Wearables haven't been able to scale up to the mainstream, but there is an unusual trend seen among the owners of smartwatches, fitness trackers and VR glasses, which is worth considering before buying a new wearable this holiday season.
Wearables have a unique appeal to those who would like to stay ahead of the trend. But a Gartner survey has found that its users are more likely to stop using them after a while. According to the survey published on Wednesday, people usually get bored of using smartwatches and fitness trackers or break them, leading to abandonment rate of 29-30 percent.
After tracking responses from more than 9,500 consumers in Australia, the United Kingdom and the U.S. between June and August, Gartner learned that almost a third of smartwatch and fitness trackers are abandoned by their owners.
"Dropout from device usage is a serious problem for the industry," Angela McIntyre, Research Director at Gartner, said in a statement. "The abandonment rate is quite high relative to the usage rate. To offer a compelling enough value proposition, the uses for wearable devices need to be distinct from what smartphones typically provide. Wearables makers need to engage users with incentives and gamification."
According to the survey, smartwatch adoption is still niche at 10 percent, while fitness trackers have reached 19 percent. In the U.S., consumers have the highest usage rate at 12 percent while U.K. and Australia have 9 percent and 7 percent, respectively. Similarly, fitness tracker usage is at 23 percent in the U.S., followed by Australia and U.K. with 19 percent and 15 percent, respectively.
Based on the participants' responses, Gartner was able to conclude that the wearable devices are priced too high for their usefulness. But this gives an opportunity for startups to take advantage of the niche market by launching products that are effective at an affordable price.