A new report by Juniper Research has found that fitness wearables in-use will almost treble by 2018, compared to an estimated 19 million in-use devices this year. Juniper expects fitness to remain the dominant wearables segment until that time, driven by intuitive use cases and lower retail prices.
Despite major GPS fitness device OEMs announcing new fitness products at CES 2014, it looks like an increasingly difficult battle between smart devices and wearables. Garmin launched its Vivofit fitness band and Vivoki/Vivahub corporate wellness solution. Magallen is one of the few companies in the GPS device OEM space that continues to show flashes of innovation, opening up its Echo watch platform to a range of third party smartphone application developers.
Despite the continued decline of PNDs, and the threat of smartphones, smart watches and eyewear, the portable GPS-enabled device market is forecast to continue to hold its own thanks to dedicated HUD/eyewear, cycling and health/tracking devices.
Whether the Apple smart watch rumor is true or not, the GPS fitness watch market is set to reach $1.07 billion in 2013, according to ABI Research’s latest quarterly “GPS & GNSS” Market Data which forecasts fitness watches split by price tier.