When Will Wearables Take Off?

By Ken Steck - 2015-08-25

I recently sat on a wearables panel at Flash Memory Summit (FMS) where questions like “When are wearables going to take off?” and the proverbial “What will  the killer app be?” kept popping up. There’s a lot of media hype around wearables  considering the small size of the market today. According to a recent IDC report, 72.1 million wearable devices will be shipped in 2015, which is an increase of 173.3% from the 26.4 million units shipped in 2014. By 2019, IDC forecasts the wearables market to reach 155.7 million units shipped. Despite these modest figures, it’s the wearables vision that has everyone excited—and the support of an expert embedded memory solutions partner like Micron is a must for building out this vision.

Just Scratching the Surface

Flas Memory Summit  

The FMS panel members agreed: Our bodies have a lot of real estate left for wearable innovators to capitalize on. We’re just scratching the surface with the type of use cases and applications that we will see in the future.

The Secret to Success

While some wearable designs may be practical and others fashion-chic, the data that the wearables are collecting has the most value. Application developers that can convert this data into useful information that engages the user are most likely to help their companies achieve market success.

So, What Are We Waiting For?

Some of us may need a little more incentive to use a wearable device. Employers and insurance providers looking at new ways to improve employee wellness through wearable tracking seem to be offering just that. For example, Micron’s Wellness Program gives me financial incentive to wear my Fitbit and meet certain activity goals—like walking 10,000 steps per day. If I didn’t wear my Fitbit, I’d literally be throwing away free money. These types of incentive programs may be just the thing to get more users donning a wearable.

Ready With Wearable Memory and Storage Solutions

It’s still early days in the wearables market, and there’s a lot more innovation and creative ideas that will emerge before we really start to see how big this market is going to be and which devices and applications will be widely adopted. In the meantime, Micron is collaborating with startups and enterprises on storage requirements—like low power consumption and small form factors—for the latest wearable designs. From the wearable device, to the smartphone, to the cloud—we’re developing memory solutions at every step in the wearables ecosystem. Wearables are part of a much larger picture, and Micron is helping to enable that vision.


Ken Steck