The wearable technology market is set to expand rapidly in the next several years, according to new data from Juniper Research.
The research firm on Tuesday forecast that worldwide spending on wearable technology will hit $1.4 billion this year. By 2018, that figure will hit $19 billion. The increase is due in large part to "heightened consumer awareness of wearable technology," Juniper Research's Nitin Bhas said in a statement.
That heightened awareness has resulted in large part from reports that Apple could be getting ready to launch a new smartwatch and from the actual debut of the Samsung Galaxy Gear watch. In addition, Google Glass, the search giant's wearable eyewear, has prompted some to consider how they might use wearable technology to expand their productivity.
The market's growth will of course be a good thing for device makers, but according to Juniper, developers might benefit as well.
"Significant opportunities will arise for app developers -- across the health, fitness, sports and communication segments," the company said.