The competition between Chinese and domestic brands is not limited to smartphones. India’s GOQii continues to hold the first position in terms of wearable shipments in the country holding a 20.8% market share in Q1 2017, according to research firm IDC’s Quarterly Wearable Tracker report. This is up from a 15.5% share that GOQii held in the previous quarter. During the quarter, GOQii shipments increased by 21% quarter-on-quarter (QoQ). The GOQii Heart Care tracker program and promotional upgrade offer helped it maintain the first spot.

Xiaomi had taken to the first spot in Q1 2016 when it had a 27% market share in terms of shipments, sustained by its Mi Band (1st Gen) shipments. In the next quarter (Q2 2016), GOQii surpassed Xiaomi to secure the first position (with 16% market share) after it made an aggressive entry into the fitness band category by launching GOQii band 2.0. Note that Xiaomi also launched an upgraded version of its Mi Band at around the same time that GOQii entered the market with its new product line.

Overall, the Indian wearable market shipped 612,000 devices during Q4 2016, down 9.3% QoQ from the previous quarter. These units include “smart wearables” that can run third-party apps (Apple Watch, Samsung Gear) and basic wearables which cannot run third-party apps (Mi Band).

Shipments by Category

The cheaper basic wearable segment accounted for almost 90% of the overall shipments in India during Q1 2017. The reason behind the segments dominance include low (entry) prices, and better value for the low price, since more basic wearable companies are offering features like heart rate tracking, sleep monitoring, etc. for less than $50.

However, when confusing on the ‘less than $50’ segment, the category accounted for 78.6% of shipments in the India during Q1 2017. “This entry level segment is led by GoQii followed by Xiaomi…new entrants like Titan, with aggressive marketing, have entered Indian wearable market in March further increasing the competition in this highly cluttered entry-level segment,” IDC added.

More than 30% of wearables were shipped offline

The research firm also pointed out that offline shipments accounted for 36.2% of the overall wearable market in India during the quarter, up from 24.3% share in the previous quarter. IDC said that offline shipments are expected to go up in the coming quarters. New brands like Fossil, Titan from India have largely focused their sales via offline retail channels, while even online brands like Xiaomi and GOQii are also increasingly focusing on offline retail to increase their presence and to add new customers.

Other Vendor highlights

Xiaomi slid to the second position in Q1 2017 with 10.1% market share in terms of shipments. The brand’s shipments were down by 30.6% QoQ. Increasing competition and a limited supply of Mi Band 2 in Q1 led to the decline, according to IDC.

Fitbit continued to hold its third place in Q1. Its shipments In India declined 42.7% QoQ. Note that Fitbit had held the first position in Q4 2016 in terms of worldwide shipments.