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Apple Stumbles in China: Can it Recover in 2024?

Published: 1.17.2024

According to the global wearable wristband device analysis and forecast data released by Canalys, the total sales volume of this category in 2023 will be 186 million units, an increase of 2%.  

The main driver of its growth was emerging markets (especially India), where shipments of basic watches increased significantly by 22%. This growth effectively offset the decline in the other two sub-categories, which came from a 9% decline in smart watches and basic bracelets respectively.  

The growth rate of wearable wristband devices will reach 10% in 2024. This positive trend is driven by a resurgence in global interest in smartwatches, with shipments expected to grow by 17%. 

Canalys predicts that the smart watch industry is expected to rebound in 2024, with shipments expected to reach 83 million units. Users who were initially attracted to basic watches or affordable smartwatches are now looking for more features. This trend is even more pronounced among users who purchased devices during the epidemic. 

Canalys believes that the manufacturer's goal is to increase shipments and thereby increase revenue by promoting high-end smart watches. These smartwatches will come with improved hardware, including extended battery life and possibly micro-LED screens for high-end devices.  

Enhanced functionality also includes novel fitness and health features such as blood pressure monitoring and sleep apnea detection. These features are expected to become new industry standards when Apple launches its next 10th anniversary series of Apple Watches. Despite the recent ban on Apple Watch by the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC), the previous generation device will help make up for the losses in the U.S. market. 

It can be seen from the hot sales of related products of Apple and Huawei that high-end smartphones with more functions and smarter features will become the new favorite in the market. However, at a time when VR/AR devices are in the cold war, it is still difficult to say whether smart watches can become the representative of a new generation of smart terminals. 

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