Apple Watch Series 4 is picked out in a new report from eMarketer which predicts the year ahead in sales of smartwatches.
Intriguingly, smartwatches in general are expected to grow to 11.1% of all U.S. adults in 2019, that's 28.7 million of them. Smartwatches are seen as a key driver of all wearable tech and more than half of adult wearable tech users, that's people over 18, will use a smartwatch.
In total, 60.5 million people will us a wearable device in the U.S. next year, a figure which includes some under-18s.
This figure means more than one in five people (specifically 21.5%) who use the internet will have a wearable device.
As might be expected as a group of users increases from a low base, the percentage change in users is expected to slow. So, although 2018 saw a 29.9% increase in smartwatch users of the previous year, reaching 24.5 million users, 2019 will only see a 17% increase to reach that 28.7 million figure.
Cindy Liu, eMarketer forecasting analyst, only picked out one brand of wearable device, the Apple Watch Series 4. She said:
Wearables like smartwatches are now coming equipped with additional health features, which are especially appealing to older Americans. The Apple Watch Series 4 is outfitted with some major enhancements, including ECG [electrocardiography] readings and fall-detection features.
It's these features which make Americans aged 55 and over the fastest-growing group of electronic wearable users in the States. That means 8.2 million of these older Americans will use a wearable device, up 15% over the year. It's still a small share of users but is growing faster than previously expected.
For other users, improvements in areas like design and battery life are important. As Liu went on to say:
Continuous improvements in design and functionality are key drivers of smartwatch adoption,” Liu said. “Specifically, LTE connectivity will be a huge driver, as it allows smartwatch users to stay connected while leaving their phones behind. Other improvements, like longer battery life, larger screens and new health features, will be sure to attract new users.
The lesson from all this is that smartwatches in general, and Apple Watch in particular, are growing fast and slowly shifting from a niche pursuit to something genuinely mainstream. Certainly, one acid test is that the moment when you might spot an Apple Watch on someone's wrist and wonder what it is, has long past.
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