Summary of our market study

The global market for connected watches has seen substantial growth, with a staggering 53.5% annual increase in volume. Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, shipments of connected watches reached 14.3 million units in the first quarter of 2020, signifying not only sustained demand, but also health-centric technology adoption. This trend aligns with the growing use of e-health functionalities, which 92% of users worldwide now exploit.

Apple remains the market leader, with sales of its Apple Watch more than tripling from 12 million units to 38 million by 2021, eclipsing the Swiss watch industry. The adoption of connected watches has also been boosted by the diversification of the product range, from luxury tastes to sporting utility, with notable collaborations such as Apple x Nike and Fitbit x Adidas. Despite privacy concerns, demand remains strong, especially during the festive season when internet searches and sales explode.

Emerging brands are closing in on market share, as shown by Amazon France's bestseller list, indicating that consumers are moving towards a mix of high-end and moderately priced models. The Asia-Pacific region is expected to post significant growth, contributing to the market's expected expansion at a CAGR of 8.2% from 2022 to 2030.

The dynamic landscape of connected watch consumption in France

In the burgeoning market for connected watches, France has shown remarkable traction towards the adoption of these high-tech timepieces. Broadly defined as smartwatches with advanced communication functions ranging from call forwarding to health monitoring, the French market has seen significant growth. Growth rates indicate an impressive annual increase of over 50%, signalling French consumers' appetite for innovation in personal electronics.

The French connected watch sector reflects global trends, characterized by a wide diversity of players, from new entrants like Fitbit to the giants of consumer electronics.ants such as Apple and Samsung, and traditional watchmakers such as Hublot and TAG Heuer, who are moving into digital connectivity. Despite the wide range of models available, from luxury to fitness-oriented varieties, the French market is particularly fascinated by the health-related capabilities of these devices. This trend is all the more relevant as the aging population looks for devices that help them manage their health and prevent risks.

French interest in connected watches can be measured by sales, which show a robust trajectory. In the space of three years, sales have almost doubled from less than a million units to over 1.5 million, representing an annual growth rate of close to 20%. The value of the market has risen accordingly, to around 400 to 500 million euros. What's more, the appeal of connected watches goes beyond mere gadgetry. French consumers are increasingly exploring smartphone-like functions. Growth in demand for functionalities such as sim cards, voice control and contactless payment ranges from 50% to almost 200%, demonstrating the broadening horizon of usefulness of connected watches.

The sports segment is making a significant contribution to the burgeoning demand for connected watches, with around a fifth of the French population incorporating these devices into their fitness routines. As health and wellness awareness permeates daily life, connected watches are finding a growing space in the lifestyles of the French.

Despite this marked enthusiasm, consumer skepticism about data security persists. Revelations of data breaches in recent years have heightened privacy concerns, but the adoption of connected watches continues to grow. Even though two-thirds of French people express unease about the risks to their privacy, the market shows no signs of slowing down.

Among the broad range of consumer electronics on offer, connected watches have carved out a special place for themselves in France. The amalgamation of luxury, technology, health and sport in a compact, wrist-worn form has propelled these devices into the mainstream. Driven by technological advances and consumer sentiment, the French market for connected watches is booming.

The main players in the French connected watch market

The connected watch market has experienced remarkable growth over the years, thanks to technological advances and an evolution towards health-oriented functions. Several companies have taken the lead in this movement and positioned themselves as forerunners on the global stage, where they compete not only with each other, but also with traditional watchmakers and emerging brands.

  • Apple - The Cupertino-based giant has remained at the forefront of the smartwatch industry with the iconic Apple Watch. Since its debut in 2015, Apple has continued to improve its smartwatch offering, capitalizing on the brand for stylish design and innovative functionalitys such as integrated ECG, fitness tracking and integration with the wider ecosystem of Apple products.

  • Samsung - A major player in consumer electronics, Samsung has carved out a substantial market share with its Galaxy Watch series. These smartwatches stand out for their versatility, health and fitness functions and seamless integration with Samsung smartphones, offering a solid alternative to Apple's dominance.

  • Huawei - Chinese technology conglomerate Huawei has made significant inroads into the connected watch market with its Huawei Watch series. Focusing on a luxurious design combined with long battery life and comprehensive fitness-tracking functions, Huawei continues to challenge its competitors with competitively priced offerings.

  • Google - With the acquisition of Fitbit, Google has demonstrated its ambition to be a serious contender in the wearable technology segment focused on fitness and health. Although relatively new to the market, Google's extensive capabilities in data analysis and artificial intelligence position it as a potential innovator in this field.

