Thursday, April 25, 2013

Market for mobile health sensors will grow to $5.6 billion by 2017

GERMANY: The revenue generated with sensors connecting to an app will reach $5.6 billion by 2017. The market will grow by 69 percent (CAGR) over the next five years. Sixty-one million sensors will be shipped to mHealth app users in 2017.

In 2017, more than 61 million external sensors will be shipped to smartphone and tablet users. Ralf-Gordon Jahns, gead of Research at research2guidance, explains, “The majority of sensors will track health parameters for sports and fitness purposes just as the existing hundreds of ANT+ sensors today.”

There are approximately 200 external sensors that connect to a smartphone app today. The majority of these sensors is priced between $20 and $200 and is usually charged as one-off-payment or included in a subscription model.

Today’s app-connecting sensors are more consumer products than medical products. Ralf-Gordon Jahns points out that “with the boom of the smartphone app market, sensors which link to an app became fashionable products. They have got nothing to do with the grey and clumsy sensors that really looked like medical devices and that you would hestitate to show in public. Today’s app-related sensors are very designed just like the corresponding apps”.

The sensor business model will shift from proprietary solutions, which are only working with a single app to open systems, which allow connections to multiple apps (e.g HxM BT by Zephir, Withing).

mHealth app based business models, which rely on sensors sales will play a major role in the mHealth market, says the new “Global Mobile Health Market Report 2013-2017” by research2guidance.

mHealth apps make more and more use of external sensors. Sensors can track a range of health metrics, such as blood pressure, heart rate, glucose level, medication compliance and more. They connect with the corresponding app via Bluetooth, WiFi or USB. The app analysis, displays and shares the data that is being monitored by the sensors.

The market today is dominated by small tech companies that have been first to enter the market in 2009 and 2010. With the growing market potential, big brands from sport like Nike or technology giants (e.g. Samsung) have entered the mHealth sensor market as well.

First market exits (e.g. Zeo) indicate that the market will become tough for small tech companies that do not have the financial muscle to increase their customer base fast enough and to keep track with the innovation speed in the smartphone/app/sensor market.

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