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The global smart PPE technology market size was USD 2.41 billion in 2019 and is projected to reach USD 7.70 billion by 2027, exhibiting a CAGR of 15.9% during the forecast period.
Smart PPE is a wearable device with built-in advanced technologies that monitors and collects real time data. Advanced digital technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT), industrial IoT, smart sensors, and connected devices assist in detecting and sending real-time alerts and gather data for further market analysis. The growing number of accidents and fatalities across industries is expected to boost the demand for smart PPE technology to ensure a more secure working environment and workers’ well-being. For instance, in the US, over 22 million workers are exposed to hazardous environments such as loud noise, dust, chemical, metal particles, and more. Smart PPE technology is expected to offer protection to the user along with support in maintaining a work-conducive environment with its data analytics.
Smart PPE to Witness a Surge in Demand amid COVID-19
The demand for smart PPE in the industrial sector remained low during lockdown owing to the temporary shutdown of factories and industries. The healthcare industry, on the other hand, showcased high demand for smart PPE for protecting healthcare workers and managing medical waste. However, the outbreak of the pandemic has significantly disrupted the supply chains of products and devices. This has also impacted the production of smart personal protective equipment. This may hinder the adoption of smart PPE technology during the lockdown period.
On the flip side, it is estimated that post-lockdown the demand for smart PPE is expected to gain rapid momentum as the industrial sector is expected to invest heavily in smart PPE to provide a safe and secure work environment. For instance, to provide and control social distancing in factories, ProGlove launched a smart glove that sends alerts when workers come in close proximity to each other. Similarly, the production of smart gloves, smart protective clothing, and smart respirators is expected to grow exponentially to cater to the increasing demand from the healthcare sector. Thus, the market is expected to grow rapidly in the post-pandemic period.
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Growing Demand for Wearable Technology to Provide Safety at Workplace to Propel the Market
Work field accidents and mishaps often hamper the productivity of workers. To reduce accidents at the workplace, industries have started adopting wearable technologies to continuously monitor and analyze the field environment. PPE providers are offering smart PPE technology by integrating wearable technologies to monitor user behavior and the external environment. For instance, in 2018, Intellinium in collaboration with Sierra Wireless launched a smart safety shoe based on a device-to-cloud IoT solution. The smart shoe provides safety to the worker in dangerous, noisy, and remote workplaces, such as mines, construction sites, commercial fishing, factories, oil platforms, and agriculture operations, among others.
Advanced technologies such as the industrial internet of things (IIoT), connected devices, smart sensors, and artificial intelligence (AI) are further augmenting the demand for PPE technologies. For example, in loud and low-visibility environments, employees can use smart helmets, smart eyewear, and smart communication systems for real-time communication and enhance safety measures. With smart technologies, the capabilities offered by PPE have changed and additionally offer environment monitoring capability, users' health status, real-time communication, and smart safety solutions, among others. Also, this technology is helping in boosting productivity and safety at workplaces. This is expected to drive the demand for smart PPE.
Rising Demand for Smart PPE in the Healthcare & Pharmaceutical Industries to Drive Market Growth
The healthcare industry is witnessing a surge in demand for smart PPE technologies owing to the growing prevalence of high-risk infectious diseases such as Ebola, SARS, swine flu, and the current COVID-19, among others. These conditions have fueled the demand for smart PPE as it monitors and analyzes the external environment. For example, smart protective clothing and smart gloves comprise smart sensors to provide e-health monitoring capabilities. The collected data is then analyzed over a personal computer and feedback is given to the user. For instance, in India, to speed up the screening process for COVID-19, healthcare workers used smart helmets to check body temperatures in densely populated areas. The smart helmet detects the temperature and transmits the result over its connected smartwatch.
Similarly, workers in the pharmaceutical industry are regularly exposed to hazardous particles, chemicals, gases, and biological agents. This exposure to dangerous substances in industries is stringently monitored by the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OHSA) to ensure a safe and secure work environment. Also, tightening government safety regulations for workers across industries is boosting the adoption of these wearable technologies and fueling the smart PPE technology market growth.
