Wearables Market Forecasted to Reach $196.5 Billion by 2022



A new study finds that fitness/wellness wearables will dominate

There’s a good chance that, at present, you don’t sell any wearable devices in your store—just a handful of jewelry retailers do. But in 10 years, a jewelry store that doesn’t stock wearables could feel a little like a hamburger joint that doesn’t sell french fries. 

A new study by Grand View Research anticipates that the global wearable technology market will reach $196.5 billion by 2022, fueled by category development and investment by “a large number of industry players” over the forecast period. Statista recently forecasted the market to grow to $19 billion by 2018.

Other factors cited by the Grand View study set to contribute to growth include technological advancement (namely packaging tech into ever-smaller dimensions), lower prices, higher product quality, and better battery life—all of which will make wearables a more attractive buy for consumers. Increased smartphone usage, 3-D printing, and crowdfunding are also expected to fuel growth over the next seven years. 

It’s no surprise that devices targeting health and fitness will see major growth; that category will gobble up 33.6 percent of the total wearable pie by 2022. The study states that “increasing concern about fitness and health among urban population is anticipated to drive demand.” And when it comes to infotainment—that fertile mash-up of news/blog reading and TV/movie watching we all do everywhere—virtual reality solutions may soon be the norm. Google Glass may not have been a hit, but we’re betting huge virtual reality viewfinders that allow people to almost completely “check out” from reality will. 

More findings from the study:

  • “North America’s wearable technology market is…anticipated to grow at a compound annual growth (CAGR) of around 32 percent over the next seven years. Asia Pacific is expected to be a key component manufacturing hub over the forecast period, owing to availability of cheap resources. The region was valued over USD 3 billion in 2014, and is expected to grow at a CAGR of over 36 percent from 2015 to 2022.”

  • The categories biggest, most influential players include Apple, Adidas AG, Garmin, Fitbit, Nike, Google, Jawbone, Sony, Samsung, and Xiaomi. 

  • Industry players are increasingly forming collaborations for development in the wearables market. Example: Apple, Boeing, and the U.S. Department of Defense are coming together to develop wearable technology for defense purposes.

  • “The industry is expected to witness number of mergers and acquisitions by large companies looking to enhance their capability and product offerings.” Examples: in March 2014, Intel announced the acquisition of Basis, a wearable technology firm. In March 2015, Fitbit acquired Fitstar.

  • Behind fitness, the most popular categories in wearable devices are expected to be (from the largest): health care, enterprise/industrial, infotainment, and defense.

(Photo courtesy of Rebecca Minkoff)

JCK Magazine Editor