265 Million Wireless Personal Area Devices in 2018
Highly integrated, low power wireless chips are enabling a new generation of personal area sensors such as wearables, according to recently published research by ON World. Within the next five years, the majority of wearables will include multiple MEMS sensors and multiple radio frequency technologies such as Bluetooth Smart, WiFi, ZigBee and ANT.
San Diego, CA August 28, 2014—Highly integrated, low power wireless chips are enabling a new generation of mobile personal area sensors, according to global technology research firm ON World.
“Mobile sensing is quickly becoming a mass market meme,” says Mareca Hatler, ON World’s research director. “Wearables are the largest and fastest growing segment with the most growth coming from general purpose smart devices that integrate multiple sensors as well as multiple communications capabilities.”
The wearables market has accelerated over the past two years. From an analysis of 70,000 mobile sensing wearables product reviews, ON World found that smartwatches have increased by a factor of 8 and other personal sensors including jewelry, pet/child trackers and proximity monitors increased 4X in 2013 compared with 2012.
ON World’s recently completed survey with 1,000 U.S. online consumers found that smartwatches are the most likely wearable technology product, preferred by 42% of likely adopters. Sixty percent of the likely adopters want to use their wearable tech product for health or fitness.
Price will be the deciding factor for many consumers. ON World’s survey found that 23% would be willing to pay $149 or more for a smartwatch that had integrated blood pressure, heart rate and activity tracking sensors and 8% are willing to spend over $299. Multi-radio combination chips, such as those offered by Broadcom, GainSpan and TI, are a growing trend that reduce the bill of materials (BOM) by up to 25 percent.
Multi-protocol chipsets for wearables are already fairly widespread such as Nordic Semiconductor’s dual-protocol system-on-a-chip (SoC) that supports ANT+, Bluetooth Smart and proprietary network stacks.
In 2018, global annual sales for wireless personal area devices will reach 265 million with the majority of these featuring multiple sensors as well as multiple radio frequency technologies. Bluetooth Smart will be the largest market for these applications over the next five years but the growth of highly integrated, multi-communication chips will result in WiFi increasing the fastest.
ON World recently published Mobile Sensing Set includes four reports on mobile sensing products, chipsets, apps and services including a recently completed survey on wearable technologies with 1,000+ consumers.
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