Juniper Research predicts retail revenue from smart wearable devices, including smart watches and glasses, will reach $19 billion by 2018 compared with $1.4 billion this year. Revenues will be driven by high price points for these devices coupled to their anticipated strong market demand.
Juniper Research revised upwards an earlier study on the adoption of devices, reflecting the latest announcements from vendors across the sector. Samsung recently announced the Galaxy Gear watch, while an Apple watch could happen Oct 22. Google could announce a Nexus watch, together with KitKat, on October 31st.
“This change in adoption levels can also be attributable to heightened consumer awareness of wearable technology and a better visibility of product adoption, especially in the smart watch segment”, added report author Nitin Bhas.
Sony announced today the U.S. availability of its SmartWatch 2, as well as Xperia Z Ultra and Xperia Z1 smartphones. The $200 SmartWatch 2 improves on its predecessor by including a larger screen, NFC technology for one-tap pairing with compatible devices, longer battery life and other enhancements.
Smartwatches are being developed by Acer, Apple, BlackBerry, Foxconn/Hon Hai, Google, LG, Microsoft, Qualcomm, Samsung, Sony, and Toshiba. Google Glass, has prompted some to consider how they might use wearable technology.
Subscription revenues will be possible for some devices.
Companies such as Fitbit and FiLIP are seeking to develop recurring revenues through premium services. FiLIP is an FCC approved app-based communication watch for children which combines GPS, Wi-Fi and cellular capabilities to keep parents and kids connected via two way voice calling, messaging and location functions.
Another study by GlobalData anticipates an increase in smart meter deployments, with module value jumping from $532m in 2012 to $1.3 billion in 2020. RF modules account for an 85% share of the North American market, says GlobalData.