Bluetooth is set to become the most prominent technology in wireless-equipped consumer medical devices by 2016, IMS Research predicts.
The research firm forecasts that Bluetooth will feature in 35% of some 4.7 million wireless medical devices due to be shipped in 2016. It also predicts shipments of wireless-enabled units will hit 10.3 million in total between 2012 and 2016, however those will account for a fraction of overall medical device shipments during the period - 5% of total shipments in 2012, and 9% by 2016.
Senior Analyst Lisa Arrowsmith states that Bluetooth will gain the upper hand thanks to growing deployments of wireless devices meeting the Bluetooth Smart Ready standards, which she notes is likely to be ubiquitous in mobile phones by 2015.
“These devices can give consumer medical devices additional functionality such as uploading medical information to apps and cloud-based services, as well as other features such as an advanced display,” she notes.
While Arrowsmith notes Bluetooth Smart Ready cuts power consumption compared to regular Bluetooth, she predicts it will take time for medical device manufacturers to fully embrace the new standard, due to the cost of certification and long design cycles.