by Ewan Spence
Britain is falling in love with wearable technology. Recent numbers from YouGov show the increasing adoption of personal tech in the country. Currently six percent of the UK population (roughly 2.8 million people) have some form of wearable device, be it a smartwatch, fitness band, or activity tracker. That number is set to more than double to 6.1 million (13% of the population) during 2015.
Of course there’s going to be a big spike next year when the Apple Watch becomes available, and no doubt that’s going to be one of the big drivers in the adoption rates. Before then, the festive market is going to make a big contribute to the numbers. By the end of 2014 YouGov’s survey suggests the engagement 4. 7 million people (one in ten) will have a wearable device, no doubt boosted by marketing and people looking for some ‘shiny new tech’ to gift to their loved ones.
The challenge for manufacturers and developers now is to keep people using their devices. The majority of wearable devices are fitness focussed devices, and not everyone is buying them to get fit. 37% of those surveyed have tracking tech simply to keep up with the newest devices in technology. That’s good for sales, but it says to me that more work needs to be done to integrate wearable tech into a normal lifestyle.
That’s where smartwatches may come into their own. Just one in six of those with wearable tech had a smartwatch, a device that is far more personal and ripe for development than any other area of mobile technology on the horizon.
If you want to read more about wearable technology here on Forbes, check out my thoughts on the Pebble Smartwatch, the Sony SmartBand, and why you should wear a smartwatch.