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Wearables boost sensor demand

1 min read

Shipments of sensors used in wearable devices llike the Apple Watch will rise by a factor of seven over the coming years, IHS predicts.

In fact, the market research firm says shipments of sensors will climb much more quickly than those for wearable devices themselves. This is largely because of increased consumer demand for fitness and health monitoring features, as well as improved user interfaces. Jérémie Bouchaud, director and senior principal analyst at IHS Technology, said: "Wearables are a hotbed for sensors, with market growth driven by the increasing number of these components in each product sold. "The main factor propelling this phenomenon is a transition in market share away from simple products like pedometers and toward more sophisticated multipurpose devices such as smartwatches and smartglasses." IHS believes the worldwide market for sensors in wearables will expand to 466million units in 2019, up from 67m in 2013. The average wearable device shipped in 2019 is expected to incorporate 4.1 sensor elements, up from 1.4 in 2013. Shipments of sensors for smartwatches like the Apple Watch – which includes an accelerometer, gyroscope, microphone and a pulse sensor – are expected to drive demand considerably. "Similar to the iPhone and iPad, we expect the Apple Watch will set a de facto standard for sensor specifications in smartwatches," Bouchaud continued. "Most other wearable OEMs will follow Apple's lead in using these four devices – or will add even more sensors to differentiate."