Kantar reports that Apple has retained its dominance of the smartwatch sector, even as overall growth has started to slow. The data is based on sales as of July of this year, so pre-dating the launch of the Apple Watch Series 2.

Apple continues to dominate this segment with a 33.5% share, although that lead shrank slightly in the last three months as the market awaited the Apple Watch Series 2 announcement. The EU4 countries show a similar trend, with […] Apple leading at 31.8%.

The company says that the Apple Watch Series 2 seems ideally placed to appeal to those intending to purchase a wearable within the next 12 months, offering the two key features they are seeking …

September 7th’s unveiling of the Apple Watch Series 2 showed Apple addressing the key considerations cited by those planning to buy, including GPS, one of the most-desired functionalities, and waterproofing, the most-desired feature.

Cost is of course a factor for intenders, with Kantar speculating that recent price drops may boost sales significantly, a point also made by Zac in his recent opinion piece.

Finally the company suggests that traditional watch brands may be coming under increasing pressure. Most Apple Watch sales to date have been to those who had long since abandoned conventional watches, but Kantar has seen increasing sales from existing watch owners.

Although a minority of smartwatches are currently displacing traditional wrist timepieces, the move towards more traditional watch designs puts brands such as Fossil, Mondaine and Tag under pressure to evolve their products to include features like activity and sleep tracking, and notifications. In the three months ending July 2016, 20% of recent smartwatch buyers in the US made a purchase to replace a classic timepiece, rising to 30% in EU4 [Germany, France, Italy, UK].

I’m not personally upgrading to the Series 2 for reasons I recently outlined, but I am extremely impressed with watchOS 3 – of which more another day. You can see all the new features offered in the new version of watchOS, and if you’re not sure whether an upgrade to the Series 2 is justified, check out the review roundup, our own extensive review and our video guide.

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