A New Bluetooth Solution Area
Will Lead the Way By 2023

For years, Bluetooth® technology has been, and still is, synonymous with audio streaming; so much so that, according to this year’s Bluetooth Market Update, 9 out of 10 speakers will include Bluetooth by 2023. The market transition to wireless speakers is nearly complete, confirming consumer confidence in and preference for Bluetooth wireless audio. But as the Bluetooth community expanded the capabilities of the technology, Bluetooth started being featured across more and more markets. Now, every year, millions of Bluetooth low-power devices — from fitness trackers and health & wellness monitors to toys and tools — free consumers from the tether of wires. 

The wide application of Bluetooth shows us that anything can be a connected device. According to the 2019 Bluetooth Market Update, simple data transfer solutions are forecasted to double from 690 million shipped annually in 2018 to 1.3 billion annual shipments in 2023. This means that, by the end of the forecast period, data transfer will be the leading Bluetooth solution area by annual volume.

Anything Can Be a Connected Device

“Bluetooth Low Energy has made it easy for developers to implement applications and data collection functions from any device.”

Considering that Bluetooth technology is integrated in 100% of phones, tablets, and PCs, the ubiquity of the technology makes it that much easier for developers to implement it into their connected device innovations. “It’s all about the proliferation of Bluetooth Low Energy and the concept that anything can be a connected device,” said Chuck Sabin, Bluetooth SIG senior director of strategy and planning. “Bluetooth Low Energy has made it easy for developers to implement applications and data collection functions from any device.”

The ability to collect data and turn it into information is an added benefit that can be incorporated in any device — whether it’s a cup, scale, toothbrush, or light bulb. “To a degree, it doesn’t have to be a purchase decision that an individual has to make about that product,” said Sabin. “Consumers buy a product for the function of that product, and the ability to collect data around that function is an added feature. The simplicity of a developer being able to add a data collection capability to any device is what’s proliferating sharp growth in data transfer solutions.”

Beyond Classification

A byproduct of data transfer device proliferation has been a high volume of unclassified, long-tail devices. Shortly after its inception, Bluetooth only catered to a handful of well-defined device categories (cars, speakers, headsets, mice, keyboards, etc.). With the emergence of Bluetooth Low Energy, the ceiling for what defined a single device category was shattered, and Bluetooth became a technology for every device.

Unlike most solution areas, data transfer is not dominated by a particular device type. With audio, for example, the headset is far and away the highest volume single device category. But data transfer solutions are a long tail of varying device types. Many of the chips and modules being sold into the data transfer market cannot yet be classified into a device category. This creates an other consumer electronics devices category that currently accounts for 11% of the overall connected devices market.

Sharp Market Growth

The concept of including Bluetooth as an added feature in all sorts of devices continues to play out in the market place. There’s always data to be collected, and recent trends indicate that the growing demand for data collection — for the purpose of turning it into information and action by the individual or organization — is the main driver for the increase in the volume of data transfer devices.

For more on what analysts are predicting within Bluetooth solution areas and markets, download the 2019 Bluetooth Market Update.


2019 Bluetooth Market Update

Get exclusive access to the most important trends and forecasts for Bluetooth technology, and learn how the Bluetooth community continues to expand the technology to solve new connectivity challenges and address new market opportunities.


Related Resources

Bluetooth Goes Beyond Visual Range

The iPad Ground Station is waypoint flying at your fingerstips. Watch this demo of…

Beacon Buyer’s Guide

Selecting the right beacon for your deployment is one of the early steps in…

Connectivity Choices for your Medical Device and IoMT Application

It’s important that hospital or medical device company decision-makers understand the concept of IoMT,…

How to Make Wearables Bluetooth Mesh Provisioners

Learn how to create applications for smartwatches and other platforms that can monitor and control nodes in a Bluetooth mesh network.

2019 Bluetooth Market Update

Supported by updated forecasts from ABI Research and insights from several other analyst firms, the Bluetooth Market Update highlights the latest Bluetooth trends and forecasts.

Bluetooth Core Specification v5.1 Feature Overview

Bluetooth Core Specification v5.1 contains a series of updates to the Bluetooth core specification. This document summarizes and explains each change.

Data is Blue

See how Bluetooth is connecting billions of everyday devices and helping make the IoT vision a reality.

Bluetooth 5: Go Faster, Go Further

Learn how Bluetooth 5 significantly increases the range, speed, and broadcast messaging capacity of Bluetooth applications, making use cases in smart building and smart industry a reality.

Overview – Bluetooth Technology

See how the global standard for simple, secure connection has expanded to meet the…