Move over, Switzerland, Apple is now the world's largest watchmaker

Apple mentioned passingly that it noted a huge uptick in Watch wearable sales after the third version was introduced with cellular connectivity, but now analysts are fleshing out the numbers a bit more.

It turns out that Apple may have moved anywhere from 17.4-18 million smart timepieces last year, which is a 50% jump compared to 2016. Not only that, but almost half of those units may have been of the more expensive Apple Watch Series 3, while 13% opted for its top of the line LTE model. 

It would be an understatement to say that Apple had a banner Watch year. To put these numbers in perspective - the timepieces Apple moved in Q4 were more than what the entire Swiss watch industry shipped then, making Apple the world's largest watchmaker now, according to IDC research director Francisco Jeronimo. 

Apple lumps its Watch sales in the Other category of its record earnings report, and that group raked in more than $3 billion last quarter alone, so the push into smart wearables may very well pay off big time in the end.

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