Wearable tech usage expected to grow nearly 60 per cent this year

The number of Americans using wearable devices like the Apple Watch or Fitbit is expected to see double-digit growth over the next few years, a report from eMarketer has found.

This year, nearly 40 million US adults will use smartwatches, fitness trackers, and other wearables – a 57.7 per cent jump from 2014, according to the report. By 2018, that number is expected to rise to 80 million.

Yet eMarketer said that advertisers have yet to fully embrace wearables, which is likely due to the fact that only 16 per cent of Americans currently use them.

Cathy Boyle, senior analyst at eMarketer, said: "The consensus among the experts we consulted was that advertising will not appear in volume on wearables until one or more of the devices attains significant market share, which makes sense considering scale is a critical aspect of digital advertising.”

According to eMarketer, wearables are most popular among Americans aged 25-44 and are expected to become increasingly popular among older populations as more health monitoring devices become available.

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Minda Smiley

Minda Smiley is a reporter at The Drum covering creativity and advertising. Based in Philadelphia, she primarily covers independent agencies and B2B marketing. She also oversees The Drum’s “Independent Influence,” a weekly series that spotlights the work, perspectives and inspirations behind independent agencies. During her time at The Drum, she has covered industry events including SXSW, ANA Masters of Marketing, 4A’s Transformation and C2 Montréal. She is a graduate of the City University of New York’s Graduate School of Journalism.

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