ABI Research’s latest report, “Body Area Networks for Sports and Healthcare,” predicts an explosion in the market for wearable sports and fitness activity sensors over the next few years as a new generation of devices collect and automatically share data online.
The report focuses on the development, current adoption, and potential for embedded wireless communication technologies within wearable fitness and medical sensors. These devices include heart-rate monitors, glucose measurement sensors, sleep monitors, activity sensors and more.
Nike, Adidas, and Motorola are just some of the companies to recently launch new wearable wireless products, such as Nike+, Adidas’ miCoach, and Motorola’s wireless keyboard or camera.
The increase isn’t just in sports and fitness activity markets. Strong growth will also take place in home monitoring applications for assisted living, remote patient care to help manage chronic conditions, and within hospitals and clinics. Over the next five years, the total market for wearable wireless devices in sports and healthcare will grow to 169.5 million devices in 2017, up from 20.77 million in 2011.
“Sports, fitness, and well-being applications will be the key engine of growth in the wearable wireless healthcare market as demand for a new wave of devices will be driven not just by growing consumer interest and awareness but also by increased competition and support for a raft of new applications,” said principal analyst Jonathan Collins.
Mobile handset accessory vendors, consumer electronics companies, fitness management service offerings, and online services providers will all join a market that has long been the preserve of specialist, high-end vendors such as Polar and Garmin.
“Leveraging mobile handsets to provide automated online data access opens up the wearable wireless market to real-time online connectivity. Although not the only option, standardization around Bluetooth Smart will be the bedrock of this market growth. A whole host of companies in the sports and medical device market, as well as online services companies, are going to have to add or extend their offerings and services to support a new wave of wearable sensor connectivity,” said Collins.
In related news, InvenSense, Inc., the leading provider of MotionTracking devices for consumer electronics, announced the availability of the MotionFit System Developers Kit (SDK) to accelerate design and commercialization of wearable sensor devices for the growing fitness and remote health monitoring markets.
Edited by Jennifer Russell