The burgeoning wearable electronics market would likely not exist if it weren’t for wearable sensors. The global wearable sensors market was valued at $70 million in 2014, and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 45.2% from 2014 to 2020, according to a recent report.
Wearable sensors are one of the most important components of wearable technologies, researchers agree. Wearable sensors are embedded into wide range of wearable devices enabling them with various sensing functions including image sensing, pressure sensing, motion sensing and temperature sensing among others. They are incorporated in wearable devices which can be categorized into: wrist wear, body wear, eye wear and foot wear among others. In addition to more serious applications – such as wearable medical devices – sensors are being integrated into more whimsical applications such as the smart bra:
The electronic bra exists. When true love is detected, the bra unhooks automatically from the front to help save women from one-night stands with less-than-savory men. The bra contains a heart-rate sensor. The app calculates the "true love rate," comparing the readings to activities like shopping, watching a horror movie, flirting, jogging, or receiving a surprise gift.
In 2014, North America led the wearable sensors market and the region is expected to maintain its dominance throughout the forecast period. The adoption of wearable devices which includes, smart watches, fitness bands and wearable medical monitoring devices among others is leading to the growth of wearable sensors market in the region.
Europe followed North America accounting for more than 38% of the global market revenue share. Asia pacific (APAC) and RoW are analyzed as niche markets for wearable sensors during the forecast period but are expected to grow significantly during the forecast period.
For the electronics supply chain, the explosion in sensor applications is good news. Sensor technology has been around a long time and continues to evolve with formerly discrete sensors being integrated onto a single hybrid device. The global wearable sensors market by sensor types is categorized into motion sensors, pressure sensors, temperature sensors, image sensors, position sensors, medical based sensors and others. The motion sensors had the highest market revenue share in 2014 and are expected to continue its dominance during the forecast period.
Motion sensors find its applications in wide range of wearable devices but mainly include smart watches and fitness bands. Motion sensors are used to enable wearable devices with functionalities including accelerometer, gyroscope and magnetic sensors. Further medical based sensors which include pulse and temperature sensors are expected to grow significantly during the forecast period due to increasing adoption of sensors in wearable medical devices.
Wrist wear has the highest market revenue share contributing more than 46% of the global market followed by foot wear. Wrist wear wearable devices mainly include smart watches and fitness band. Various multinational giants like Microsoft, Apple and Nike among others are entering into the wearable wrist wear device market, leading to the growth of this application segment. In addition, body wear segment is analyzed to be the fastest growing application segment for wearable sensors.
Additional information is available at "Wearable Sensor Market - Global Industry Analysis, Size, Share, Growth, Trends and Forecast, 2014 – 2020."