Because Apple won’t report official Apple Watch sales numbers, we have to rely on analyst estimates to get an understanding of how well the Watch is faring with consumers. New numbers out of IDC push sales estimates upward somewhat, suggesting sales of 3.6 million units from April to June. In general, analyst consensus for Apple Watch sales is around 3 million units.

According to IDC, 3.6 million units shipped makes up 20% of the overall wearable market for the same period. Apple currently sits just behind Fitbit in sales volume, which shipped 4.4 million wearable devices. Due to the drastic difference in average selling price between models of Apple Watch and other wearables however, Apple is highly likely to be far ahead in terms of profits.

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“Anytime Apple enters a new market, not only does it draw attention to itself, but to the market as a whole,” noted Ramon Llamas, Research Manager for IDC’s Wearables team. “Its participation benefits multiple players and platforms within the wearables ecosystem, and ultimately drives total volumes higher. Apple also forces other vendors – especially those that have been part of this market for multiple quarters – to re-evaluate their products and experiences. Fairly or not, Apple will become the stick against which other wearables are measured, and competing vendors need to stay current or ahead of Apple. Now that Apple is officially a part of the wearables market, everyone will be watching to see what other wearable devices it decides to launch, such as smart glasses or hearables.”

Whilst we doubt Apple will launch a ‘hearable’ anytime soon, IDC does say that Apple Watch sales made up about 2/3rds of the smart wearable market; i.e. wearables that can run third-party apps and do more than basic fitness bands.

With the initial supply constraints dealt with, Apple Watch is expanding to more retail outlets such as Best Buy. Early reception appears to be good, with Best Buy representative saying Apple Watch sales were ‘so strong’. Apple Watch is also expected to be a big hit in the upcoming holiday season. Meanwhile, Apple retail exec Angela Ahrendts recently said Apple Watch is the best back to school gift ever for cheating on tests …

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