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96 DESIGN007 MAGAZINE I SEPTEMBER 2019 Andy Shaughnessy is managing editor of Design007 Magazine. He has been covering PCB design for 19 years. He can be reached by clicking here. course "Ask the Flexperts—Flexible Circuit Design Through Test With Lessons Learned" at PCB West in Santa Clara, California. This is a class that is built on audience participation. Vern Solberg of Solberg Technical Consulting will present his half- day class "Design and Assembly Process Princi - ples for High-Density Flexible and Rigid-Flex Cir- cuits" at SMTA International in Rosemont, Illinois. And at AltiumLive PCB Design Summit in San Di- ego, California, Flex007 columnist Tara Dunn of Omni PCB will teach her class "Flex and Rigid- Flex: Real-World Use Case Studies." But if you can't make it to trade shows this fall, don't worry. We'll be covering the indus- try from San Diego to Munich and bringing you the flex information you need. See you next month. FLEX007 The market for wearable devices is on track to reach global shipments of 222.9 million units in 2019, growing to 302.3 million units in 2023 with a compound annu- al growth rate (CAGR) of 7.9%, according to a new fore- cast from International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Wearable Device Tracker. Behind that growth is the propagation of smartwatches and ear-worn devic- es, which will account for more than 70% of all wearable shipments by 2023. "Not only is the market diversifying in terms of form factors, but it is also diversifying in terms of connectiv - ity and distribution," said Jitesh Ubrani, research manag- er for IDC's Mobile Device Trackers. "Among all watches, close to half will have the ability to connect to a cellular network by 2023 as consumers along with enterprises and healthcare look to free the watch from the phone and as telcos push forward subsidies or financing options for watches with cellular service." "In addition to the proliferation of devices is the ex- pansion of wearables use cases," said Ramon T. Llamas, research director for IDC's Wearables team. "Smart- watches, as always, will still tell you the time but will move deeper into health and fitness and connect with multiple applications and systems both at work and within the home. Ear-worn devices, while still centered on providing audio, will nudge into other areas like lan - guage translation, smart assistant deployment, and coaching." Watches are forecast to grow from 91.8 million units in 2019 to 131.6 million in 2023 with a five-year CAGR of 9.4%. Apple is expected to lead the way, capturing 25.9% share of all watches in 2023. Beyond Apple will be a variety of brands running different operating systems, including Android, WearOS, Tizen, and others. Not only will smartwatches serve as health and fitness tools for consumers and enterprises, but other use cases, such as parental tracking of their kids' location or the incor - poration of watches into the smart home ecosystem, are also expected to proliferate. Ear-worn devices are expected to grow from 72 mil- lion units in 2019 to 105.3 million in 2023. While many of these will be used as the front end to smart assistants or be used to track health-related metrics, IDC also expects brands to push forth added benefits, such as allowing consumers the ability to cope with hearing loss or giv - ing users the ability to fine-tune their daily auditory ex- perience. Wristbands will see flat shipment growth throughout the 2019–2013 forecast with a CAGR of 0.3%. Chinese brands, such as Xiaomi and Huawei, have been leading this market, and more than half of all wristbands are ex - pected to be shipped in China. Meanwhile, mature mar- kets, such as North America and Western Europe, are ex- pected to see declining shipments as users transition to smartwatches. (Source: IDC) Earwear and Watches Expected to Drive Wearables Market at a CAGR of 7.9%

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