Smartphones replaced TVs and computers as the dominant product in consumer electronics. But what will replace smartphones as the next king of the hill is still anybody’s guess.
Things like wearables, smart-home devices, and drones have all hit the consumer market with a bang, but no single technology has raced ahead of the others to be heralded as the next society-altering device.
This chart from Statista used a recent forecast from the Consumer Technology Association to look at the various contenders and how they’re expected to do this year. As the chart indicates, sales of wearables like Apple Watches and Fitbits are expected to continue to grow, but not particularly quickly. Sales of virtual reality devices and drones, meanwhile, are expected to grow much quicker and will reach the billion-dollar threshold for the first time.
Even with such growth, though, none of the new product categories looks set to take on smartphones just yet. The CTA predicts 185 million smartphones will ship during 2017.
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