Research Firm Says Police, Security to Lead Smart Glasses Sales (1/28/15)
Wednesday, January 28, 2015 | Comments

ABI Research expects 2015 to be a big year for smart glasses with unit shipment growth of nearly 150 percent in 2015, almost of all of which will be in the enterprise and public sector. The market intelligence firm expects more than 90 percent of smart glasses will be sold to remote assistance, police and military, security, warehouse, and barcode scanning operations, as well as the consumer space for gaming, during 2015.

“Smart glasses were much hyped in 2014 as a smartphone replacement, largely on the back of Google’s Glass product announced in early 2013,” said ABI Research Senior Practice Director Nick Spencer. “However, 2014 showed the use case for smart glasses is task specific, for example remote assistance, security (facial and number plate recognition), augmented reality and virtual reality. The Google Glass generalized use case is a primary reason for the changes announced last week.”

Smart glasses will not be the highest growth category in the wearables space, where smart watches will lead in consumer sales, ABI Research said.

“The use case for general-purpose smart glasses in the consumer space is weak, especially at a technical level, where projector quality has some way to go, as does battery life along with RF components and the miniaturization of these elements,” Spencer said. “Also, at a practical level, most people are not prepared to wear glasses because many simply do not normally need to, and if they do, they need specific lenses. Lastly, many glasses wearers have moved to wearing contact lenses. It just seems a retrograde form factor and a very obtrusive one for the user and general public.”

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