Bluetooth technology exploding in consumer electronics market
The vast consumer electronics market is filled with opportunities for Bluetooth technology, with dozens of different types of devices people can use in their home, their car, or on the go. The long list of devices with Bluetooth technology includes:
- Home: TVs, remote controls, 3D glasses, A/V receivers, game consoles and game controllers.
- Car: handsfree calling systems, GPS navigation devices, head units or car entertainment systems that can connect to a smartphone and run phone apps.
- On the go: stereo headphones, stereo ear buds, digital cameras, wireless speakers, portable media players.
Bluetooth wireless technology is the thread that ties these diverse consumer products together, letting people skip the hassle of wires for the growing number of electronic devices they use every day. The Bluetooth brand promise of simple, secure, everywhere is a powerful tool to help sell Bluetooth devices to consumers.
Smart CE devices are forecast to grow six fold, surpassing 230 million installed units by 2014"
-- IMS Research
The sensational popularity of smart phones is also creating opportunities for consumer electronics products that allow phones to do more, from play music with wireless speakers and high-fidelity stereo headphones to communicate better with improved Bluetooth headsets and handsfree calling systems.
Thanks to the Bluetooth technology built into every Nintendo Wii and Sony PlayStation, Bluetooth technology is already well established in the game industry. There's a brisk third-party market for Bluetooth enabled headsets, stereo headphones, remote controllers, and game controllers that work with these game consoles.
Smart phones, smart watches and more
Many of the latest consumer devices are called "smart" because they pack powerful features never before available to products in their category, like the ability of phones to run applications that used to require a computer.
Even TVs are becoming smart, with their ability to stream music and movies from the Internet, access a wide variety of online services, and run applications. People who have a TV with integrated Bluetooth technology can also stream music and video directly to their TV from their smartphone or laptop.
Coming soon are Bluetooth enabled smart watches that will be able to display alerts and messages from your Bluetooth phone, allowing you to see who sent you email or a text message even if your phone is hidden in a pocket or purse.
Tremendous growth for Bluetooth technology in TVs
Perhaps no area of consumer electronics offer as many opportunities to electronics makers than the television. In 2010, there were fewer than 1 million TVs shipped with Bluetooth technology worldwide. In 2011, analysts expect more than 4 million TVs to ship with Bluetooth technology embedded. That number is expected to at least double in 2012, with Bluetooth v4.0 enabled TVs leading the way.
The incredible momentum of Bluetooth technology in TVs is driven by the superior performance that Bluetooth technology enables in active 3D glasses, advanced remote controls, and high quality streaming audio (between the TV and Bluetooth enabled wireless headphones).
Bluetooth's rapid proliferation in TVs will create tremendous opportunities for a diverse set of CE manufacturers. What Bluetooth enabled for mobile phones is a great example of what is sure to happen with TVs.
The vast majority of mobile phones today include Bluetooth technology, enabling them to wirelessly connect to stereo headphones, speakers, headsets, and other Bluetooth accessories.
Likewise, Bluetooth enabled TVs should rapidly expand demand for the same types of devices, as well as Bluetooth enabled cameras, set-top boxes, advanced speaker systems, and A/V receivers.
Two areas in particular stand out as opportunities in the TV market:
- 3D television, where Bluetooth technology is making it easier to create lightweight, high-quality 3D glasses that enhance the 3D viewing experience.
- TV remote controls that include a small QWERTY keyboard, making it easier to search for TV shows than with an on-screen keyboard. Bluetooth enabled remote controls also eliminate the line-of-sight requirements of conventional infrared remotes, which must be pointed directly at the TV, receiver, or other device you're trying to control.
Fast facts about Bluetooth technology in consumer electronics
- Of more than 50 million game consoles sold in 2010, 62 percent included Bluetooth technology.
- Of 54 million portable media players sold in 2010, more than half included Bluetooth technology.
- The consumer electronics industry represents a market opportunity of more than 2 billion devices, most of which could benefit from Bluetooth technology.
- Bluetooth technology gained incredible momentum in the massive CE market in 2011, and is expected to grow even faster in the future. IMS Research predicts that by 2015, 44 percent of consumer electronics devices will include some form of Bluetooth technology – hundreds of millions of new devices per year.
How to profit from this market
The Bluetooth SIG can help your company benefit from opportunities in the consumer electronics market. Get started by joining the Bluetooth SIG community. We have more than 16,500 member companies worldwide making everything from cars and computers to mobile phones and microchips. To learn more, visit our membership page.