Location-based sensor fusion is still very much a rarity on smartphones today, but ABI Research is forecasting very strong growth driven by local search, retail, health, connected home, and personal asset tracking applications.
Senior Analyst Patrick Connolly comments, “Conditions are perfect for disruptive new entrants. All major sensor IC vendors have identified location-based sensor fusion as important, yet InvenSense is the only company to actively invest in this area. This lack of priority is driven by a short-term demand issue, as the indoor ecosystem is not evolved enough to warrant major developer interest. This will create a void, as the aforementioned applications take off over the next 2 years.”
ABI Research believes that GNSS IC vendors and start-ups have a major opportunity to meet this demand. It is important to note that unlike the IC market where there is one slot to compete for, ABI Research predicts handsets will run multiple indoor location technologies for different applications.
Connolly went on to say, “The competitive environment is further complicated by handset vendors like Apple, creating their own location-based sensor fusion solution as part of an always-on ubiquitous offering. This will be disruptive, creating competition and opportunity in equal measures. ABI Research expects to see location-based sensor fusion solutions built into ICs from Qualcomm and Broadcom becoming more widely available in 2015/16. Similarly, many of the companies behind indoor location applications today are choosing to work with specialized start-ups, such as SenionLab, indoo.rs, and PathSense as they are available, free, and optimized for the application.”
A major opportunity over the next 5 years will be next generation local search and ambient intelligence. A number of major companies are looking to wrestle this area from Google’s grip, such as Facebook and Twitter. Many are already in discussions and trialing with sensor fusion companies with machine learning capabilities now emerging as a big differentiator.
These findings are part of ABI Research’s Location Devices Market Research.
ABI Research provides in-depth analysis and quantitative forecasting of trends in global connectivity and other emerging technologies. From offices in North America, Europe and Asia, ABI Research’s worldwide team of experts advises thousands of decision makers through 70+ research and advisory services. Est. 1990. For more information visit www.abiresearch.com, or call +1.516.624.2500.
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