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Gartner: Wearable devices sales to grow by 18.4% in 2016

Gartner: Wearable devices sales to grow by 18.4% in 2016

No less that 274.6 million wearable electronic devices will be sold worldwide in 2016, an increase of 18.4 percent from 232.0 million units in 2015, a new report by technology market research company, Gartner, has shown

Gartner’s forecast reveals that sales of wearable electronic devices will generate revenue of $28.7 billion in 2016, in which  $11.5 billion will be from smartwatches.

According to Angela McIntyre, Gartner’s research director, smart tick-tockers have the greatest revenue potential among wearables, but their adoption will remain “much below” smartphone sales.
Giving an example, McIntyre says more than 374 million smartphones will sell in mature markets and “large urban areas” of emerging ones, making for a near 100 million units sales gap.

Looking forward, smartwatches will have stronger appeal with consumers, as they are multi-functional and aesthetically pleasing devices that can also track exercise to an acceptable degree.

 At the same time, fitness wearables (wristbands, garments, chest straps, sports watches, etc.) continue to gain popularity, driven in part by wellness programs in the US.

Wristband makers are experimenting on their way towards competing with smartwatches, creating value propositions for wristbands beyond fitness, such as mobile payments, safety, and health.

The Samsung Gears2
The Samsung Gears2

Taking an early look towards the emerging virtual reality market, Gartner research director Brian Blau claims that head-mounted displays (HMD) will make strides toward mainstream adoption this year,

He expects film producers and sports leagues will explore the opportunity to augment their traditional output with interactive attractions, movies, and events allowed by HMDs. Moreover, HMDs designed for enterprise will be purchased by businesses for tasks such as equipment repair, inspections, maintenance, and hands-free instructions and controls.
Forecast for Wearable Devices Worldwide (Millions of Units)

Device 2015 2016
Smartwatch 30.32 50.4
Head-mounted display 0.14 1.43
Body-worn camera 0.05 0.17
Bluetooth headset 116.32 128.5
Wristband 30.15 34.97
Smart garment 0.06 1.01
Chest strap 12.88 13.02
Sports watch 21.02 23.98
Other fitness monitors 21.07 21.11
Total: 232.01 274.59


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Kolade Akinola Technology Journalist at Technology Times Mobile: + 234 (0) 807 401 6027