  • Xiaomi - Known for its value-for-money products, Xiaomi has made a name for itself in the connected watch market, notably with its affordable Mi Band range. Aimed at budget-conscious consumers looking for functionality without paying a premium price, Xiaomi's smartwatches offer basic health and fitness functions that appeal to a broad market segment.

  • Withings - A French company distinguished by its resolutely health-focused approach, Withings offers a range of sophisticated products, including smartwatches that combine the aesthetics of a classic watch with modern health-tracking functions. Renowned for their medical-grade precision and elegant design, Withings devices appeal to health-conscious consumers who prefer a more traditional look.

  • Garmin - Aimed at athletes and fitness enthusiasts, Garmin's range of smartwatches is renowned for its robustness and accurate activity tracking. From professional athletes to outdoor adventurers, Garmin wearables provide detailed information on performance measurements and physical activity results.
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Summary and extracts

1 Market overview

1.1 Definition and scope of study

A connected watch, also known as a " smartwatch ", is an electronic watch that integrates sophisticated communication functions: telephone call reception and transmission, cell phone notifications, message sending and reception, voice recognition. These instruments are usually equipped with a touchscreen that allows the display to be customized by changing the dial; in general, they act as a companion for smartphones to which they are linked by Bluetooth.

The global market for connected watches grew at a staggering 53.5% per year in volume terms between 2014 and 2020. While North America represents the leading regional market for this technological product, with 35% of global consumption, it is in Asia-Pacific that growth is expected to be strongest in the coming years. Asian demand is fuelled by widespread access to smartphones and the massive use of digital services. The European market is currently the second largest, with Germany, France and Italy leading the way. [Market Research Future]

The main trend that could transform the connected watch market is the shift towards healthcare. Indeed, the arrival of the electrocardiogram on the Apple Watch 4 (validated by the US Food and Drug Administration, among others) is a major step forward.and Drug Administration, and approved in France) has given it a new status as a medical monitoring device. The customer segment of the elderly could thus develop strongly with a connected watch used as a health support and risk prevention tool. Finally, on the other side of the demographic spectrum, young people are more interested in connected watches than their elders, and could leave the traditional high-end or luxury brands behind to equip themselves with smartwatches.

1.2 A fast-growing global market

The global market for connected watches is estimated at US$**.* billion in ****. It is expected to grow at a CAGR of *.*% over the period ****-****.

sales trend for connected watches World, ****-****, in billions of US dollars Source: ****

The main growth driver for this market is the growing demand for monitoring ...

1.3 Connected watch sales in France

In France, connected watches have gained in popularity, despite some initial reluctance to adopt the we can see from the graph below, in **** (***) just ***,*** connected watches had been sold in the whole of France, compared with *.* million in ****, a CAGR of almost **%.thus; the French connected watch market reached ...

1.4 A growing sector despite the COVID crisis

Despite the COVID-** crisis, global shipments of connected watches actually reached **.* million units in the first quarter of ****, representing a**% increase on thesame period in **** (***). Indeed, the health crisis is accelerating changes in people's habits: people are even more sensitive to their health, and are looking for devices that enable them ...

2 Demand analysis

2.1 Connected watches at the heart of French interest in connected objects

According to a survey carried out in October **** byIfop among *,*** people representative of the French population, **% of French people have acquired a connected device for themselves and/or someone else in the last ** months prior to the study.

Percentage of French people who have purchased at least one connected object France, ...

2.2 The use of connected watches

Although connected watches are enjoying a real momentum, the main obstacle to their adoption remains the gadget image they suffer from. Indeed, connected watches offer functions that are increasingly similar to those of smartphones, even if they cannot replace them. Connected watches supplement the smartphone for quick access to notifications or ...

2.3 Connected watches capitalize on the emergence of e-health

E-health refers to "the application of information and communication technologies (***) to all health-related activities". These innovations use data sensors to collect health information. Sensors integrated either into a smartphone, or into a connected object such as a watch or wristband, record various items of information linked to the user's movement or ...

2.4 Sports segment drives demand for connected watches

The use of connected watches for sports purposes is one of the main drivers of demand for connected watches. The first so-called "smart" watches date back to the ****s. But while we started talking about connected watches in the ****s, the concept really took off in the ****s. In addition to ...

2.5 Consumer distrust is a real brake

Connected objects suffer from a real distrust on the part of users: the use of these objects naturally raises questions in terms of personal data collection and security. Events such as the discovery of a leaked database containing health information on users of connected watches in ****, tend to reinforce users' fears. ...

2.6 Connected watches for Christmas

Thanks to Google Trends, we can observe the seasonality of demand for connected watches through the evolution of the number of queries for the term "montre connectée" in France over the last * years. We then observe a rise in demand at Christmas time, between the end of November and the ...

