Abandonment rate for smartwatches, fitness trackers grows to nearly 30%: Survey
Smartwatches as well as fitness trackers have seen a higher level of abandonment as people see very little value for using it.
Just a few years after smartwatches came into the market, it is all set to now go out of the market. This is as the abandonment rate of smartwatches is 29% and 30% for fitness trackers, because people do not find them useful and get bored for them or they break, users said in a survey conducted by research firm Gartner Inc.
“Dropout from device usage is a serious problem for the industry. The abandonment rate is quite high relative to the usage rate. To offer a compelling enough value proposition, the uses for wearable devices need to be distinct from what smartphones typically provide. Wearables makers need to engage users with incentives and gamification,” said Angela McIntyre, research director at Gartner.
This comes just a day later when the growth of smartwatches saw a decline especially due to 71% decline in sales of Apple's smartwatches, according to an IDC report. The smartwatch shipments of Apple declined to 1.1 million units in Q3 from 3.9 million units in the same quarter last year.
The 2016 Gartner Personal Technologies Study surveyed 9,592 online respondents from Australia, the US and the UK between June and August 2016, to gain a better understanding of consumers' attitudes toward wearables, particularly their buying behavior for smartwatches, fitness trackers and virtual reality (VR) glasses.
According to the survey, smartwatch adoption is still in the early adopter stage (10%), while fitness trackers have reached early mainstream (19%). Only 8% of consumers have used VR glasses/head-mounted displays (excluding cardboard types).
It further found out that people typically purchase smartwatches and fitness trackers for their own use, with 34% of fitness trackers and 26% of smartwatches given as gifts.
“Continued growth in the adoption of smartwatches and fitness trackers will now be from mainstream consumers instead of early technology adopters,” said McIntyre. “The greatest hurdle for fitness tracker and smartwatch providers to overcome is the consumer perception that the devices do not offer a compelling enough value proposition.”
Apart from this, the respondents indicated that wearable devices are priced too high, given their perceived usefulness. Gartner believes that wearable providers that do not have a strong brand name will find it more difficult to grow market share, competing directly with popular brands. It report said that they should instead accept lower margins and provide an alternative that is priced significantly lower than top brands, but still has good quality for price-sensitive consumers.