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Why the Apple Watch points to big trouble for Garmin

The Apple Watch isn’t launching until April 24, but it’s already putting some of Apple’s competition on notice.

Garmin, which makes GPS-equipped fitness watches among other devices, is likely to suffer in the face of increased competition from Apple and other companies now making smartwatches, analysts at Citi said in a note published Monday, Business Insider reports. The note comes despite the lack of internal GPS in the Apple Watch — for now, the device relies on the GPS in an iPhone that it’s been paired with for location functions.

The note says that “the Apple Watch is a very modest threat this year as current interest in the running community appears low, but Apple’s product positioning, the likely addition of GPS and likely lower price points in future versions are significant long-term headwinds.”

Citi did some consumer research too, BI notes. The bank surveyed a number of runners in New York and found that the Apple Watch’s high price point and lack of internal GPS were the main reasons athletes might stay away from the new wearable at first.

Out of all this, Citi moved its rating for Garmin to sell and put a price target at $42. Shares of Garmin are already down 16% in the last year.

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