Technology

What's Up With Apple: 100 Million Watch Wearers, $13 Billion in Subscriptions, Intel Takes on Mac

About 10% of iPhone users also wear Apple Inc.’s (NASDAQ: AAPL) smartwatch. That’s roughly 102 million Apple Watch users of some 1 billion global iPhone users. In the United States, about 35% of iPhone owners also own an Apple Watch.

The data was reported by Above Avalon’s Neil Cybart, who called the number of Apple Watch wearers “shockingly strong.” He continued, “Apple Watch turned Fitbit from a household name as the wearables industry leader into a company that will eventually be viewed as an asterisk when the wearables story is retold to future generations.” And Alphabet/Google paid $2.1 billion for Fitbit in a deal first announced in November 2019 and that closed only last month.

Apple Watch is on track to surpass the Mac’s installed base next year to become Apple’s third-largest device measured by its installed base. If plans to decouple the Watch from iPhone materialize, Apple Watch users could run to a total of some 350 million worldwide, according to Cybart.

Researchers at Sensor Tower reported Thursday that the global spending on the top 100 non-game, subscription-based apps totaled $13 billion in 2020, up by more than a third, year over year. U.S. consumers spent nearly $5.9 billion on the top 100 non-game mobile apps last year, up 26% compared to spending in 2019.

The top 10 subscription apps for consumer spending at Apple’s App Store were Alphabet’s YouTube, Tinder, Disney+, Pandora, Bumble, Hulu, HBO Max, YouTube Music, ESPN and Amazon Music. The top app across both iOS and Android was YouTube, which accounted for nearly $1 billion in gross revenue globally and $562 million in U.S. spending.

Sensor Tower’s analysts noted that between the first quarter of 2019 and the fourth quarter of 2020, U.S. consumers spent more on the top 100 subscription apps in each successive quarter. They noted, “Sequential growth like this, along with substantial gains by individual apps, are strong signals that we will see more publishers choose to adopt the subscription model in 2021 and beyond.”

We noted earlier this week that Intel has launched a campaign comparing its latest (11th generation) Tiger Lake processor to Apple’s new M1 chip. The benchmark testing the company ran to back up its claim was questioned by several outside observers, including Digits to Dollars, which was skeptical of Intel’s choice of benchmarks used to make the comparison.

Intel has doubled down, however, with a video touting the new Tiger Lake processor. Here’s the nine-minute video the company has posted on YouTube: