Industry insiders expect the epidemic to spur more innovation in smartwatches and fitness trackers
If anything makes people more conscious about their health, a deadly epidemic could be it. Wearable makers are forecast to ship 30% more gadgets this year as a result of the coronavirus, according to research firm IDC.
Wearables were already becoming more popular as prices declined. Xiaomi-backed Huami, for instance, sold as many fitness bands in the first nine months of 2019 as it did in all of 2018. But analysts say they now expect even more consumers to buy smartwatches and fitness bands. They also believe that the spread of the Covid-19 disease will spur innovative wearables with disinfectant features.
Fitness equipment has already seen a surge in demand in coronavirus-hit China. Sales of yoga mats jumped 350% on bargain shopping app Pinduoduo. Fenqile, which lets users pay for purchases in installments, said accessories for the Nintendo Switch exercise game Ring Fit Adventure were sold out, and sales for smart treadmills doubled in the past two weeks.
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