Even with some skepticism over devices like the Apple Watch upcoming Microsoft Band, it appears that wearable tech sales are on the rise based on a report by eMarketer.
An estimated 39.5 million U.S. adults age 18 and over will use some form of wearable tech in this year alone, including both fitness tracking devices and smart watches. That’s almost 58 percent more than last year, which is likely spurred by the release of the Apple Watch last April.
Penetration is a bit on the lower end with these numbers, coming in at just 16 percent, but eMarketer estimates 81.7 million people will be using these devices by 2018, which is double the number reported for this year.
Wearable tech seems to be most popular with U.S. adults in the 25-44 age bracket, who mainly use them for data and fitness tracking. 25.1 percent of Internet users between 25 and 34 years-old will use wearable tech this year, followed by 23.1 percent of those in the 35-44 year-old group. These numbers will rise by nearly 50 percent among 25-34 year-olds, and 47 percent of those between the ages of 35-44 in 2018.
Furthermore, there will be adoption growth across all age groups by 2019.
- 18-24 will see an increase from 21.9 percent to 46.5 percent
- 25-34 will rise from 25.1 percent to 51.6 percent
- 35-44 will see a lift from 23.1 percent to 48.7 percent
- 45-54 will go from 17.1 percent to 33.3 percent
- Adults over the age of 65 see a slow but marked increase from 9.7 percent to 20.7 percent
Males and females alike seem to be getting into these devices, particularly FitBit fitness band. 19.3 percent of male Internet users will use one for this year, followed by 18.2 percent of females. 2017 is expected to look very different, with females dominating at 34.1 percent, while by males will be at 33.9percent.
Although some consumers may not see value in wearable devices at the moment, the fact that these devices can track fitness and health will likely make it more appealing. “The consensus among the experts we consulted was that advertising will not appear in volume on wearables until one or more of the devices attains significant market share, which makes sense considering scale is a critical aspect of digital advertising,” says eMarketer senior analyst Cathy Boyle.
The full report can be found here, while the elongated AdWeek infographic, which breaks down the wearable tech demographic numbers collected from the NPD Group Connected Intelligence can be seen below.