Health, commercial/enterprise, wearables, and iBeacons will help to revive the GPS tracking device market, with ABI Research (www.abiresearch.com) forecasting the market to reach over $3.5 billion in 2019.
The GPS personal tracking market has always had huge potential yet it has faced huge barriers around awareness and RoI (return on investment), expensive devices, cellular subscriptions, indoor location and severe regionalization and fragmentation, according to the research group. As a result the market has never been able to scale sufficiently to lower costs and create the revenue to support much needed marketing/advertising campaigns.
“The potential of this market continues to draw investment and interest. Over the last 12 months, there has been a host of companies entering this space,” ABI Research Senior Analyst Patrick Connolly says. “As well as a steady stream of start-ups like estimate and hereO, buoyed by wearables and iBeacons, enterprise/commercial GPS companies like Quattro Wireless and Masternaut are moving into areas such as mobile workforce management and lone worker applications, while the connected home market will evolve to support personal protection across children, pets, cars, etc. Carriers eager to solve the problem of saturated markets have begun to reconsider this space with the dawn of GPS-enabled wearables and the Internet of everything.”
He adds that this is reflected in a significant increase in GPS IC shipments into this space over the past year, as low-cost GPS units become adopted worldwide for a host of applications. iBeacons are set to be a major driver, solving the issue of indoor location, while also creating a low-cost entry point for both OEMs and consumers. With BLE beacons forecast to penetrate into all aspects of life over the next three years, consumer awareness and acceptance will quickly emerge, according to ABI Research.