Data Analysis

The popularity of watches that show more than just the time is rising. „Wearable technology“ grew 86% year-on-year and took almost 5% of the revenue for electronics

16. 04. 2021 | Adéla Berková

8 April 2021 – Watches that show far more than just the time. They are a growing trend in recent years. Wearable technology, the overarching term for smart watches, smart bands and accessories, grew 86% last year compared to the year before. And this growth was not just reported in the Czech Republic. „People have quickly gotten used to linking their smart watch and telephone and controlling it easily without having to take the phone out of their pocket every time. And controlling how much exercise we get every day, especially in these times, is very important,“ said Michal Buzek, Chief Analyst of the Heureka shopping advisor, a member of Heureka Group. This category accounts for almost 5% of the revenue in the electronics segment and new brands have sensed the market potential, with several entering the Czech Republic last year. A detailed analysis is presented by the Heureka shopping advisor, a member of Heureka Group, a group of price-comparison sites in Central and Eastern Europe.

„The first quarter of this year indicates that last year’s trend has continued. Compared to last year, the first quarter is about 150% stronger,“ said Michal Buzek, Chief Analyst of the Heureka shopping advisor, adding: „These are not negligible figures, because the category of wearable technology already accounts for almost 5% of the overall revenue in electronics. That is a remarkable figure.“ Not only Czechs are increasingly interested in tracking their exercise. Similar growth is apparent in Slovakia, Hungary and Slovenia, meaning across the entire Central and Eastern European region. „In Slovenia and Croatia, wearable technology grew by 150 and 300% year-on-year, respectively,“ added Buzek.

Walk, run, exercise

One of the main reasons people get smart watches or bands is of course to control their own exercise – from measuring basic statistics such as step counts or the number of kilometres run, to tracking their route using GPS and monitoring their heart rate. Watches and bands often feature an alert to make a person get up and move if they’ve been inactive for a certain period of time.

„Control of how much exercise we get every day is very important, especially in these times when activity is restricted,“ claimed Michal Buzek from Heureka, adding: „Thanks to linking with various sports applications, people can also stay in touch and compete with each other, at least virtually. You can also check whether you walked more steps on a given day than your spouse, or beat your friend at running.“

An increased interest in sports activities is also supported by the fact that sports, specifically the categories of cycling, home fitness and running, were among the fastest-growing segments in e‑commerce. While travel was banned, at least there was exercise.

What time is it? Time to pay

Every year, an increasing share of customers reaches for a more „complex“ device, which also enables the simple control of a mobile phone in addition to measuring exercise. „People have quickly gotten used to linking their smart watch and telephone and controlling it easily without having to take the phone out of their pocket every time,“ stated Buzek.
His words are confirmed by Petr, an IT manager at a Liberec-based company, who aptly summarized why he got a smart watch: „I’m addicted to my phone and the internet. The watch is great for me because I don’t have to take out my phone for every little thing, but can manage to write messages through predefined replies and take calls even when I don’t have the phone with me. And I can’t imagine paying at the store without the watch anymore.“

Czechs love Apple, while Xiaomi leads in Slovakia and Hungary

In terms of the volume of online sales, the most popular watch on the Czech market is the Apple watch, which was the first on the market to come up with payments through their watch. Other popular brands include Samsung and Garmin, followed by Xiaomi and Huawei. „However, several new big players entered this segment last year, for instance Wotchi, Niceboy, Haylou, Forever and Suunto, attracting the attention of customers during the first year and taking almost two percent of the turnover in the entire category,“ added Chief Analyst for Heureka Michal Buzek.

An interesting fact is that while Czechs prefer the Apple brand, more affordable brands such as Xiaomi and Huawei dominate in other countries in Central and Eastern Europe. „In other countries, it is also apparent that the most popular brands bite off a greater share of customer interest than in Czechia. Although it might look complicated for new players on the market, the potential is high everywhere given the immense interest,“ said Michal Buzek.

Watches priced like a decent TV

In a year-on-year comparison, the average price of the best-selling smart watches and bands almost hasn’t changed at all. „This is related to the entry of new brands. They often try to keep up the same design and technical aspects as the long-term competition, at a lower price,“ explained Michal Buzek.

There are smart watches available on the market for CZK 65,000. The most expensive item sold on Heureka was a Garmin watch (MARQ Athlete 010–02006–16 Premium) worth CZK 39,000. Naturally, customers usually don’t spend this much to buy a watch.

„Most customers, a full half, most often search for and filter smart watches worth around CZK 4,300,“ stated Michal Buzek, adding: „The price largely depends on the functions and design offered by the watch. If customers do not insist on a design that is indistinguishable from a classic watch, and are happy with a simple look and basic functions to measure exercise, they will pay around a thousand crowns on average.“

Smart watches under the Christmas tree? Shopping on Black Friday

„Smart watches and bands sell the most in November, and are a popular Christmas present. They definitely sold the most last year on 27 November, meaning during Black Friday,“ claimed Michal Buzek. Customers most often unwrapped an Amazfit GTS, Apple Watch Series 3 38mm, Armodd Candywatch Premium, Garmin Vivo Active 3 Optic or Samsung Galaxy Watch Active SM-R500 under the Christmas tree.

About Heureka is the largest shopping advisor and price comparison site on the Czech and Slovak internet. More than 4.2 million real users (NetMonitor) visit Heureka every month, making it consistently one of the 10 most visited websites in Czechia. Customers choose and compare product offers from more than 38,000 e‑shops on Heureka. Heureka helps people make easier, safer and more informed shopping choices. Heureka is a member of Heureka Group, a group of price-comparison sites in Central and Eastern Europe.

About Heureka Group

Heureka Group covers nine countries in Central and Eastern Europe, 23 million monthly visitors and an offer from more than 55,000 e‑shops. The key mission of Heureka Group is to link e‑shops and brands with customers. The main objective is to help e‑shops, brands and other partners address all of our users across the region and provide them with maximum support in all aspects while doing so. Heureka Group also includes Árukereső.hu in Hungary, in Romania, in Bulgaria, in Slovenia, in Croatia, in Serbia and in Bosnia.