The most “smart” watches: crowdfunding, demand, forecasts, results

    Another reason for discussing the prospects of smart watches was the results of fundraising in support of the new model - Pebble Time : in an hour, they managed to raise $ 2 million on Kickstarter. Is this direction so promising that even a crowdfunding startup takes off? Or is it entirely merit Pebble?

    The first Pebble watch model was recognized as the most successful startup on Kickstarter in 2012, receiving more than $ 10 million from 69 thousand users. Smart watches connected to smartphones based on iOS or Android via Bluetooth and could show information about SMS, incoming calls and letters on a screen made using electronic ink technology.

    Then, in 2014, the company released a second watch model - Pebble Steel with a stainless steel case. And so, in February a new model came out, which raised over $ 2 million with an initial bar of $ 500,000. Fundraising will last another month.
    Of the innovations, a 64-color display and a microphone can be noted - with its help you can create notes and voice messages.

    In addition, you can install applications from the online store of Pebble Technology on any model’s watch.

    The company is located in Palo Alto (California). According to Crunchbase estimates, about $ 27.5 million was invested in Pebble Technology in total from 2011 to 2013. At the moment, the company employs about 130 employees.

    For those wishing to purchase a Pebble Time watch faster and cheaper, a preliminary order is opened on Kickstarter. They can be obtained in May for $ 159 or $ 179. The watch will go on sale at a price of $ 199.

    Competitors are not asleep

    Apple plans to release its “smart” watches in three versions: regular, sports and premium. The cheapest of them will cost around $ 350. As Apple CEO Tim Cook noted , the biggest surprise for users will be how many tasks Apple Watch will perform.

    Nick Hayek, Swatch Swiss CEO, said in turn that a Swatch Touch watch that does not require recharging the battery will be released in two to three months. In addition, they have a function to count steps taken and calories burned.

    Since such serious companies joined the fight, it means that there really are prospects. But are users willing to pay that kind of money? What does statistics say about this ?


    How demanded are smart watches?

    In this matter, the platform that is supported by the watch matters. The main ones are Android, Android Wear and iOS. However, according to Canalys analysts, Android Wear lost ground in 2014, and only 720 thousand devices were sold, which is 15% of 2013 sales. Manufacturers such as Samsung, LG, Sony, which release some of the models based on Android Wear, have already received disappointing results. But in relation to the other two platforms, the audience was logically divided into users of Android smartphones and iOS smartphones.

    This situation largely explains the success of Pebble watches, which support two platforms at once: Android and iOS. During 2013, over 400 thousand watches were sold. In 2014, Pebble announced that it had sold 1 million of its watches. Given that Pebble is a young startup, this is a very serious bid for success.

    As for the Russian market, by the end of 2014, according to Svyaznoy, a little over 220,000 “smart” accessories from various manufacturers had been bought.

    However, in general, the demand for smart watches is not high so far, which is confirmed by GfK statistics. But he has every chance to grow with the release of Apple Watch and the further development of Pebble Technology. So, everything is just beginning.

    Also popular now: