Wearables in the enterprise will rocket to 66 million annual units

If you’re wondering whether it’s worthwhile to jump into developing for wearables, think no more. A new report from Tractica finds that wearables in the enterprise and in industry is set to skyrocket to tens of million units shipped a year.

In 2015, the wearables market for enterprises and industry was essentially non-existent, with only 2.3 million units shipped, the report found. But sales will pick up steam in 2017. Beyond that, the sky is practically the limit. The report finds that by 2021, 66.4 million units will ship a year. By that year, a cumulative total of 171.9 million wearables will have been shipped for enterprises and industry.

Tractica Research Director Aditya Kaul explains, “In the past year, the enterprise and industrial wearables market has moved into an implementation phase, with the focus shifting from public announcements to the hard work that needs to be done behind the scenes to get wearables rolled out at commercial scale.”

Key Industries for Wearables

The primary markets for wearables will be retail, manufacturing, healthcare, corporate wellness, warehousing and logistics, workplace authentication and security, and field services, Kaul says. The Tractica report says that the most important wearable devices will be smart watches, fitness trackers, body sensors, and smart glasses.

Tractica isn’t alone in its findings. An APX Labs study, “What’s Next in Wearable Technology,” finds that the adoption of wearable technology in the enterprise will leap sixfold this year, after a solid 2015. The report claims that 93% of companies surveyed “are already using or actively evaluating wearable technologies.” And it adds “Enterprise deployments will rapidly grow from the dozens, to the thousands as wearables reach a greater level of maturity and market acceptance.”

Alpha Software’s Alpha WatchBench can help developers who are targeting the wearables market. It’s an iOS app for prototyping and testing custom Apple Watch applications. Read this case study about how one developer used Alpha WatchBench to build an Apple Watch app which evaluates speed skaters’ performances.

To read the Tractica report, click here.

To read the APX report, click here.

For more information about Alpha Software’s Alpha WatchBench, click here.