How the health wearable industry grows

The sector is still at an early stage, but according to estimates by Tractica, there will be an explosion in healthcare wearable devices: nearly 100 million units sold within 5 years. Among the latest products the patches that predict heart attacks

Published on 01 Jun 2016

According to a Tractica report, market intelligence company specialized in human-computer interaction, the market for health wearable is growing so fast that by 2021, the total number of wearable devices placed in the global market, will be 98 million units, up from 2.5 million today, and will be worth 17.8 billion dollars.

The healthcare sector is probably the main target when it comes to wearable, and includes different types of devices, from those more centered on fitness to those that relate to the monitoring of a patient suffering from particular diseases. The evolutionary ability of the wearable sector is very attractive as it intersects the evolutions of other technological fields, from the development of sensors, to the development of analytics; from the development of IoT platforms, to the development of new materials.

At the last CES in Las Vegas, we talked about here, we have extensively shown that it is not just of bracelets or watches: now there are also, for example, smart clothes, referring to all that clothing (especially dedicated to sports) equipped with sensors, ranging from bras to socks.

According to the report, the world of wearable although still at an early stage by now includes many categories: standard fitness tracker, intelligent patches, smart watches, wrist tools, tools for pain management devices for drug delivery, posture monitor, motion sensors, braces for the heart, smart shoes, etc.

The wearable devices are now considered as an extension of medicine and health protection, and in this respect is a very interesting market for industries such as pharmaceuticals which allows to expand the clinical studies, for insurance companies that can incentivize customers to a healthier life, for health professionals that can improve the delivery of health care to potential patients, providing them with access to their health data.

The wearable allow to overturn the relationship between people and health care system: Despite the focus on prevention is present, even today people go to the doctor when they are already sick. Many of the new wearable devices are born with the sole purpose of monitoring the physical condition of the person and give alert to the occurrence of certain circumstances: some time ago we talked about, for example, the sweat reader developed at Stanford University.

While Quartz magazine dedicated an article to a new range of patches that can predict heart attack: a company called VitalConnect, (that produced the patches) has also developed the platform to manage data safely, with the ultimate goal of representing a hub for the delivery of health services.

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