Analytical company Canalys just published a new report, which states that Apple regained the #1 position in the wearable market (Apple does not provide official sales figures for the Apple Watch, but stated that its wearable category also including AirPods and Beats, grew 75% year over year). According to the report, Apple shipped 3.9 million Apple Watches in Q3 2017, comparing to 3.6 million for Xiaomi and 3.5 million for Fitbit. The cellular Apple Watch Series 3 in particular saw strong demand of 800,000 units, despite cellular connectivity issues in some geographies. It is worth noting that the cellular model also had strong demand and limited supply early on.
“Strong demand for the LTE-enabled Apple Watch Series 3 has dispelled service providers’ doubts about the cellular smartwatch not appealing to customers,” said Canalys Analyst Jason Low. Despite strong shipments, the Apple Watch Series 3 did not reach its full potential in Q3. It suffered limited availability as demand outstripped supply in major markets. Service providers had underestimated demand for the new Apple Watch. “In China, customers with high expectations are being driven away by the service disruption fiasco in the country. Besides bringing in more stock, operators should work on improving their remote service provisioning systems to cater for the expected higher demand in Q4,” said Low.”