September 16 2020: Kids smartwatches is an emerging sub-segment of wearable technology in Asia-Pacific (APAC). Concerns regarding the safety of children in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic is the prime area of interest for the parents, especially the dual-career couples, and is expected to further drive the adoption of kids’ smartwatches in the region, says leading data and analytics company, GlobalData.
Kids’ smartwatches are equipped with multiple features such as GPS tracking, child location and activity tracking, SOS button, messaging, cellular connectivity and voice assistant features, which help parents stay connected with their children.
Says Manish Chaurasiya, Senior Analyst at GlobalData: “Asia-Pacific is amongst the leading regions for kids’ smartwatches segment, owing to the presence of prominent vendors such as Immo, Huawei, Xiaomi and Vtech. Countries such as China and India continue to be the prime contributors to the growing demand, with a significant market share in the segment.”
The APAC region continues to be a buzzing ground for kids’ smartwatch segment, with companies adopting inorganic as well as organic growth strategies. For instance, Fitbit acquired Hong Kong-based Doki Technologies in April 2020 to further strengthen its presence in the kids’ smartwatches segment. New York-based American Exchange Group partnered with Japanese company Sanrio Co., Ltd to launch Hello Kitty smartwatches for kids.
China-based Borqs Technologies has been selected to provide kids’ smartwatches to a leading mobile operator in North America. Furthermore, leading APAC mobile network operators like Vodafone Australia and China Mobile have partnered with vendors to resell smartwatches for kids.
Prominent vendors like Huawei and Xiaomi have launched new products with features such as NFC payment and selfie camera primarily to target new buyers and entice existing users to upgrade. This will enable them to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 pandemic to some extent, as most of the manufacturing and supply chain remained standstill in H1-2020.
Chaurasiya concludes: “Privacy concerns still remain as these smartwatches collect a significant amount of personal data. Hence, vendors need to focus on this aspect to gain customer trust. However, latest features, value-chain alignments with telcos and new growth strategies are expected to keep the kids’ smartwatches segment in good stead in the region despite the COVID-19 induced market uncertainty.”