Wearable technology is coming to town this Christmas, with over £105 million worth of sales predicted for the festive period.
Figures released by the Centre for Retail Research suggest that a plethora of exciting ‘futuristic’ wearable products are going to provide the ultimate stocking fillers in 2014. Gadgets including smartwatches, health and fitness tracking wristbands and even Google’s £1,000-a-pop smart glasses are likely to see UK sales more than triple this month.
One in five adults in the UK already uses a piece of wearable technology, according to market research firm Mintel, and that figure is only expected to increase. Besides the aforementioned Google Glass, other popular products include the Pebble Smartwatch, which lets users add apps allowing them to tweak thermostats, adjust lights and control their television or sound systems, without even picking up a device.
Christmas 2014 – first true test of this new technology
In total, smartwatches account for just 11 per cent of the wearable technology market, although sales are expected to have climbed by as much as 667 per cent once 2014 is over.
Fitness is by far the most popular wearable tech sector with Nike recently announcing plans to collaborate with Apple on its eagerly-anticipated iWatch, due for release in spring 2015.
Erol Sukan, business director for market research institute GfK, said: “It’s clear that as new brands have entered the market we have seen prices begin to rise across most wearables, however this is generally because manufacturers are positioning their first entries into the market quite high.
“As we are now starting the long lead-up to Christmas we could see many brands delivering price declines ahead of the festive season, or even introducing more entry price point models. Wearables will be a big gifting market, with Christmas 2014 the first true test of this burgeoning product.”