With the whole world is getting obsessed with convenient wireless technologies, there’s no doubt that the smart ring market will continue to grow. Smart rings aren’t new at all, but we’ve yet to see them take off significantly the same way smartwatches have. Based on Industry Research’s 2021 report, the smart ring market is expected to take off in both developments and demand in 2021.
While 2020 had been a massive year for a few smart ring companies, 2021 is going to be the bumper year. This is why I’m stoked knowing that there are so many developments far more than what we’ve seen in previous years.
Top 6 Smart Ring Predictions 2021
There’s been a rising market demand for smart rings recently. A huge driving force has been the global Covid-19 pandemic and the impact it brought. As a silver lining, we are bound to see more developments in wireless wearables. Take a look at the top six smart ring predictions for the year 2021.
1. Smart Rings as Health Devices
Wearable tech used as medical devices isn’t new. We’ve seen it on gadgets like the Apple Watch and FitBit. It only makes sense for smart rings to adopt the same uses. Unfortunately, the rising costs for routine healthcare as well as the logistical issues caused by the Covid-19 pandemic and the various lockdowns have made it harder for many of us to keep in shape.
Smart rings propose a more discreet way of monitoring your physical and mental faculties, evolving to be more crucial in today’s climate. The story of Petri Hollmen who survived Covid-19 after his smart ring detected early symptoms of the viral disease. Their use in predictive diagnostics not only means they can detect Covid-19 in your system before your condition gets worse, but it could also be instrumental for helping healthcare professionals diagnose other diseases before their onset. Furthermore, these developments could assist medical professionals in monitoring the health condition of their patients or support online consultations/telemedicine.
2. Contactless Payments Become a Key Battleground
Smart rings are giving contactless payments a new meaning. Dominated by NFC-enabled credit and debit cards and smartphones, the contactless payment space is bound to get more convenient and mobile-friendly as more NFC smart rings are expected to make an entrance. The demand for touch-free payments continues to rise, and smart rings are expected to fill the gap with the ability to make payments without touching POS terminals, or handing over cash and waiting for change. Currently, there are very few contactless payments rings on the market, including the McLear ring, Token Ring, and K Ring.
3. Smart Ring Adoption Continues to Rise
Due to the growing popularity of compact technology and non-contact transactions, smart rings are predicted to increase in popularity and be adopted into people’s day to day lives. Whether it’s sleep-tracking, fitness-tracking, or contactless payments, more people will show interest in this tiny wearable device. Although smart rings are already seeing popularity in continents like Australia and Europe, the market is expected to be adopted to the rest of the world but most especially in the Middle East and East Asia.
4. More Polished Bone-conducted Rings
Bone conduction technology typically used in high-tech hearing aids has already been applied to ORII rings. The ring utilizes vibrations that travel from the finger bone to your inner ear. It sounds outrageous, but the technology is slowly getting developed for use by other companies. Although ORII did not see much success, the company may be improving its technology and come up with another bone-conducted smart ring that will truly change the game.
5. Apple’s Smart Ring May Come to Life
We’ve known it for quite some — an Apple smart ring is in the pipeline after a filed patent revealed so. But this year, we might just start to see prototypes of Apple’s much-anticipated flagship smart ring. We’re not expecting anything crazy — like an official launch or a pre-order (but who knows?) — but we really think Apple is inching closer to showing us their pilot ring device.
What we’ve known so far about the first Apple smart ring is that it will be a miniaturized version of the Apple watch. Based on the patent documentation, the design will sport a small touchscreen. The ring will also respond to voice commands and use a variety of hand gestures as control markers. It is anticipated to be the ultimate way to control your iPhone without touching it. The ring will have a wireless transceiver and a rechargeable power source. Similar to the Apple Watch, it looks as though the device is aimed towards improving the use of other, larger Apple products such as the iPad and iPhone.
6. More Tech Giants Jump into the Smart Ring Bandwagon
Aside from Apple’s move to patent their smart ring technology, tech giants like Amazon and Google have also made steps toward the smart ring market. But in the year 2021, after the smash-hit success of the Oura ring, it looks like the smart ring market is bound to be swarmed by more tech giants and VC-backed startups.
Right now, we only have the Amazon Echo Loop. It’s a first-generation smart ring that allows its users to interact with their Alexa voice assistant before Amazon decided to halt production of the smart ring in favor of the smart eyeglass frames. Google, on the other hand, is expected to release a smart ring that sports a selfie camera. It looks as though the company applied for a patent back in May 2019. However, it was only published late last year.
Smart rings are expected to undergo a number of technological advances this year both in medical and practical uses. Due to the demand for ultimate convenience, it’s exciting to see what the smart ring market will bring to the table. One thing’s for sure — the smart ring market will reach its peak very soon, and that I can’t wait to see a more polished version of the ORII rings.