Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

Aging population set to be major driver for mhealth growth

Steve Rogerson
September 8, 2015
The global mhealth market is expected to reach US$49.12bn by 2020, growing at a CAGR of 47.6% from 2013 to 2020, according to a report by Grand View Research. Monitoring services are expected to grow at an estimated CAGR of 49.7% from 2014 to 2020.
A growing aging population along with rising incidences of chronic diseases such as cancer, heart ailments and diabetes are anticipated to drive market demand. With the introduction of connected medical devices, healthcare providers find it easier to offer medical services at reduced costs.
The growing need to maintain a secure infrastructure for data safety and security is anticipated to restrain mobile health market growth. On account of the increasing healthcare expenditures, affordability and availability of healthcare services is expected to pose difficulties for the mhealth industry.
The mhealth market can be segregated on the basis of services and participants. Services include healthcare systems strengthening, diagnosis services, monitoring services, and other services. Participants include content players, healthcare providers, device vendors and mobile operators.
Monitoring services include chronic disease management, independent aging systems and post acute care services. Diagnosis services, particularly, enable healthcare professionals to connect with patients for offering diagnosis of ailments as well as health related issues. Regulatory support is expected to drive demand for the use of these services; such support includes interoperability and standardisation.
Mobile operators accounted for 48% of the overall market in 2012, with most of their revenue originating from monitoring services such as independent aging systems. Mobile operators offer varied products along with connectivity services, which include health call centres, content-based wellness information and mobile telemedicine. Device vendors are engaged in offering tools for transmitting captured information over mobile networks.
Driven by the need for accessible healthcare, the Asia Pacific market is expected to be the fastest growing regional market, at an estimated CAGR of 49.1% from 2014 to 2020. Low penetration of medical practitioners and growing rural population in Asia Pacific region are expected to open avenues for revenue generation. Furthermore, North America is expected to hold a considerable share in the global market over the forecast period on account of increasing health projects and high smartphones penetration.
The leading players emphasise investment in research and development and strengthening competitiveness with the introduction of innovative products. Key players include AT&T, Vodafone, Apple, Allscripts Healthcare, Qualcomm, Samsung Electronics and MQure.
• A separate report by Market Research Assistance found that approximate RMB16.36bn has been invested within China telemedicine market in 2014. Policies have largely limited the development of China online healthcare market.
The China online healthcare market size reached RMB10.88bn in 2014, where transaction revenue accounts for more than 90 per cent of the market share along with the decreased advertisement revenue in the past five years. Smart devices accounts for 3.1 per cent of the total transaction revenue in China in 2014.