It’s difficult to predict the future of a market still in its infancy like the wearable technology space. For research firms like Juniper Research (News - Alert), though, it still seems to be worth a try. Indeed, the company has weighed in on what it thinks the wearable technology space will look like in a few years.
Put simply, Juniper expects the future of wearable technology to be so bright, we’ll all have to wear Google (News - Alert)-produced shades as it expects worldwide spending on wearable devices to jump from $1.4 billion this year to $19 billion by 2018. According to Juniper analyst Nitin Bhas, this growth will largely be due to “heightened consumer awareness” of wearable tech.
This seems to agree with a recent research report from Swedish analyst firm Berg Insight, which expects compound annual growth for the wearable technology market to be 50.6 percent for the foreseeable future. This may seem a tad high, but it is backed by the fact that worldwide shipments of all wearable devices reached 3.1 million in 2011, but jumped to 8.3 million in 2012. Based on its projections, Berg expects that 64 million units of wearable device product will be moved in 2017.
Both Berg and Juniper also seem to agree that, while wearable fitness and activity trackers dominate wearable tech today, this will no longer be the case in the years to come as more consumer-oriented offerings like smartwatches will incorporate the functionality offered by dedicated fitness devices. Indeed, Juniper expects that “significant opportunities will arise for app developers” in such areas as “health, fitness, sports and communication.”
Meanwhile, there have been cases made that wearable tech may be a must-have for businesses and organizations. In particular, it seems that the law enforcement sector has much to gain from devices that record their actions while on the job.
Edited by Alisen Downey
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