Fitbit, the market-leading activity tracker challenged by Apple’s own smart watch, the Apple Watch, is apparently on a lot more wrists this Christmas, according to a recent report. As such, talk of the Cupertino-developed smart watch challenging Fitbit’s position as the world’s most popular wearable could have been a little premature.
QZ observes that Fitbit’s iOS app “shot to the top of Apple’s free app chart in the United States as of the afternoon of Dec. 25,” indeed indicating that a significant number of iOS device owners had just unwrapped a brand new Fitbit device earlier in the day, on Christmas morning. The report rightly adds:
While downloads don’t give a clear picture of Fitbit’s sales, the surge suggests that many people are setting up new devices.
Before now, IDC had explained how Apple’s share of the wearables market has rocketed since the launch of its smart watch, and explained in a report published in August that Cupertino is now the second-largest wearables vendor (coming in behind Fitbit itself).
Given Apple’s accelerated growth, and the anticipated demise of so-called “basic wearables,” Jitesh Ubrani, Senior Research Aanalyst for IDC Mobile Device Trackers, argued at the time that Apple could take the No. 1 position over the coming years.
Apple has clearly garnered an impressive lead in this space and its dominance is expected to continue. And, although Fitbit outshipped Apple, it’s worth noting that Fitbit only sells basic wearables – a category that is expected to lose share over the next few years, leaving Apple poised to become the next market leader for all wearables.
It nevertheless seems apparent that Fitbit is maintaining its position as a popular option for customers looking to improve their fitness levels using an activity tracking device.
The relatively low price point and the Fitbit brand (which has become known among the masses in recent years) are all working in the company’s favor; it should come as no surprise to hear that Apple Watch sales reportedly aren’t impacting on Fitbit’s sales, according to the company’s CEO. At this moment in time, however, the two are very different products, though this doesn’t mean the situation won’t change in the coming years.
For now, you can expect to see a lot more Fitbit devices on wrists in 2016.