No wearables boost from Apple Watch

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Consumer interest in smartwatch sector stayed same as in November, despite launch of Apple’s first wearable

The Apple Watch has not boosted interest in the wearables market significantly with 84 per cent of the UK saying they still won’t buy one – the same as in November.

This is according to research firm Kantar Worldpanel ComTech, which asked 15,000 smartphone users in April for their views on the wearables market.

It found that the same amount of people would not buy a smartwatch despite the release of the Apple Watch in the same month, although penetration in the UK did increase slightly, from one per cent of the UK to 1.3 per cent. They said the main reason for buying a smartwatch was “owning the latest tech”.

In November, 41 per cent said they did not need a smartwatch because their smartphone served the same function, How- ever, the biggest barrier to adoption in the latest panel was cost, with only 20 per cent of those looking at buying a wearable willing to spend over £300 on it.

Kantar consumer insights analyst Imran Choudhury said manufacturers are now seeing more traction in getting the benefits of wearables across to consumers, but they are still overpriced.

“Of the 84 per cent who said they weren’t interested in buying a smartwatch, the top reason is ‘it’s too expensive’. £299 for the entry level Apple watch is above the amount most consumers are willing to pay.

“Of those considering buying a smartwatch, only around 20 per cent are willing to spend over £300. In November 2014, the top barrier was not seeing the use as their ‘smartphone meets their needs’. So, the amount of peo- ple who don’t understand what a smartwatch is has dropped, suggesting the noise being made about smartwatches is being heard.”

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