Motorola is pulling the plug on its smartwatches
Motorola appears to be temporarily calling time on its smartwatch business as expectations around Android Wear devices haven’t been quite as high as once thought.
Speaking to The Verge, Motorola’s corporate vice president of wearables and product development, Shakil Barkat, explained that Motorola doesn’t “see enough pull in the market to put a [smartwatch] out at this time.” This isn’t the be-all, end-all of Motorola’s rather fantastic Moto 360 range of smartwatches, but it is a sign that the company is going to wait for wearable technology to improve before it wades in to update its hardware.
“Wearables do not have broad enough appeal for us to continue to build on it year after year,” Barkat explained.
The wearables market, specifically smartwatches, have had a difficult time since many devices started appearing in 2014. Google’s potential Android Wear saviour, Android Wear 2 has been delayed until 2017 – providing little reason for many manufacturers to bother launching watches ahead of the update.
Sales of smartwatches have also been down, while Apple still manages to hold the majority of the meagre smartwatch market with its various Apple Watch wearables. Garmin has also managed to crush it this year with a record number of smartwatches sold. Still, while that’s impressive, the International Data Corporation reports that smartwatch shipments have dropped by 51.6% year on year.
With all that information, it’s not really that much of a surprise that Motorola feel the need to leave the market. It’ll be interesting to see if the likes of LG, Samsung and Asus also decide it’s time to pull the plug on smartwatches.