Black Friday has become one of the biggest days of the year for tech and gadget shopping in South Africa. This is according to Annette Zimmermann, research vice-president at Gartner, who shared her insights on what will the most coveted devices for this holiday season.
“Brands and retailers will offer an array of great deals on electronic devices,” said Zimmerman.
“Those that we expect to lure consumers the most will be headphones, tablets, fitness bands, smartphones and TVs. We also expect smartwatches, VPA-enabled speakers and smart headphones to fuel demand.”
Below are the three items on top of every tech shopping list according to Gartner’s data.
“Some users have held back on purchasing an Apple Watch until now as the use case has not seemed compelling enough.
“However, with its cellular connectivity, the Apple Watch Series 3 offers new use cases, such as music streaming during a workout at the gym, or leaving your iPhone at home, that will inevitably spur demand and boost sales on Black Friday and this holiday season,” she said.
Gartner said that it expects 41.5-million smartwatches to be sold in 2017, with the Apple Watch remaining the most popular option among other offerings from Huawei, LG, Samsung and Lenovo .
Google Home and other VPA-enabled speakers
“If we look at the VPA-enabled speaker and smart headphone markets, vendors have lately made important additions to their product portfolios,” said Zimmerman.
“Google, for example, has recently ramped up its hardware portfolio with the Pixel Buds and the more affordable Google Home Mini, which is competing with Amazon’s Echo Dot.
“We expect these two markets to develop rapidly over the next two to three years in terms of volume as well technology advancements,” she said.
According to Gartner’s latest forecast, the Bluetooth headset market is expected to reach 150 million units globally in 2017.
Sales of VPA-enabled speakers will grow to 11.8-million units in 2017.
Smartphones will remain a highly coveted holiday gift, said Zimmerman.
Gartner expects sales of smartphones to total 1.57 billion units in 2017, up 4.9% from 2016.
“Huawei continues to grow its presence in Europe with 11.9%market share in the third quarter of 2017, up from 10.2% year over year, a solid third place after Samsung and Apple.
“Huawei holds onto the No. 3 position by setting itself aside from the rest of the Android crowd, taking advantage of troubled vendors such as HTC and Sony,” said Zimmerman.