The global True Wireless Stereo (TWS) hearables market shipments in 2021 grew 24 per cent in unit sales to reach 300 million and 25 per cent in terms of value, according to a new report.
The unit sales growth rate was slightly lower than the original forecast due to the Covid-19 pandemic impact throughout the year.
However, unit sales increased to around 300 million as new products entered the market with more features, like ANC (Active Noise Cancellation) and expanded play time, at affordable prices, said Counterpoint Research’s ‘TWS Hearables Market Tracker’.
In particular, smartphone original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) continued to focus on TWS products to expand their smart ecosystem, resulting in increased competition and sales in the market.
Market leader Apple saw a slight increase of 5 per cent (on-year) in its unit sales but its market share fell to 25.6 per cent.
Although the AirPods 3 was released later than expected, the AirPods 2 and AirPods Pro maintained high sales based on promotions throughout the year, the report showed.
Samsung saw a robust growth of 33 per cent (on-year) with its new models Galaxy Buds Pro and Galaxy Buds 2.
Among other brands, Skullcandy and boAt showed noticeable growth, as they became key players in major regions like North America, Europe and India.
The growth in the $50-$100 and $200+ segments was notable.
JBL and Xiaomi led the growth in the $50-$100 segment with their flagship models, while Skullcandy performed well with its models finding their way to the top 10 list of best-selling models.
Apple drove the growth in the $200+ segment with a 75 per cent share.
“The $50-$100 segment grew significantly YoY, as Xiaomi, which had focused on the sub-$50 segment, tried to expand its lineup to the $50-100 range,” said senior analyst Liz Lee.