The global wearable computing devices market accounted for 181.5 million units in 2019, and it is expected to reach 520.1 million units by 2025, registering a CAGR of 19.9% over the forecast period (2020-2025). Wearable technology is one of the emerging trends that integrate electronics into daily activities. According to Cisco, 500 billion devices are anticipated to be connected to the internet by 2030. The Internet of Things is the network of these connected devices. Xiaomi launched its next-generation fitness tracker called the Mi Band 4 in 2019. It features nearly 40% more prominent display than its predecessor, where the gadget supports Xiao AI voice assistant that can be used to control Xiaomi's IoT or the internet of things products.
- Increasing technological advancements in the wearables market are driving the market. The wearable technology is quickly evolving into a significant technology segment, owing to the growing number of technological innovations by various major vendors. The hearable segment is witnessing a significant boost via innovations. For example, in January 2020, Nuheara announced its advanced hearing buds, the IQbuds MAX, which feature hybrid active noise cancellation and unique features for personalizing and enhancing the wearer’s soundscape.
- Further, Head-up displays, which find significant applications in the defense and military sector, are also extending to the consumer and enterprise segments, with the advent of AR and VR applications. For example, Light Field Lab recently raised USD 28 million in funding for innovating holographic display technologies for automotive and entertainment applications, which include HUD tech for smart glasses; the funding was led by Robert Bosch Venture Capital, Comcast, Liberty Global, and Khosla Ventures.
- Further, increase in health awareness among the consumers is driving the market. Owing to the growing trend of health consciousness amongst the global populous, medical features, such as heart rate fluctuation monitoring, ECG, pulse rate tracking, etc., are increasingly being embedded into smart wearables. Apple Watch Series 4 operated with Watch OS comes with FDA cleared electrocardiogram features. The device comes with three electrodes on the back of the watch, which feeds the input to Watch OS providing results in ECG.
- In addition, a survey by hospital executives from HIMSS and AT&T found that 47% of hospitals are providing wearables to patients with chronic diseases, and 47% are conducting remote monitoring via in-home medical devices and smartphone apps. The healthcare organizations see the telehealth potential and are convinced of its cost savings.
- However, with the recent outbreak of COVID-19, the global demand for electronics has slumped significantly during the first quarter of 2020. According to IPC's survey of electronics manufacturers and suppliers in February 2020, nearly 69% of the respondents have reported that they were told by their suppliers that there would be delays in the shipments due to COVID-19. However, some other types of wearable computing devices are seeing significant growth in terms of demand, which is supported by online sales. For example, the global demand for smartwatches increased significantly during the first quarter of 2020, with Apple continuing to hold a prominent share of the market. The added benefits of health tracking have enabled demand growth.
- Also, the government-deemed essential businesses during the outbreak are expected to adopt various wearable computing devices to enhance workplace safety to be operational under regulations. For instance, Avnet's Nodle M1 smart wearable is such a device that can be clipped employee's shirt or worn as a necklace to alert employees to maintain distance and buzzes to let them know when they are close to other employees.
Key Market Trends
Smart Clothing to Witness Significant Growth
- Smart clothing, such as smart vests, smart bras, smart shoes, smart socks, and smart tights, are considered in the study. These smart clothing have various potential applications, such as the ability to communicate with other devices, conduct energy, transform into other materials, and protect the wearer from environmental hazards. With the demand for technical textiles, the market is expected to cater to significant growth in the coming period.
- Recent advancements across semiconductor and microelectromechanical system (MEMS) domains attained a reduction in both size and cost. The Advanced Textiles Research Group (ATRG) is looking forward to incorporating these components into the yarn-making stage, broadening the scope of electronic textiles across temperature sensing, medical monitoring, motion sensing, energy harvesting, and illumination.
- Further, with an increase in the cases of chronic diseases globally, such as diabetes, cancer, respiratory disorders, and heart diseases, and growth in the number of surgeries performed in the key healthcare markets, such as the United States and Europe, the demand for smart fabric in the healthcare sector is expected to grow exponentially.
