With analysts predictions of up to $50 billion per year, is wearable computing the next big trend in tech? Innovations from Apple and Google look to drive app and hardware sales over the next several years.
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Is wearable tech the next big trend?

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According to Credit Suisse analysts, the wearable computing market could grow to become a $30 to $50 billion industry over the next two to three years as top shelf manufacturers set their sights on what looks to be the next big trend in mobile. Google is already hard at work attempting to convince folks that a pair of futuristic eyewear is just as chic in 2013 as it is in the latest Star Trek adventure, while all signs point towards Apple launching an iOS-flavored smart watch, perhaps as early as this year. Are we at the dawn of a new era in mobile electronics?

Even more tempered projections see the wearable computing sector growing to $6 billion per year by 2016, an impressive figure for such a young product segment, as apps for smart watches and eyeglasses experience the same sort of boom that has made smartphones one of the world’s biggest economic sectors in recent years. According to Credit Suisse, the so-called iWatch could eclipse that lower number on its own, generating as much as $10 billion per year.

The shift occurs as people look less towards their smartphones, tablets, and PCs as computing hardware and more as companion devices for their everyday lives. It also comes at a times when the fitness and personal health market, an area where wearable computing can play a large role, is also experiencing its own rise.

But questions remain about whether or not the general population is ready for such wearable computing devices. Google’s Glass is certainly a bit more of a stretch than a smart watch, however, and if Apple has shown anything in recent years it is that they company knows how to turn fringe tech ideas into mainstream hits. Just look at the iPad and what it did for the tablet market. Could an iWatch do the same for wearable computing? We suppose only time will tell, but if the word of industry analysts is to be believed, that time is now.

 

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