Are wearables truly this big? (The Apple Bounce)

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23 February 2015
Tom Scales
An interesting research paper was pointed out to me by a colleague today. In the report from Tractica, titled, Wearables Device Market Forecast (follow the link to learn more), the summary projects a growth from 17 million in 2013 to 187 million units in 2015. I am not doubting their research (and I admit, I only have access to the summary), as projections are based on many factors. I just don't believe it. Only 720,000 Androidwear watches were sold in 2014. They have glaring weaknesses, but some are not too bad (full disclosure: I wear an LG G Watch R). I guess the key question is whether the Apple brand can really drive an entire market -- one that they did not invent. Apple has been amazingly successful in so many markets. They revolutionized the market with the iPod, the iPhone and the iPad. Were they always first? No, a lot of products before. Were they always best? Again, no, superior devices have fallen. But Apple is, well, Apple and their power is indefinable. I just still can't get my head around 187 million, particularly now that Apple has backed away from so many of the 'really cool' features (see my prior blog post). OK, now that I have been a downer, I admit I want the market to explode. I like my watch, but don't love it. I want it to be smaller, lighter and have better battery life. I want to market to continue to innovate and nothing does that like competition and volume. I guess time will tell. I'll make a note to look back in 2016 and see what actually happened.

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