- Edema ApS is developing a washable stocking to monitor and measure changes in leg volume for patients suffering from edema in lower limbs. Similarly, in March 2020, Powercast and Liquid X ventured jointly to help manufacturers implement wearable sensors directly into garments. The offering further serves as a potential to monitor athletics and patients. The companies showcased a wireless rechargeable smart, athletic shirt, illuminated using printed electronics, with embedded power harvesting technology and LEDs, at the 2020 CES.
- Additionally, advancements in washable e-garments have been observed catering to market growth. For instance, back in August 2019, RMIT University developed a method for the manufacturing of waterproof e-textiles with laser technology. The university claimed that within just three minutes, the method could produce a 10x10 cm smart textile patch, which is waterproof, stretchable, and readily integrated with energy harvesting technologies. This technology is expected to drive the market with more products in the future period.
North America Accounts to Hold Significant Market Share
- North America is one of the largest markets for smart wearables, with the United States leading the market, followed by Canada. The increase in disposable income and the accelerated adoption and demand for new technological gadgets are some of the fundamental drivers for the market.
- According to Infopulse, over 80% of consumers are eager to wear fitness wearables, which indicates their concern regarding monitoring their health. Augmented demand will accelerate the development of personalized healthcare services, smart hospitals, remote healthcare, and IoT healthcare solutions.
- The market studied in the region is anticipated to witness growth with the increasing technological innovations in the healthcare sector. In 2019, the FDA authorized the first wearable for hospital use, an AI-powered solution by Current Health. This wearable device traces the patient’s health indicators with ICU-level accuracy and indicates threatening conditions. The device assists healthcare providers in identifying deteriorating states and offer them with the needed healthcare services sooner.
- Further, smart glass is another segment witnessing a considerable penetration of AR technologies in the region and is anticipated to grow significantly in the forecast period. For instance, in November 2019, Vuzix Corporation, a supplier of smart glasses and Augmented Reality technology and products has entered a reseller segment. It receives orders worth USD 7.1 million, representing 10,000 units of Vuzix Blade Smart Glasses.
- Furthermore, the increasing use of exoskeletons in the region is anticipated to aid the growth of the market studied in the region. Besides, the North American population is slowly aging, and during fiscal 2018, 16% of the US population were aged 65 years or above, and by 2050 this number is expected to reach one in five; Even Canada witnesses growth in senior citizens, as one in seven Canadians, was a senior in 2012, and this number is anticipated to be one in four by 2030. The growing older population is expected to influence the demand for rehabilitation robots positively.
- Also, the US defense has already commanded various exoskeleton projects, which can be altered in the future for various other purposes, including rehabilitation. For instance, in March 2019, Sarcos Robotics recently announced that it received a USSOCOM contract to deliver a pre-production version of Guardian XO full-body, autonomously powered exoskeleton. Such developments are expected to influence the wearable computing devices market in the region.
The wearable computing devices market is fragmented and highly competitive in nature. With the increasing awareness of fitness, these devices are witnessing demand in healthcare sectors. Further, its various other applications are creating huge market opportunities in developing regions due to the increase in purchasing power among the citizens. Also, many new players are entering this market, which caters to the intense rivalry. Key players are Fitbit, Inc, Apple, Inc, Adidas AG, etc. Recent developments in this market are:
- May 2020 - Garmin announced the quatix 6X Solar, the latest addition to its new marine GPS smartwatch series featuring a transparent solar charging display that uses the sun’s energy for extending the battery life. As the first Garmin marine-centric GPS smartwatch offering solar charging, the quatix 6X Solar combines all of the features of Garmin’s fēnix 6X Pro Solar with specialization in boating, fishing, cruising and sailing capabilities, so that users can spend more time on the water.
- January 2020 - Nuheara, the smart-hearing company, launched its IQbuds2 MAX earbuds. This product has a hybrid Active Noise Cancellation feature and unique features for personalizing and enhancing the wearer’s soundscape. Moreover, this product will allow users to fine-tune their sound environment.
Reasons to Purchase this report:
- The market estimate (ME) sheet in Excel format
- 3 months of analyst support