Despite Microsoft’s Band and Band 2 being released to glowing praise from the media, the firm has yet to capitalise on its foothold in the wearable industry, leaving the Band to languish in near obscurity.
IDC’s wearable tracker released this week, featured the top 5 fitness wearable trackers which included companies like Xiaomi, Fitbit, and Apple, but no mention of Microsoft and their smart Band.
“Fitness is the low-hanging fruit for wearables,” said Jitesh Ubrani, senior research analyst for IDC Mobile Device Trackers. “However, the market is evolving and we’re starting to see consumers adopt new functionality, such as communication and mobile payments, while enterprises warm to wearables’ productivity potential.”
However, despite that it was noted that wearables, in general, were still an uncertain market. While the fitness wearables, in general, could find a market, established brands like Fitbit and Apple tend to swallow up the competition.
“Smart wearables, meanwhile, are still struggling to find their place in the market,” added Llamas. “There is plenty of curiosity about what smart wearables – particularly smartwatches – can do, but they have yet to convince users that they are a must-have item. The good news is that smart wearables are still in their initial stages and vendors are slowly making strides to improve them. But this also means that it will be a slow transition from basic wearables to smart wearables.”
It is worth noting that the market for all wearables is still small especially when compared to other devices like the phone market and tablet market, While the main issue discussed is that wearables are yet to convince users that they are a “must-have item”, perhaps the issue being danced around here is that wearables – fitness or otherwise just aren’t as useful as they set themselves up to be – especially with the prevalence of smartphones with similar functionality and even more.
Perhaps that is what prevents Microsoft from consolidating and iterating on their own wearable band rather than merely dabbling.