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Disruptions in Watches and Wearables

  • ID: 5514954
  • Report
  • October 2021
  • Region: Global
  • 129 Pages
  • Policy2050
Watches Are Evolving into Lifestyle-Supporting Gadgetry.


  • Apple
  • Facebook
  • Hermès
  • LG Corporation
  • New Balance
  • Patek Philippe
This report covers the technological evolution of watches, as well as the consumer perceptions and ecommerce strategies that are reshaping the market.

There is potential for watches and smartwatches to continue to blur. As this happens, luxury brands, consumer electronics brands, and health technology brands might all be well-positioned to gain market share, though their marketing strategies will likely differ.

The successful introduction of luxury watch brands into the smartwatch category would also represent an infusion of additional capital, which could further advance R&D and better address the functionality expectations and lifestyle goals that act as purchase drivers.

However, the perceived and legitimate risk of technological obsolescence, or discontinued updates, in the smartwatch category is an obstacle to luxury positioning.

Even without a high-tech component, luxury is being redefined. Many D2C brands in apparel and accessories have advertised that their products are made in the same factories as established brands, with the implication being that the quality of the products or at least the production process is comparable but the price is lower.

This unique, approximately 26,000-word report is structured as follows:

  • Executive Summary: For the time-constrained executive, the most salient and actionable points from each section are included here.
  • Combining Tradition/Heritage with Modern Features: This thematic analysis probes the statements and activities of luxury watch brands. It addresses the need for the watch industry to continue to evolve, and the challenges in doing so.
  • Attention to Detail: This section opens with a comprehensive literature review of color psychology, exploring the relevance of color-related strategies to watch/smartwatch/wearable products, brands, and retail environments. These findings might also be useful for other types of product development and marketing. The analysis also considers the ways that product details now overlap with digital buyers’ journeys.
  • Chain of Command: This section explores the internal structures and incentives of watch brands, highlighting the potential benefits and drawbacks of different organizational approaches and stages of growth.
  • A Technologically Transformed Market: This section includes aggregated demand forecasting and consumer survey results. It examines the various health-related use cases, technological advancements, expanding digital ecosystems, emerging brands, and consumer needs that will likely act as growth drivers for this market. It also identifies potential challenges such as pandemic-related supply chain disruptions and economic impacts, regulatory responses, privacy concerns, variable insurance reimbursement rates, and criticisms from medical researchers.
  • This is followed by a thematic analysis of statements made by startup founders, identifying and explaining their disruptive ecommerce strategies in the watches category. In total, this technologically-focused section includes over 100 aggregated quantitative insights that readers could easily extract for their own research purposes.
  • Infographics: This report’s comprehensive overview of the competitive landscape in watches/smartwatches ends with several infographics that creatively communicate watches/smartwatches/wearables-related market research.

This report will provide comprehensive answers to the following key questions:

  • How are established luxury brands merging their sense of tradition with innovation, both internally through operational processes and externally through products?
  • What are the barriers to the luxury positioning of smartwatches?
  • How do product manufacturing details overlap with digital content, commerce, and the modern drivers of purchase decisions?
  • How should watch brands (and other manufacturers or marketers) think about color psychology?
  • How are newer watch brands differentiating their offerings with unconventional materials and designs?
  • What are the operational approaches and philosophies of luxury conglomerates?
  • What are the consumer perceptions of smartwatches/wearables, the most popular use cases, and functionality expectations?
  • What are some of the most promising high-growth opportunities in technologically-transformed watch categories?
  • Which tech companies are dominating new markets, and which companies have the potential to gain market share?
  • What are the key factors affecting market dynamics? What’s the role of underlying, and still developing, technologies such as sensors, AI, and biomanufacturing?
  • What are the most significant challenges, and under-utilized, high ROI strategies, in ecommerce for this category?
Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown


  • Apple
  • Facebook
  • Hermès
  • LG Corporation
  • New Balance
  • Patek Philippe
1. Introduction
1.1 Key Benefits of this Report
1.2 Target Audience
1.3 Companies Mentioned in this Report
1.4 Methodology

2. Executive Summary
2.1 Tradition/Heritage + Innovation
2.2 Attention to Detail
2.3 Chain of Command
2.4 A Technologically Transformed Market

3. Combining tradition/heritage with modern features
3.1 Zenith SA
3.2 Category reinvention
3.3 Technological obsolescence
3.4 Artificial scarcity
3.5 Industry perspectives
3.6 Key takeaways

4. Attention to Detail
4.1 Colors
4.1.1 Product/packaging color-related exaggerations
4.1.2 Colors in branding
4.1.3 Colors in retail (digital and brick-and-mortar)
4.1.4 Colors in watches, wearables, and related categories
4.2 Materials
4.3 Conflicts between utilitarian and stylistic details
4.4 Key takeaways

5. Chain of command: empowering brand/market-specific decision-making
5.1 Corporate philosophies
5.2 Adapting to different markets
5.3 Recruiting considerations
5.4 Remote collaborations
5.5 The digital era
5.6 Key takeaways

6. A Technologically Transformed Market
6.1 Watches market
6.2 Smartwatches market
6.3 Wearable devices market
6.4 Market leaders
6.4.1 Apple
6.4.2 Samsung
6.4.3 Facebook?
6.5 Wearable use cases
6.6 Watch faces of the future
6.7 Disruptive Strategies in Ecommerce
6.7.1 Crowdfunding and small batch manufacturing
6.7.2 Email marketing
6.7.3 Disruptive tactics: affiliate/acquired websites, retargeting, influencers, etc.
6.8 Key takeaways

7. Infographics
  • Infographic 1: Declines in Luxury Markets and Growth in Tech Markets / Estimates of Device Sales
  • Infographic 2: Wearables Assisting in Quality of Sleep / Consumer Appeal of Data Visualizations
  • Infographic 3: Generational Forecast of U.S. Wearable Adoption
  • Infographic 4: Wearable Device Shipment Volumes
Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown

A selection of companies mentioned in this report includes:

  • Zenith (LVMH)
  • Hublot (LVMH)
  • Hermès
  • The Swatch Group
  • Vacheron Constantin (Richemont)
  • Patek Philippe
  • Bugatti (Volkswagen Group)
  • Apple
  • Fitbit/Google
  • Samsung
  • LG Corporation
  • Rock Health
  • Facebook
  • Zymergen
  • Nike
  • New Balance
  • Gustafsson & Sjögren (GoS Watches)
  • Vincero
  • Linjer
  • Branzio Watches
Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown