New data from the fully impartial price and product comparison site, PriceSpy, suggests Kiwis are very much behind the fast-moving world of wearable tech products.

According to historical click data from PriceSpy, the shopping category for smart watches has already increased in popularity in 2020, receiving almost 70 per cent (68 per cent) more clicks in January 2020 compared to January 2019*. Rather impressively, the shopping category of fitness watches also increased by almost 40 per cent (38 per cent) over the same period of time.

Not all wearable fitness gadgets however grew at the same rate, as the PriceSpy research found the shopping category for traditional activity trackers, which include products such as the Fitbit Charge 3 and Fitbit Inspire HR, dropped in clicks by almost a fifth (-19 per cent) year-on-year.

Suunto 7 - Smart Watch WearOS

Liisa Matinvesi-Bassett, New Zealand country manager for PriceSpy, says: “Our latest findings highlight just how much wearable fitness gadgets have taken off in New Zealand.

January is obviously one of the biggest times of the year that consumers look to invest in health and wellness products but compared to just one year ago, the percentage of shoppers clicking on smart watches in particular has grown phenomenally, increasing 68 per cent.”

Quick facts:

  • The wearable tech industry was reported worth nearly $23 billion in 2018 and this figure is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 19 per cent to reach $54 billion by 2023 (source: globaldata);
  • The number of connected wearable devices worldwide has more than doubled in the space of three years, increasing from 325 million in 2016 to 722 million in 2019. The number of devices is forecast to reach more than one billion by 2022 (source: Statista);
  • In 2023, it is projected that 131.6 million smartwatches will be shipped worldwide, up from 91.8 million units in 2019 (source: Statista).

Samsung Active 2 Smartwatch

Liisa continues: “Whilst popularity for wearable fitness gadgets continues to grow rapidly, our insights suggest not all products are as popular as others. For example, the percentage of clicks received for traditional activity trackers dropped by almost one fifth year year-on-year.

What’s particularly interesting about this is consumers appear to be clicking more on wearable fitness gadgets that have a considerably higher price point, suggesting shoppers are looking to invest in this market for the long run.”

In terms of leading wearables fitness gadget brands, our data shows Fitbit, Samsung and Apple were most popular with Kiwi shoppers in 2019, as well in 2020 so far. But it’s not just the usual tech companies that are putting their stake in the ground, as fashion designers such as Louis Vuitton are getting in on the action, selling wearable tech products costing up to $7300 NZD.”

Shopping category

YoY growth/decline (January 2020 vs January 2019)

Lowest price (from top ten most clicked products for 20 January 2020***)

Highest price (from top ten most clicked products for 20 January 2020***)

Smart watches

68 per cent

$219

$709

Fitness watches

38 per cent

$309

$1099

Activity trackers

-19 per cent

$59

$249

Liisa concludes: “For those who are in the market for a new wearable fitness gadget and are unsure what your money can buy, our key recommendation is to use a price and product comparison site or app, such as PriceSpy to do your buying research first.

Using such a site or app will help shoppers in more way than one. Firstly, they can make sure they are not paying over the odds for an item that may cost considerably less elsewhere. Secondly, consumers can compare the features of multiple wearable fitness gadgets in one place, so they can invest their money wisely and choose the best product that best suits their individual needs.”