Apple poised to further dominate smartwatch market with compelling new features

Following Apple’s announcement of its latest Apple Watches – the Apple Watch Series 6 and the Apple Watch SE – on September 15;

Lynnette Luna, Principal Analyst GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company, offers her view:

“While Apple did not announce the long-awaited iPhone 12, it made some significant announcements pertaining to the Apple Watch that should accelerate the device’s adoption and create more revenue-generating opportunities for both Apple and its carrier partners.”

Apple already dominates the smartwatch category. It had a 60% share of smartwatch revenues in 2019, according to GlobalData estimates, and should maintain its grip on a market that GlobalData expects to be worth $64bn by 2030.

“The new Apple Watch Series 6 takes health and fitness even further with new features including measurement of blood oxygen levels and ECG generation. The Apple Watch SE, with a starting price of $249, is not good news for Samsung and Fitbit, which have competed against Apple with lower prices—below $300.

“Not only is Apple ushering in new hardware, it is also bringing in new opportunities for recurring revenue for both itself and its carrier partners—and another way to keep users locked into its ecosystem. Fitness+ is an innovative fitness experience built for Apple Watch that incorporates metrics from Apple Watch for users to visualize on their other Apple devices to obtain a personalized workout experience. The service will cost $10 per month.

“Family Setup in watchOS 7 allows kids and older family members to have their own phone number through a separate mobile plan without having to pair it with their own iPhone. They only need a family member’s iPhone to pair it with. This will give mobile operators the opportunity to create new connected-watch service pricing for families. Combined with the new Apple Watch SE, Family Setup should be compelling if carriers price connectivity right. Currently, most US carriers charge an additional $10 per month for cellular-enabled smartphone.

“Finally, Apple One is a new bundle of existing Apple services. Apple is charging $15 per month for Apple Music, Apple TV, cloud storage and Apple Arcade for individuals and $20 per month for the same bundle for families. A premier bundle is $30 per month to add news and Fitness+. These represent a strong value for consumers who already pay more for many of these services individually.”

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