The global wearable camera market size was valued at USD 6.7 billion in 2022. It is projected to reach USD 22.6 billion by 2031, growing with a CAGR of 14.5% during the forecast period (2023–2031).
Wearable cameras can be mounted on eyeglasses or worn on the chest area and are typically used for sports and adventure activities, public safety, and consumer applications. The increasing demand for features such as hands-free operation and the excellent experience provided by wearable cameras is anticipated to drive the growth of the global market over the forecast period. They also offer real-time information in law enforcement applications, such as in the case of patrolling. Besides law enforcement, wearable cameras are used in deep mines, narrow pathways, and extreme outdoor sports. They are also used in the healthcare and Food and beverage sectors to monitor acute operations.
A recorded conversation between an enforcement officer and a civilian is often more cooperative and easy compared to one that is not recorded. Thus, wearable cameras significantly make law enforcement officers' jobs easier by ensuring cooperation. Additionally, the recorded videos can also help in uncovering facts and facilitate the quicker resolution of complex issues. Wearable cameras are also useful in covering areas covertly, which is particularly important in localities or areas where there is an evident lack of trust and confidence in law enforcement authorities. In such cases, the video documentation of events can prove accounts articulated by officers and community residents.
While technological advancements have long since introduced cameras embedded in our smartphones, the introduction of wearable cameras has taken the technology to new heights. In the past few years, the U.S. has recorded significant growth in the wearable camera market. Companies such as Narrative, Sony, and Panasonic are designing camera-equipped glasses and smaller life-logging devices that clip on outfits and allow hands-free documentation of the lives of surfers, snowboarders, and rock climbers, among others. Continuous innovations have led to the introduction of compact and easily attachable cameras that can be used in extreme situations where it is impossible to hold traditional cameras or recorders. Internet connectivity and high-speed data network have significantly extended the capabilities of wearable cameras, enhancing market penetration on a global scale and value share accumulation in an array of industry verticals. In the medical and security sectors, lack of trust, data breaches, and criticality drive the growth of the wearable camera market.
Dilemmas related to the privacy and usability of lifelogging cameras are expected to restrain the market growth. Negative perceptions of their ease of use and utility are the key areas of concern hampering the early acceptance of wearable cameras among the general public. In recent years, ethical issues related to wearable cameras, such as unauthorized monitoring and media recording, have become prominent. As a result, additional criminal behaviors such as piracy and cyberbullying have grown, as the material may have been secretly captured and utilized for unlawful purposes. As a result, venues such as music festivals and offices, among others, have restricted the admittance of anyone wearing a camera, hence potentially impeding the expansion of the wearable camera market.
Based on types, the wearable camera market is segmented into the head mount, body mount, ear mount, and smart glass.
Head-mount wearable cameras are gaining traction in the sports and adventure, and healthcare sectors.
Body-mount type is mainly used in law enforcement. Police departments, military forces, and firefighters have adopted body-mount wearable cameras. They provide high-quality movies due to their sturdy design, simple mechanics, ultra-wide fields of view, and ability to be worn on the body and used from practically any vantage point. In addition, improvements in sharing possibilities, such as Wi-Fi connectivity and GPS functionalities that let users monitor their speed and location, have contributed to the market's expansion.
Ear mount and smart glass wearable cameras are gaining popularity among the general public as a means to record festivals, concerts, and street scenes.
Based on end-users, the global wearable camera market is segmented into industrial, sports, healthcare, manufacturing, logistics, and government.
The industrial segment is anticipated to witness the highest adoption during the forecast period. Wearable cameras are used in industries for training, security, employee safety, stock management, customer experience, payment, and collaborations. In logistics, they can monitor stock, security, and employee safety. 360 vision, virtual reality (VR), artificial intelligence (AI), deep learning, and computer vision will enable the expansion of wearable cameras in the industrial sector to monitor operational activities. These cameras allow the easy tracking and maintenance of complex industrial processes, which are otherwise difficult to record with hand-held cameras.
The use of action cameras in extreme sports and adventure is gaining traction with the increasing popularity of games around the globe. GoPro is a leading market player in the manufacturing of wearable cameras for various purposes.
Wearable cameras are expected to witness significant growth in the healthcare sector as well. They can be used in hospitals and clinics to monitor daily activities and record diet plans and other diagnostic treatments.
Geographically, the market is segmented into North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, and Latin America, and the Middle East & Africa (LAMEA).
North America dominates the global wearable camera market. North America’s growing healthcare sector, coupled with an expanding geriatric population, is accelerating the demand for wearable cameras. Hospitals in the region have started adopting Assistive Technology Devices (ATD) and lifelogging cameras for use as memory prostheses. The device can be worn around the neck and records a patient’s daily life. The captured images are then uploaded to a computer and analyzed by a specialist for further diagnosis. Wearable cameras are also gaining traction among the U.S. Police Department. Research conducted by the U.S. Department of Justice found that 63 agencies had equipped officers with body-worn cameras to improve evidence collection. For instance, the police department in California adopts body-worn cameras to improve officer performance. In New York, the use of body-worn cameras is required by law to provide an objective record of ‘stop-and-frisks’ and assess complaints of racial profiling.
The Europe market is expected to witness varying growth rates amid high adoption & stringent regulations. The U.K., followed by Spain and Belgium, was one of the foremost adopters of wearable cameras. The police force adopts the technology in said countries to promote peaceful interactions between the police and citizens in sensitive situations. However, stringent regulations that protect citizens’ interests and prohibit video surveillance or recording in private dwellings may hinder the adoption of these cameras. The regulatory framework also limits adoption in the industrial and healthcare sectors. Wearable cameras are regulated by EU laws and require conformity assessment. Sports and adventure applications are expected to flourish in light of the strong tourism sector, especially in France. Wearable cameras allow tourists to shoot and share real-time life experiences. Russia conducts its device clearance and does not recognize other national approvals.
Asia-Pacific is expected to record significant growth, with impetus from Japan & China. Japan is emerging as the second-largest medical device market. The country, along with South Korea, also has a strong foothold in semiconductors and manufacturing. Japan’s software connectivity and hardware devices are treated under the same regulations. China represents a highly censored market. The country mostly prefers products from domestic manufacturers; hence, China offers a high potential for foreign investors to invest in Chinese companies that manufacture and supply wearable cameras. The Asia-Pacific area is experiencing a strong increase in disposable income as a result of decreased commodity prices and macroeconomic stimulus, which is expected to stimulate market expansion. Innovative technology and rising spending on leisure activities are the primary factors driving demand for wearable cameras over the forecast period.
Latin America is experiencing a technology boom due to the government's focus on telecommunications and Chinese investment in the region, particularly in developing technologies. As the region's economy is anticipated to be powered by Brazil and Argentina, consumer spending is also anticipated to expand. Increasing GDP and a growing middle-class help drive the sports and healthcare industries. Cost-effective wearable cameras can revolutionize Latin America and Africa’s economies by opening new perspectives. But the lack of awareness and improper conductance of regulations have slowed down economic growth. Wearable cameras can help detect fraud, simplify day-to-day business, and contribute to the growth of industrial and healthcare segments. Therefore, wearable cameras have huge growth opportunities in Latin America, the Middle East, and Africa.
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