The smartwatch market in India grew 171% YoY in Q3, while global shipments jumped 30% according to Counterpoint.

The 171% YoY jump in smartphone shipments in India during Q3 2021 was driven by growth of local brands, says the Counterpoint report. Shipments globally also jumped 30%, and all markets grew except China and Europe.

North America was the largest market from Q4 2020 to Q2 2022, and though shipments increased 21% YoY in Q3, India’s massive growth means it is now the second biggest market. Meanwhile China’s market dropped 28%, the fourth consecutive quarterly contraction, which Counterpoint attributes to the ongoing lockdowns there.

In terms of the chief beneficiaries of this growth, Apple grew 48% YoY thanks to strong sales of the Apple Watch 8 series which was released in early September. This model alone accounted for about 56% of sales, and Apple accounted for about half of the market in the HLOS (high level OS – a term essentially meaning high end) smartwatches in Q3 2022. Big numbers, even though this represents a slight decrease from the 54% share in Q2 2022 due to a slump in North America and Europe.

Samsung also cleaned up, increasing its shipments by 62% quarter on quarter (for some reason the report switches between comparative time periods) propelled by the new Galaxy Watch 5 series. It’s market share of the HLOS segment increased by 5% points QoQ, and its overall shipments grew 6% YoY. Globally Samsung is in second place but with a decreased market share (down by 2.7% YoY).

Behind the big two was Noise, which grew 218% YoY and was the top performer the Indian market. In the battle for the basic smartwatch market (as opposed to the higher end models like the Apple Watch) there is a lot of competition in India, and the gap between Noise and Fire-Boltt is less than 1%.

“Among the types of smartwatches, the basic smartwatch, with relatively lighter versions of operating systems (OSs) and more affordable prices, has been the key driver in sharply boosting the global market recently,” said Research Analyst at Counterpoint Woojin Son. “While HLOS smartwatch shipments grew 23% YoY in Q3 2022, basic smartwatch shipments more than doubled YoY, accounting for 35% of the total market. This remarkable increase in basic smartwatch shipments shows us that the market base is rapidly expanding toward more accessible segments amid aggressive drives by the supply side. But still, in terms of revenue, the HLOS smartwatch overwhelms the basic smartwatch with a market size of almost 10 times due to its high average selling price (ASP).”

Senior Analyst Anshika Jain added: “India’s smartwatch market grew 171% YoY in Q3 2022 to become the biggest market in the world. The main factor behind the record quarter was India’s festive season. Indian brands expanding their product portfolios at affordable price points and emphasis on local manufacturing also contributed to the growth. Bluetooth-calling emerged as an important feature, contributing a 58% share in total shipments, the highest ever share to date. Consumers are also preferring bigger display sizes, which is evident from the fact that over half of the total shipments in Q3 came from the 1.5”-1.69” display size.”

Here’s some graphs if you enjoy your stats in a more visual format.

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