New report and post on smartwatches

My firm, Jackdaw Research, has just published a report for subscription clients on the topic of smartwatches, entitled Smartwatches: Market Prospects. It features several consumer surveys which gauge demand for current and future smartwatch features, and evaluates the current offerings in the smartwatch market. I’m bearish on smartwatches as they currently stand – demand for the features they offer is weak, and that demand is currently being met by weak supply too, as all of the current offerings are flawed by virtue of the compromises they make between battery life, displays, performance and usability. The market is likely to remain small unless something changes – one of those, of course, being a disruptive entry to the market by Apple.

My Techpinions post today summarizes some of the key findings of the report. Here’s a quote:

Measured against these criteria, the current crop of smartwatches on sale does very poorly. I did my own ratings as part of my report, and I ended up with scores which were barely above 50% across these seven categories. Unlike most reviewers, I don’t see the Pebble as the clear leader in this market – in fact, all the devices ended up clustered around a very small range of unimpressive scores. If we’re really honest with ourselves, we should expect much more of these devices before we embrace them, and unless they do more we’re not likely to see them sell above current levels.

The UK’s Guardian newspaper also did an extensive write-up on the report, which you can find here.

There’s more information about the report, and an opportunity to buy it directly, on the Jackdaw Research website. The report is available as part of our subscription research service for clients, and is $500 for non-clients.

  • mrochester

    I agree with your observations here; at present smartwatches don’t offer anything compelling to the average consumer (or even me as a self-confessed geek). I’m incredibly cynical about smartwatches and see them as just another bit of technology these companies can profit from (I have no issue with companies making profit, but not from passing fads like smartwatches).