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Apple Watch reaches 7 million sales, but will miss ambitious analyst predictions

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The Apple Watch reached 7 million sales this month, smaller than the 8.5 million sales Strategy Analytics reported in the same time period. The Apple Watch is still selling across the world, though not as fast as once expected.

Analytics firm Canalys published the numbers, claiming Apple is the only vendor in the third quarter to sell over 300,000 smartwatch units. The Pebble Time noticed 200,000 sales, and Samsung dropped as customers await the launch of the Gear S2.

The numbers are lower than analyst predictions before the launch of the Apple Watch. Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty said the Apple Watch would reach 30 million sales in the first year, an extremely optimistic prediction. KGI Securities analyst Ming Chi-Kuo was closer to the money, predicting 15 million sales in the first year.

“After experiencing significant supply chain constraints early on, Apple managed to overcome its production struggles with the Apple Watch and is building momentum going into [the fourth quarter],” said Analyst Daniel Matte.

Apple will have more competition in the fourth quarter, with Samsung launching the Gear S2 worldwide, TAG Heuer launching its own smartwatch, and Fossil will also launch a range of wearables and smartwatches into the market.

In the past, Apple has said it is not competing with traditional watchmakers, but now those brands have entered the smartwatch market. That might force Apple to change its tune, to fend off new high-end competitors.

The update to the Apple Watch at the September event might draw in more customers, with new bands, colors, and native applications. Some customers might be waiting for the Apple Watch 2, which may arrive in 2016.

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