5G Growth Driving Connected Device Form Factor Innovation


Electronics continue to weave themselves into humans’ daily lives, and it is up to the companies to invest in innovating around new form factors leveraging the latest technologies that will benefit users both in their personal and business lives. Frost & Sullivan has found that one of the key drivers of new form factor adoption is advancements in connectivity technology.

The new form factors categories identified within the study are wearables, haptics, biometrics, implants and brain-controlled interfaces. These form factors are the key for the development and mass adoption of devices. And, they all will benefit heavily from 5G networks.

The arrival of 5G and expanding AI use cases will inflate global demand. This will lead to improved innovation across wearables, flexible devices and implants, making them smaller while expanding their features and capabilities.

Healthcare providers, for example, could process data sent over 5G from a wearable device and give patients real-time feedback on their health status. For those who exercise, a thin band can provide real-time feedback and give alerts on when to push harder during the workout – an enhanced version of most current fitness trackers.

"With consumers' growing preference for small-sized electronic devices, miniaturization will lead to developmental objectives for manufacturers,” said Akshay Menon, senior research analyst at Frost & Sullivan. “Further, new form factor development will lead to increased human-machine interaction, making data security a strategic priority for organizations."

Manufacturers still do have to find that balance between cost and innovation to unlock optimal market potential, however. To tap into the growth prospects of new form factors, the study suggested that market participants should:

  • Partner with application companies and social platforms to ensure their offerings are compatible with the device hardware, establishing an immersive customer experience.
  • Invest in research to develop durable materials, as current stretchable materials are thermoplastic, meaning heat softens them and makes them unable to withstand thermal exposure.
  • Associate with organizations in the technology-enabled space as new form of technology is dependent on internet connectivity and AI.

"As the demand for new pliable form factors increases, companies cannot rely on traditionally shaped devices to capture market share," said Menon. "This encourages big electronic companies to work with newer materials to manufacture durable and flexible electronics."

Edited by Erik Linask
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IoTevolutionworld Editor

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