Poor Quality Devices and Network Connection to Obstruct Market Growth
Smart PPE technologies offer safety, security, and protection from dangerous activities and accidents. Thus, it is essential to have a proper network connection all the time to monitor real-time changes. Any errors or delays in sending alerts can cause serious damage to the user and the environment. Thus, it is necessary to have properly tested and verified products while working in harsh environments.
Also, as the equipment is connected, the chances of data breaching of sensitive personal and professional data are very high. Thus, low-quality devices and unsecured connections might hamper the growth of the market. However, implementing tested and verified products along with proper network security planning can help users in accruing full advantage of this smart technology.
Increasing Respiratory Issues to Drive the Demand for Smart Respirators
Based on product type, the market is categorized into smart safety gloves, smart shoes, smart eyewear, smart protective clothing, smart ear muffs/plugs, smart respirator, and others (smart communication, smartwatches, etc.).
The smart glove segment is expected to lead the market during the forecast period. Smart gloves are majorly used as personal protective equipment (PPE) across industries such as manufacturing, chemical, and pharmaceutical, among others. The increasing safety regulations and compliances are expected to drive the demand for industrial smart gloves.
Similarly, the smart eyewear segment is expected to gain huge demand across industry verticals. Smart eyewear and smart goggle manufacturers such as Vuzix Corporation and DAQRI are offering PPE-certified smart eyewear to provide industrial safety. This is expected to drive market growth prospects. Also, smart eyewear can provide an augmented display for training new workers and providing remote assistance. Companies such as 3M, DAQRI, Vuzix Corporation, and uvex Group are focusing on expanding their smart eyewear portfolios.
The smart respirators segment is expected to gain rapid traction owing to the increasing concerns over acute respiratory diseases caused due to inhalation of minute metal particles, chemical exposure, harmful gas exposure in the factories, and manufacturing environment. Moreover, the emergence of viral diseases is boosting the adoption of smart respirators in healthcare. For instance, 3M Company is developing a smart face mask that monitors the health of the user. The company has also developed a gas mask for firemen to trace and rescue trapped people using thermal imaging solutions.
The smart protective clothing segment is displaying promising growth on account of its ability to provide overall protection and safety to the user. Considering the rising awareness about worker safety, industries are investing in smart protective clothing equipped with shock, heat, and flame resistant capabilities to reduce the probability of workplace accidents. This is expected to drive the smart PPE market.
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Rising Awareness about Industrial Safety to Aid Growth
Based on application, the market is segmented into healthcare & medical, fitness & wellness, infotainment, industrial, military, and others (sports & adventure, aerospace, etc.). The industrial segment is expected to dominate the adoption of smart PPE technology during the forecast period. Growing stringency of employee safety regulations and rules such as occupational health and safety (OHS) is driving the adoption of smart PPE for reducing accidents in industrial plants. Industries are using the data collected from smart devices to analyze and reduce industrial mishaps. For instance, DAQRI’s smart construction helmet transmits all worker data to the control room such as details of the surrounding environment and the current location of users and their activities. This helps in maintaining a safe environment and keeps track of every movement of workers.
Similarly, the healthcare and medical segment is witnessing the rapid adoption of smart personal protective equipment to deal with the constant exposure of workers and health professionals to viral and highly infectious diseases. The COVID-19 pandemic has significantly boosted the demand for smart PPE in this industry.
Governments across the globe are continuously focusing on providing lifesaving equipment to soldiers during combat missions. The uptake of smart PPE technologies is expected to grow in the defense sector as they offer better security, surveillance, and communication capabilities to the armed forces.
The demand for these technologies is growing steadily in fitness & wellness and infotainment applications owing to the rising focus on safety precautions. This is expected to drive market growth.
North America Smart PPE Technology Market Size, 2019 (USD Million)
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By region, the market has been analyzed across North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, the Middle East & Africa, and South America.
