Canalys launches ‘Appcessory Analysis’ service

First analyst firm to launch a dedicated continuous information service in this space

Canalys is pleased to announce the launch of its latest continuous information service: ‘Appcessory Analysis Worldwide’. The service features ongoing market, ecosystem and product analysis, and market sizing and forecasting for the appcessory and wearable device market, and is available from today.

Appcessories are products that connect to applications on smart phones and tablets. Many appcessories are wearable devices and Canalys believes this emerging product category will be one of the hottest technology sectors in years to come, with many high-profile companies expected to launch products in 2013.

‘The appcessories and wearables market is an exciting one to analyze when you consider how consumers will be able to interact with technology in new ways in the future. The products will target sectors such as consumer electronics, health and wellness, and sports and fitness, and come in many different form factors. Some appcessories will be wearable devices, such as bands designed to be worn on the wrist, arm or leg, eyewear or devices in clothing. They will have sensors, wireless communication technology, storage and many will have screens. But appcessories don’t stop there – basketballs, bathroom scales and pianos can all interact with an application on a smart phone or tablet,’ said Chris Jones, Canalys Co-founder, VP and Principal Analyst.

‘There are several appcessories and wearables on the market today. These include the Nike+ FuelBand and the Fitbit One. They become ‘smart’ when they are multipurpose, run an open OS and third-party computing applications can be added. Smart wearables, such as the Pebble Watch, bring greater programmability and more capable developer platforms. The devices feature small displays and more advanced chipsets that can tap into current mobile technologies,’ said Tim Coulling, Canalys Senior Analyst.

‘These new products are unlikely to replace traditional smart phones, but rather serve as accessories that interface with a user’s phone or tablet through Bluetooth 4.0, drawing little power in the process. As a result, the products can rely on smart phones for cellular connectivity, and will be controlled through companion mobile apps, which will allow, for example, Google Glass owners to configure and manage their devices in the future,’ continued Coulling.

‘The greatest challenge for technology companies seeking to make an impact in this space will be to provide compelling new use cases and experiences, such that consumers will demand these products in addition to the mobile devices they already own. Successful products will use sophisticated software, serve as a conduit for compelling cloud services, and provide a powerful platform for third-party applications. Software incumbents with rich mobile ecosystems are particularly well-positioned to expand into this new market,’ said Canalys Analyst Daniel Matte.