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Smart Watches Far From Mainstream: Gartner

Stamford, Conn. – Smart watches may be media darlings right now, but a Gartner report states the devices will not have a major impact on holiday sales this year.

The research firm said the new wearable technology has not been able to truly create its own niche and are an unclear value proposition in the market and this will push consumers to spend their holiday dollars on tablets, fitness bands and other types of portable technology.

Annette Zimmermann, principal research analyst at Gartner, flatly said that the smart watches brought to market so far have been uninspired in design and there is a dearth of apps and features associated with these devices.

“As a result, Gartner predicts that wearable devices will remain a companion to mobile phones at least through 2017, with less than one percent of premium phone users opting to replace their phone with a combination of a wearable device and a tablet,” Zimmermann said.

On the bright side, Zimmerman pointed out that smart watches do have the potential to provide a convenience factor that should interest consumers, but so far this has not come to fruition. She cited the barrier to higher consumer acceptance being low interest, high price and poor designs.

“Users expect more than just more convenience from a new product category that claims to be innovative and priced at $200 to $300,” Zimmermann  said.