It says growth will be fuelled by a combination of factors including innovation from local startups, high levels of activity in mergers and acquisitions and competition amongst global players such as Google and Apple as each attempts to dominate the market for the Internet of Things in Australia.
In 2014, the consumer wearables segment accounted for 99 percent of total wearables revenues, according to F&S. It expects demand to increase over the next five years and the consumer segment to account for a substantial part of overall revenues over the forecast period.
Enterprise wearable use ”minimal”
Audrey William, head of ICT research for Frost & Sullivan ANZ, said there had to date been minimal use of wearable technology for business applications. “In the enterprise (business) segment, most wearable technologies are currently at the prototype stage. However, Frost & Sullivan expects significant enterprise adoption of wearable technology from around 2017 as several companies, especially in the mining and oil & gas industries are already looking to trial wearable products.”
F&S is tipping advances and innovations in software to allow businesses to harness and leverage wearable technologies beyond the current capability of wearable devices. “For instance, new wearable technology sensors embedded within smart shirt/vests can enhance worker safety and safer working environments for field technicians in mines by recording and analysing data on temperature, air quality and gaseous leaks,” it says. “Ultimately, wearable technologies have the potential to impact every industry in Australia, including mining, oil & gas, engineering, healthcare, education, manufacturing, logistics and leisure & entertainment.”
Aussie startups ripe for acquisition
F&S says several Australian technology start-ups have already joined the wearables innovation foray, launching products like smart shirts, smart wristbands and smart bands for health monitoring and fitness tracking. It names some of these as being Catapult Sports, Ollo Wearables, Smash Wearables, Wearable Experiments and MJ Bale and says they offer fresh innovation and expansion options via acquisitions for the bigger, established players in the market. F&S expects mergers and acquisitions and cross industry collaboration to be a key feature to drive the next level of innovation in the wearable technologies market.