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Wearable devices most popular among Americans over 55

Alyssa Clementi

Wearable smartwatcheMarketer has released a new report focused on the growth of wearable devices, including smartwatches and activity trackers. The study reported that wearable devices are most popular among Americans aged 55 and older, predominately due to the advanced health tracking technology of the devices. According to the report, in 2019, 8.2m Americans aged 55 and older will use a wearable device, up more than 15 per cent over 2018.

eMarketer stated that although Americans who are 55 and older still only account for 30.7 per cent of wearable users, they still have the highest growth rate of all users. Americans aged between 25 and 34 account for the least amount of wearers, with a 6.7 per cent user growth rate. As a result of the findings, eMarketer has increased its projections for older Americans.

“Wearables like smartwatches are now coming equipped with additional health features, which are especially appealing to older Americans,” said eMarketer forecasting analyst Cindy Liu. “The Apple Watch Series 4 is outfitted with some major enhancements, including ECG [electrocardiography] readings and fall-detection features.”

Wearable devices are steadily becoming more popular in the US each year, with 60.5m Americans projected to use a wearable device in 2019, increasing 9.2 per cent over 2018. Additionally, eMarketer predicts that 21.2 per cent of internet users will use a wearable device. Smartwatches are playing a key role in the growth of wearable usage, such as Apple Watches, which have health tracking features that may specifically appeal to older Americans.

Next year, according to eMarketer, just over half of wearable users aged 18 and older - or 28.7m adults - will use a smartwatch. In addition, the percentage of US adults that will use a smartwatch is expected to cross 10 per cent for the first time, reaching 11.1 per cent

“Continuous improvements in design and functionality are key drivers of smartwatch adoption,” said Liu . “Specifically, LTE connectivity will be a huge driver, as it allows smartwatch users to stay connected while leaving their phones behind. Other improvements, like longer battery life, larger screens and new health features, will be sure to attract new users.”

You can read the full report here.