Analysts expect around 17 million smart bands to ship in 2014

Shipments of smart wearable bands are set to grow by mammoth proportions this year, according to independent analyst Canalys. Its research shows that 1.6 million smart bands, such as those used to monitor fitness, were shipped in the second half of 2013, after just over 200,000 smart wearable bands shipped in the first half of the year. This represented growth of 700 percent. Shipments could reach a total of 8 million in 2014, over 23 million units by 2015, and over 45 million by 2017.

If number of comments is any indication of how many of my readers workout or care about tracking their daily activity, then you would think no one uses these devices. However, according to the latest Canalys report, 1.6 million smart bands shipped in the second half of 2013 with over 17 million forecast to ship in 2014. Canalys breaks down the wearable band market into basic (life activity trackers) and smart (smartwatches), although devices like the Fitbit Force have functionality of both and could be consider smart bands. Fibit dominated the basic bands category with over 50 percent market share in the second half of 2013. Surprisingly, Samsung was the leader during this time in the smart band category with the Galaxy Gear available to consumers. If the Galaxy Gear was $100 to $150 less I think it would sell well, but $300 is a tough pill to swallow for a device with limited battery life and connectivity limitations.

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