Growth Of Wearbables Slows, But 102 Million Hitting Market This Year

The number of wearable devices hitting the market continues to rise but not by as much as earlier projected.

A new forecast projects that 102 million Internet-connected wearable devices will ship worldwide this year.

While this is an increase of 29% from a year ago, the projections are a decrease from only a few months back, when growth was projected at 38%.

By 2020, the number of wearables now expected to hit the market is 213 million, according to the latest quarterly wearable device tracker by the International Data Corporation (IDC), one of the most accurate of the IoT tracking firms.

This is a decrease from the last forecast in March, which expected 230 million units to be shipped.

The other interesting insight in the latest numbers relates to smartwatches.

While fitness trackers lead in market share this year, that won’t be the case by 2020, when watches take over. Here’s the picture of wearables hitting the market this year, by market share:

  • 51% -- Wrist bands
  • 42% -- Watches
  • 1% -- Clothing
  • .20 – Eyewear

Fitness trackers and smartwatches dominate the wearables market. That will still be the case by 2020, but the two leaders will trade places. Here’s the market share look by 2020, according to IDC:

  • 52% -- Watches
  • 29% -- Wrist bands
  • 9% – Eyewear
  • 7% -- Clothing

The watch stat may be a bit misleading. The reality is that not all smartwatches are the same.

Future growth may come from basic watches that provide some sort of fitness or sleep tracking while not being sophisticated enough to run third party apps on the watch itself, according to IDC.

But smartwatches still are expected to cost more than regular fitness trackers. Raymon Llamas, research manager for IDC’s wearables program, said that smartwatch prices will come down but not likely below $200 over the next four years.

No matter what the wearable is called, it still most likely to be worn on a person’s wrist.

And there will be a lot of them.


The MediaPost IoT Marketing Forum is being held Aug. 3 in New York. Check it out the agenda here

Next story loading loading..