What you need to know

In 2016, it is estimated that the Chinese market for smart wristbands will enjoy fast volume sales growth, while smartwatches are estimated to decline. The total smart wristband and smartwatch market is driven by sales of low-priced wristbands, while the lack of breakthrough products in smartwatches may be a drag factor.

The major purchase barriers for wearable devices are having functions that are ‘replaceable’ (ie their functionality can be replaced by smartphones) and price. On the other hand, health-related features are important purchase motivations. The capability to monitor the health and safety of family members is an especially appealing product feature that brands should promote in advertising.

Consumers are interested in virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) technology. VR and AR applications have been seen in various sectors, and companies and brands are only starting to explore the alternative reality field.

Products covered in this report

The term ‘wearable technology’ (also referred to as ‘wearable devices’ or ‘wearables’) in this Report refers to a category of technology devices that can be worn on the body, either as an accessory or as items of clothing.

Generally, wearables can perform some of the same computing tasks as smartphones and can connect to the Internet to enable data exchange. In addition, they have sensors and scanning functions to track physiological functions and enable biometrics and allow real-time access to this information.

As far as this Report is concerned, the definition encompasses smartwatches, smart wristbands, smart glasses or headsets, smart clothing and smart jewellery. Mintel’s market size estimates, however, only cover smart wristbands and smartwatches.

This report only covers the Chinese consumer market for wearable technology; business-to-business sales are excluded, and analysis refers only to trends in consumer markets unless specifically stated.

Demographic classifications

Personal income

‘High earners’ in this report are defined as those who have monthly personal income of RMB 8,000 or above.

‘Mid earners’ refers to those who have monthly personal income of RMB 5,000-7,999.

‘Low earners’ are defined as those with monthly personal income of RMB 4,999 or below.

Household income

Tier one cities Tier two and three cities
High monthly household income RMB 16,000 and above RMB 14,000 and above
Mid monthly household income RMB 10,000-15,999 RMB 7,000-13,999
Low monthly household income RMB 4,000-9,999 RMB 4,000-6,999
Back to top