5-year enterprise wearables market seen reaching $18 billion

Like any digital device supporting the enterprise, wearables will need to be secured and managed, notes ABI Research.

May 15th, 2014

Growing at a CAGR value of 56.1% over the next five years, wearable device technologies will become an integral part of enterprise mobile enablement strategies, predicts ABI Research.

“There are cases being made for wearables in the enterprise despite the relative newness of the technology," states Jason McNicol, senior enterprise analyst with ABI Research. "However, which wearables are primed for enterprise usage and adoption is a more important question. Wearable technology such as smart glasses and those used for healthcare are better suited for the enterprise as corporate-liable devices. Smart watches, on the other hand, will most likely follow the trend of BYOD into the enterprise.”

ABI Research has identified six kinds of wearable devices: smart glasses, cameras, smart watches, healthcare, sports and activity trackers, and 3D motion trackers. Healthcare wearables, smart glasses, and smart watches will be the dominant form-factors purchased by the enterprise and used by employees, projects the firm.

Related: IEEE standardizes wireless 'body area networking'

McNicol continues, “Companies like Vuzix, in partnership with SAP, and Google Glass Explorers are testing the boundaries and capabilities of smart glass technologies for the enterprise. Smart watch OEMs Samsung, LG, Sony, and Google are also trying to position their products for the enterprise. Lastly, healthcare OEMs FitLinxx, BodyMedia, and FitBit are getting involved through corporate wellness programs. Once these companies convince enterprise customers of the added value from wearables, the market will see incredible growth.”

The firm forecasts that, as expected, the North American region will be the largest and grow at a CAGR value of 39% over the next five years. More interestingly, ABI expects the Asia-Pacific region will become the second largest market for enterprise wearable technology, outpacing Europe by 2019 with a CAGR of 90%.

“Like any digital device supporting the enterprise, wearables will need to be secured and managed," notes ABI practice director Dan Shey. "Wearable use cases in field services, maintenance, training, etc., highlight the need for enterprise mobility management providers, mobile operators, enterprise application and platform vendors, system integrators, device OEMs and other enterprise mobile suppliers to add services to support wearables. Enterprise connectivity continues at a rapid pace and its benefits are only achieved when end-to-end solutions -- including security and management services -- support the devices and connections.”

Learn more about the report.

See also: M2M and Internet of Things talk examines technologies' business use, benefits

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