Android Wear devices sold just 720,000 in 2014

Android Wear smartwatches like the Moto 360 and LG G Watch R shipped a grand total of 720,000 units in 2014, according to figures published on Wednesday.

Research firm Canalys says that less than three-quarters of a million devices, of the 4.6m ‘smart wearables’ sold in 2014 were running Google’s wrist-laden platform, with more consumers preferring the less expensive Pebble device.

According to the report the poorly-reviewed Moto 360 topped the pile for Android Wear but was restricted by low stock supplies, while LG’s G Watch R was more popular than the G Watch.

The first generation Android Wear watches from Asus, Sony and Samsung also struggled to engage consumers in the run up to Christmas. However, Samsung, with its range of six wearable devices launched in just 14 months, still led the way in terms of overall sales.

The apparent lack of interest in Android Wear devices may worry Google ahead of the Apple Watch launch coming in April in the United States.

Read more: Apple Watch vs Android Wear

The iOS-based device promises to pick up a huge segment of the wearable market right out of the gate, with many consumers waiting for Apple’s entry before diving in.

“Apple made the right decisions with its WatchKit software development kit to maximise battery life for the platform, and the Apple Watch will offer leading energy efficiency,” said Canalys Analyst Daniel Matte.

“Android Wear will need to improve significantly in the future, and we believe it will do so.”

Outside of the ‘smart wearables’ market, which Canalys describes as multi-purpose devices capable of running third-party apps, the research firm also pointed out some success stories in the basic wearable sector.

Chinese firm Xiaomi’s Mi Band fitness tracker racked up over a million sales, including 103,000 on the first day, while Fitbit remained on top of the global market.

How do you think Android Wear needs to improve to engage customers? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.