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Wearable Computing: Technologies, Applications and Global Markets

  • June 2016
  • 158 pages
  • BCC Research
Report ID: 2042684


Table of Contents

This BCC Research report evaluates recent technology developments, growth drivers, industry challenges and market trends in the global wearable computing market. Revenue forecasts are provided from 2015 through 2021.

Use this report to:
- Evaluate the wearable computing market, including recent technology developments, growth drivers, industry challenges and market trends.
- Identify the critical growth drivers for the various consumer and non-consumer market segments.
- Review the history and current state of wearable computing, and the types of products and devices available.
- Analyzing key industry players and the patent landscape.

- The global wearable computing market will grow from $16.9 billion in 2015 to $22.6 billion in 2016 and should reach more than $171.2 billion in 2021, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 50%.
- The consumer market should reach nearly $18.1 billion in 2016 and $104.7 billion in 2021, with a CAGR of 42.1% through 2021.
- The non-consumer market should reach nearly $4.5 billion by 2016 and $66.5 billion by 2021 with a CAGR of 71.6% through 2021.


Wearable computing devices are purported to be the next big thing in consumer technology products. Wearable or body-borne computers enable hands-free mobile
real-time data monitoring, logical calculation and network communication. Previously, wearable computing products, also known as wearables, were a fringe market of
curious devices that were bulky, unaesthetic and impractical for consumer applications. Traditional markets for wearable devices have been focused primarily on non-consumer niche applications, including those in the healthcare, defense/security, enterprise and industrial markets. However, recent advances in materials science,
electronics, photonics and software have enabled the emergence of a potentially vast range of new lightweight, wearable computing products. These technology advances
are not only growing traditional non-consumer markets but also enabling the emergence of a number of new consumer applications.

Wearable computing devices have potential benefits for any environment where information or communication is desired and the use of a hands-free interface is considered beneficial or essential. In addition to consumer products, many industry-specific applications in markets such as defense, healthcare, manufacturing and mining are also emerging. The potential for wearables to transform many global consumer and non-consumer markets in previously unimaginable ways is now very real.

This report is an update of an earlier BCC Research market report published in 2014. The goal of this updated market report is to evaluate recent technology developments,
growth drivers, industry challenges and market trends in the global wearable computing market. Identifying the critical growth drivers for the various consumer and non-consumer market segments is a primary aim. For greater market clarity, the report develops accurate revenue forecasts for the global market from 2015 through 2021.
Analyzing key industry players and the patent landscape are additional goals. The primary objective of this systematic research is to quantify the projected impact of
both internal and external forces that affect the wearable computing industry today and will affect the industry for the next several years.

The wearable computing market is evolving rapidly. Wearables are not only being integrated with smartphone technology but may also ultimately replace them in many
consumer environments. The key players in the smartphone industry will also play crucial roles in the consumer wearables market. Other applications will attract interest
and investment from non-smartphone industries such as fashion, gaming, healthcare, manufacturing, security and logistics. The potential for wide-range disruption and
change across multiple industries make it pertinent to comment on recent market and technological trends in wearable computing and to assess potential breakthroughs and
market developments in the near future.

The scope of this report is broad and covers several product areas and market segments. Global market trends are analyzed with global market revenue data from 2015, estimates for 2016, and projections of market developments through 2021. The report discusses recent technological advances in materials sciences, electronics, photonics and software that are enabling a potentially vast range of new lightweight wearable computing products to emerge.

The history and current state of the wearable computing market is reviewed and the types of devices available are discussed. An analysis of the industry structure, including major companies and their market shares and the major markets and their drivers is presented. This includes an examination of consumer markets (i.e., wearable cameras, sports and activity trackers, smart clothing and textiles, smart glasses, smartwatches, entertainment and gaming) and non-consumer markets (i.e., healthcare, defense, security, enterprise, industrial, warehouse and logistics). Potential future industry developments are discussed and the future evolution of the technology is predicted. Patent evaluation, including coverage of the current state of technology, new patent applications and newly issued patents is also included.

The intended audience for this report includes developers, manufacturers, providers, suppliers, users, customers, commentators, analysts and investors of the following
products, markets and industries:
- Wearable computing devices and accessories.
- Smartphones, tablets and personal computers.
- Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) platforms.
- Semiconductors and micro-computer components.
- Photonics and optical components.
- Mobile and wireless communications devices.
- Sports clothing, fashion clothing and general apparel.
- Sports, fitness and exercise equipment.
- Healthcare industry, including remote health monitoring.
- Elderly-care, patient-care and child-care industries.
- Military and security systems and equipment.
- Aerospace and defense contractors.
- Mobile enterprise and retail management.
- Multimedia marketing and gaming industries.
- Mobile wireless network operators.
- Cloud services, big-data services and internet service providers.
- Software application developers for mobile platforms and smartphones.
- Computer game and software simulation developers.
- Multimedia and video content developers.
- Consumer electronics merchandisers and vendors.

Both primary and secondary research sources were used in preparing this study. Primary information sources were obtained from key contacts at leading market players as well as end users. Secondary information sources included both printed publications and online resources. These sources include previously published market research reports, corporate documents, technology white papers, public company disclosure statements, press releases, patent documents and assorted industry reference sources.

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