3 Market structure

3.1 Market structure

Among connected watch manufacturers, we distinguish between international players (***) who market watches on a large scale, and smaller, French companies that target particular segments of demand to build a reputation for specialty, such as Withings.

In addition, connected watches are distributed both by specialist stores (***).

3.2 Apple, the undisputed leader in the connected watch market

Apple is the undisputed leader in this market, with its Apple Watch launched in ****. In ****, Apple Watch sales exceeded those of the Swiss watch industry for the first time. They sold ** million worldwide (***), according to Strategy Analytics. Apple dominates this sector in terms of market share. In ****, sales of connected watches ...

3.3 Sector concentration

The connected watch sector, and wearables in general, is experiencing a wave of concentration. Indeed, the tech giants, the GAFAMs in particular, are trying to carve out a place for themselves in this market, either via internal development or acquisitions.

Announced in **** and after more than a year of regulatory review, ...

4 Offer analysis

4.1 Connected watch product range typology

The range of connected wellness products and services available in the US and UK is similar to that in France. The range of products is identical, with international manufacturers (***) targeting global markets. As a reminder, this market is made up of :

new entrants such as Fitbit, Xiaomi and Withings, consumer electronics ...

4.2 Connected watches compete with classic watchmaking

In addition to the major tech players - Apple, Samsung, Google and others - traditional watchmakers are alsooffering connected watches. Having long ignored the competition from these connected watches, it now appears that the traditional watch segment has undergone a profound change, suffering a gradual decline in sales volume.

The graph ...

4.3 Development of the offering

Partnership development

Various sports brands have developed close partnerships with manufacturers of connected watches. After its partnership with Hermès, Apple set up a collaboration with Nike around accessories and functionalities to be developed in Apple Watches. To keep pace with this trend, Fitbit and Adidas have also decided to launch ...

5 Regulations

5.1 Regulations governing connected watches

Regulations on connected objects and data protection

Initially, it was the French Data Protection Act of January *, **** that provided a legal framework for the protection of personal data in France.

In the European Union, the General Data Protection Regulation (***).

Thus, only the data necessary for the required use may be requested ...

6 Positioning the players

6.1 Positioning the players

  • Apple Watch
  • FitBit
  • Google
  • Withings
  • Swatch Group
  • Samsung Galaxy Watch (Groupe Samsung)
  • Encaps
  • Encaps

List of charts presented in this market study

  • Worldwide sales of Swiss watches
  • Connected watch sales
  • Evolution de la taille du marché mondial des montres connectées
  • Connected watch sales in France
  • Impact of COVID-19 on shipments of connected watches
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Latest news

Bard, Google's answer to ChatGPT - 18/07/2023
  • Google's chatbot Bard is now available in Europe and Brazil.
  • The service is now available in over 40 languages, including French, Arabic and German.
  • The service has been launched in 180 other countries (only in English, Japanese or Korean).
  • Bard is based on the analysis of billions of online texts and up-to-date news data, unlike its competitor ChatGPT, whose data ends in 2021.
Swatch Group benefits from Asian recovery - 14/07/2023
  • Swatch Group generates 56% of its sales in Asia.
  • The Group's own boutiques now account for 40% of Swatch Group activity.
Withings, the French company challenging Apple in connected healthcare - 20/04/2023
  • Withings has 350 employees and is ranked in the French Tech 120 program for the third year running.
Swatch Group forecasts a record - 17/03/2023
  • Sales forecast for 2023: between 8.5 and 9 billion Swiss francs
  • - Increase in U.S. market share to 15% by 2022
  • - Over 1 million MoonSwatches sold in nine months
    • The Group has increased the number of points of sale for its star watch from 110 to 180
    • With sales boosted by up to 50% for stores selling this phenomenon edition
CES 2023: Withings takes health data collection a step further - 06/01/2023
  • Withings is a true pillar of French Tech at CES in Las Vegas
Swatch Group grows despite China, benefits from the success of its MoonSwatch - 16/07/2022
  • Launching the MoonSwatch and creating rarity for this model
  • Swatch Group's gamble paid off, with small, limited releases in 110 boutiques, which encouraged speculation
  • 50% increase in demand in boutiques
  • Disruptions to distribution in Asia, notably in Hong Kong, its biggest market before the pandemic
  • Double-digit growth in all other markets

Companies quoted in this study

This study contains a complete overview of the companies in the market, with the latest figures and news for each company. :

Apple Watch
Swatch Group
Samsung Galaxy Watch (Groupe Samsung)

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