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Wearables remain a mystery. Pretty looking things, capable of doing everything and yet remain without a clearly defined purpose, terrible battery life, and dependent on mobiles to function fully.
In spite of their shortcomings, wearables are becoming popular with consumers. According to the latest forecast data by research house International Data Corporation (IDC), the worldwide wearables market will see some 45.7-million units shipped in 2015, thanks to a combination of new vendors, new devices, and greater end-user awareness.
“Smart wearables are about to take a major step forward with the launch of the Apple Watch this year,” said Ramon Llamas, Research Manager with IDC’s Wearables team. “The Apple Watch raises the profile of wearables in general and there are many vendors and devices that are eager to share the spotlight. Basic wearables, meanwhile, will not disappear. In fact, we anticipate continued growth here as many segments of the market seek out simple, single-use wearable devices.”
Vendors, according to IDC, will ship a total of 45.7-million units in 2015, up from the 19.6-million units shipped in 2014. Total shipment volumes are forecast to reach 126.1 million units by 2019, resulting in a five-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 45.1%.
The cause for the growth, IDC says is that there appears to be in 2015 an increase in wearables that run third-party apps. IDC notes that this include devices like the Apple Watch, Motorola’s Moto 360, and Samsung’s Gear watches.
The data is further split into smart wearables and basic wearables.
In 2015, the total volume of smart wearables will reach 25.7-million units in 2015, up from the 4.2-million units shipped in 2014.
In comparison, basic wearables, devices that do not run third-party applications, will grow from 15.4-million units in 2014 to 20-million units in 2015, resulting in 30.0% year-over-year growth.
The report also claims that “wrist-worn wearables, including bands, bracelets, and watches, will account for more than 80% of all wearable device shipments throughout the forecast.”
Image:Kārlis Dambrāns via Flickr.