintained the lead for the full year. Though, when it comes to just smartwatch sales, the American technology company has been the market leader for several years.
According to Q1 2020 earnings released by Apple, the company’s Wearables, Home, and Accessories wing brought in $10 billion which even surpassed the Mac earnings, coming in at $7.2 billion. Clearly, the Apple Watch is steadily taking over the wrist watch market.