While I enjoy using smartwatches, it is still an area of the mobile market that is a tough sell to consumers. Thanks to its massive marketing budget and Galaxy ecosystem, CNET reports that Samsung shipped half a million smartwatches in the first quarter of 2014.
It is important to understand that the figures from Strategy Analytics are for units shipped to retailers and not a count of devices actually sold to consumers. The figures also do not include the latest Gear 2 or Fit devices and just included the Galaxy Gear watch that is now on sale at a significantly lower price given the release of the new products. 500,000 shipped is still a significant figure and shows that there is definitely some demand for Samsung smartwatches.
Next month at Google I/O we will likely see the first Android Wear offering and given Google's influence it will be interesting to see if consumers more start picking up smartwatches.
I personally use an original Pebble I bought via Kickstarter and like the functionality and cross-platform support. Smartwatches will continue to improve and drop in price and Samsung is leading the charge at this time.
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