IDC is out today with its latest data on the wearable market — both smartwatches and more basic activity trackers— and within we get a look at Apple Watch sales for the fourth quarter of 2015.

Closely mirroring other recent reports, IDC puts Apple Watch sales at approximately 4.1 million units during the important holiday quarter, positioning Apple at #2 only behind Fitbit (which wouldn’t be included at all if we were to look at just full-featured smartwatches). Fitbit, according to IDC’s data, sold almost double Apple with 8.1 million units shipped and 29.5% of the market versus 15% for Apple.

Apple grew its Watch distribution, enjoyed holiday promotions, and drove the company’s overall ‘Other Products’ revenue during 4Q15. However, volumes for the quarter grew only slightly from the previous quarter and total revenues have yet to counterbalance the slowing growth and declines from the company’s other product categories. Expectations are higher for the next-generation Watch that can leverage the company’s platforms (HealthKit, ResearchKit, WatchKit, and watchOS 2) and connectivity capabilities.

The Apple Watch sales estimate is slightly under the 5.1 million units for the quarter that Strategy Analytics calculated in its report from last week. That report looked only at the smartwatch category not including the basic fitness trackers, however, and noted that Apple’s 5.1 million units sold was over half of the total 8.1 million total smartwatch units it estimated were sold during the quarter, a number which for the first time matched sales of traditional Swiss watches. That’s opposed to IDC’s report measuring the wearables market as a whole with 27.4 million units shipped during the quarter (up 126.9% year over year).

As for how the other full-fledged smartwatch makers are competing with Apple, IDC estimates Samsung sold 1.3 million units during Q4 and just 3.1 million during all of 2015. The rest of the smartwatch makers didn’t even chart and were included in IDC’s “Others” category.


When looking at 2015 in its entirety (above), IDC estimates around 11.6 million Apple Watch units sold, putting Apple just behind Xiaomi for the year and ahead of Garmin and Samsung.

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About the Author

Jordan Kahn

Jordan writes about all things Apple as Senior Editor of 9to5Mac, & contributes to 9to5Google, 9to5Toys, & He also co-authors 9to5Mac’s Logic Pros series.