Tractica forecasts steady but slower-than-expected growth in wearables market

By Jeff Lagasse
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The wearables market continues to generate a lot of attention, both positive and negative. Fitness trackers and smartwatches remain the flag bearers of the wearable market, seeing growth but at a slower pace than has been estimated, according to a new report from Tractica.
 
Meanwhile, other wearable device categories such as body sensors continue to show strong promise, driven largely by wearable patches used in healthcare applications -- which, more broadly, are expected to drive much of the momentum in the overall wearables market.
 
Tractica forecasts that annual wearable device shipments will increase from 118 million units in 2016 to 430 million units by 2022, representing a compound annual growth rate of 24.1 percent. The market intelligence firm forecasts that, by the end of that period, smartwatches will have become the largest wearable device category, followed closely by fitness trackers and body sensors.
 
Other devices, according to Tractica, will also play a role in the growth of the market, including smart clothing, wearable cameras, smart glasses, smart headphones and other wearables.
 
“Healthcare and health-focused applications in general will be a major driver for the next phase of growth in wearables,” said research director Aditya Kaul in a statement. “Wearable device companies that pivot beyond fitness and activity tracking, toward preventing and managing chronic health conditions like diabetes and heart problems will succeed in the long run. Tractica believes that chronic health management, both in a professional healthcare setting, as well as a general consumer setting, will help wearables break into the mainstream.”
 
Tractica’s report, “Wearable Device Market Forecasts”, quantifies the market size and growth opportunity for wearable devices.
 
The market data includes device shipments and revenue segmented by world region, application market, and connectivity technology. The application markets covered in this study include consumer, enterprise, industrial, public safety, healthcare, sports and others.
 
The forecast period extends from 2016 through 2022. An executive summary of the report is available for free download on the firm’s website.