North America is expected to dominate the smart PPE technology market share during the forecast period. Growing awareness regarding workplace safety among workers and employers is driving the market in the region. The rapid adoption of technologies such as IoT, industrial IoT, connected and wearable devices, and smart sensors, among others, is expected to positively impact the regional market. Further, in the US, insurance companies have started considering the data provided by smart PPE to sanction claims of workers and prevent false claims.
Canada is expected to display a high CAGR during the forecast period. According to the Association of Workers’ Compensation Boards of Canada (AWCBC), across Canada, 951 fatalities were reported due to workplace accidents in the year 2017. Considering the rising number of accidents, the demand for this technology is expected to grow in the country.
Europe is likely to have the second-largest revenue share during the forecast period. The significant presence of automotive, chemical, and healthcare industries is driving the demand for smart PPE technology in the continent. According to the European Parliament Scientific and Technology Options Assessment Panel (STOA), wearable technology has made drastic changes in the lives of the people in the region. Considering the advantages of wearable devices, industries have integrated this technology with PPE to provide smart personal protective equipment solutions. In Europe, the Food & Drug Administration, the World Health Organization, and the European Union have created directives and guidelines for handling, manufacturing, and packaging pharmaceutical products and the safety of staff working in the pharmaceutical industry. This is expected to drive PPE technology demand across European countries.
South America is expected to depict steady growth during the forecast period owing to the expanding industrial sector and improving healthcare provisions.
Asia Pacific is expected to show rapid growth during the forecast period owing to the presence of leading PPE manufacturers in China and India. The development and expansion of the industrial sector are driving the need for providing a safe and monitored working environment. India is expected to gain swift growth during the forecast period. According to IndustryALL, in 2020, India witnessed 30 major industrial accidents. The growing number of accidents and increasing governmental regulation of workers’ safety are expected to boost the demand for smart PPE.
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The Middle East & Africa region is also anticipated to gain substantial momentum during the forecast period. The dominant presence of oil and gas companies across the region is expected to drive product demand.
Intellinium Aims to Expand Its Smart PPE Technology Products across Industry Verticals
Intellinium is expanding its global smart PPE technology product portfolio across construction industry, roads and highway safety and manufacturing industries, construction, and roads and highway safety. The company is focusing on launching new and innovative safety products to gain maximum market share. The company is entering into strategic partnerships to increase its global presence.
The other key companies, such as 3M Company, Ansell Ltd., DuPont de Nemours Inc., Honeywell International Inc., and uvex Group, are offering innovative safety products. These key players are offering products under the standard guidelines. Also, to widen their product portfolios and business reach, these companies are entering into collaborations and partnerships.
August 2019 – Intellinium, in collaboration with the French company APRR-AREA, launched a smart cone technology for protecting workers on building sites, roads, and highways. The company offers advanced technologies to protect workers from falls or any other on-site risks.
October 2019 – Intellinium announced a partnership with OPPBTP for promoting the company’s construction-specific smart PPE products such as smart cones and safety pods. OPPBTP hosts promotional events for the company to provide an introductory demonstration for its smart PPE.
An Infographic Representation of Smart PPE Technology Market
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The market research report highlights leading regions across the world to offer a better understanding of the market. Furthermore, the report provides insights into the latest industry trends and analyzes technologies that are being deployed at a rapid pace at the global level. It further highlights some of the growth-stimulating factors and restraints, helping the reader to gain in-depth knowledge about the market.
Value (USD billion)
Product Type; Application; and Region
By Product Type
The global market is projected to reach USD 7.70 billion by 2027.
In 2019, the market value stood at USD 2.41 billion.
The market is projected to grow at a promising CAGR of 15.9% during the forecast period.
The industrial segment is likely to lead the market.
Growing demand for smart PPE in the healthcare & pharmaceutical industries is likely to drive the market.
3M Company, Ansell Ltd., DuPont de Nemours Inc., Honeywell International Inc., uvex Group, Vuzix Corporation, DAQRI, Seebo Interactive LTD., and Dragerwerk AG & Co. KGaA are the top players in the market.
North America is expected to hold the highest market share.
Asia Pacific is expected to grow at the highest CAGR.
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