The “earwear” product category, made up of devices like the AirPods, is set to explode in the next few years. According to a new report by the International Data Corporation, the market for hearables will increase from 139.4 million units this year to 273.7 million in 2023.
The firm doesn’t break down projected sales by brand. However, with Apple’s market-leading status thanks to AirPods, it’s likely that Cupertino will do exceptionally well.
It’s not just earwear devices that are doing well, either. IDC predicts that 69.3 million smartwatches will ship in 2019. Total volumes will hit 109.2 million units per year worldwide in 2023. It writes that:
“Apple’s watchOS will remain in front throughout our forecast by a wide margin and function as the measuring stick against which all other smartwatch platforms are compared.”
Apple’s wearables through 2023
As with any projections, it’s crucial to remember that these 2023 predictions for Apple are just estimates. Numerous factors, tech-related and non-tech-related, will affect the future of the wearables product category.
However, IDC is far from the first group to get hyped about the potential of wearables. Wedbush analyst Dan Ives said he thinks Apple will sell around 65 million AirPods units in total in 2019. Next year, he says Apple could sell 85 million to 90 million AirPods. The main manufacturer of AirPods also became Asia’s best-performing stock this year as a result.
Meanwhile, Apple Watch continues to go from strength to strength. A recent report from Strategy Analytics said overall smartwatch shipments grew 42% year-on-year in Q3 2019 to reach 14 million units. Of these, Apple Watch accounted for 6.8 million devices.
According to analyst Gene Munster, Apple’s wearables business could overtake the Mac in terms of revenue in 2020.
With rumors of an Apple AR headset in the works, Apple could be about to enter another wearables market, too. What’s not to be excited about?