Wearable Devices Changing M2M Landscape

It can be argued the one constant in technology is change. In less than a decade, we’ve seen the emergence of the smartphone, the tablet, and most recently, the wearable device. Many consumers are gradually seeing more and more connected wearables like smart watches and fitness monitors emerge in the marketplace. At this point, the question must be asked: Are wearables the next great evolution of M2M?

A new report from iGR, www.igr-inc.com, projects that between 2012 and 2017, the sales of wearable fitness and healthcare devices will grow at a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 48.5%. Meanwhile, smart watch sales are expected to grow at a CAGR of almost 195%. The report even suggests that wearable devices may in time make smartphones passé.

“Although smartphones’ convenient display of time has made standard watches obsolete for many young consumers, the instantaneous information provided by smart watches and fitness wearable devices may once again make wearing a device on the wrist a commonplace occurrence,” says Iain Gillott, president and founder of iGR.

Wearable devices may also open the proverbial door for flexible displays, i.e. display screens that are bendable, on devices. A new report from ABI Research, www.abiresearch.com, projects the majority of digital smart watches, as well as health and fitness devices will incorporate a flexible display throughout the next 18 months due to the robust and rugged characteristics such displays bring to products. The report points to the flexible display technology created by Samsung, www.samsung.com, as an example.

In the coming years, flexibly displays may offer smart watches a distinct advantage over other mobile devices. ABI analyst Joshua Flood notes the technology isn’t likely to catch on for smartphones and tablets, as there is a question of how useful such technology would be on those devices.

Whether or not wearable technologies are indeed the next evolution of M2M, many would agree there’s a definite cool factor about them. Consumers looking to catch up on some of the hottest connected wearables for the holiday season would be remiss if they didn’t check out the December issue of Connected World magazine, as editors spotlight some of the coolest fitness devices, smart watches, and other wearables on the market.

Want to tweet about this article? Use the hashtags #M2M, #wearabledevices.

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Connected World Issue
June/July 2014
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