Technologies Fostering Development of New Assistive Devices; $15 Billion in Market Gains by 2020

September 29, 2015

Wellesley, Mass., September 29, 2015 – Speech recognition and vocal output technologies represent key advances in assistive technology applications. BCC Research reveals in its new report that those developments, along with continued progress in medical science, technology and healthcare, combined with demographic trends, societal evolution and changing attitudes, will spur healthy growth in the market for assistive technologies.

Assistive technology products help a person with a disability to perform various tasks and activities. The technology encompasses a wide range of devices, from “low-tech” products such as eyeglasses and large-print books to technologically sophisticated products such as voice synthesizers, Braille readers and wireless monitoring devices.

The U.S. market for assistive technologies is projected to grow from $43.1 billion (including eyeglasses and contact lenses) in 2015 to $58.3 billion in 2020, reflecting a five-year (2015-2020) compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 6.2%.

Exclusive of eyeglasses and contacts, the U.S. assistive technologies market is expected to reach $17.7 billion and $24.2 billion, respectively, in 2015 and 2020, with a five-year CAGR of 6.5%. Exclusive of eyeglasses, communication aids represented the largest segment with a 40.8% share of the market, followed by mobility aids (19.9%) and daily living aids (16.2%).

Steady advances in materials and technologies associated with communications, electronics, materials, smart materials, mobile location, and sensors will stimulate robust market growth during the forecast period. For example, wheelchair frames made with newer materials such as titanium and composites are lighter, stronger and more durable. Two important electronic technologies are speech recognition and vocal output, which enable physically disabled or hearing- or speech-impaired users to interact with a computer, use a telephone, and control a wide range of other electrical and electronic devices such as lights and climate control.

“Speech recognition technology has advanced rapidly, particularly in commercial and professional applications. The main speech recognition engines are based on technologies developed by Dragon Systems (now owned by Nuance Communications) and IBM,” says BCC Research analyst Andrew McWilliams. “The two companies are collaborating in the development of improved speech recognition technologies.  In addition, Nuance collaborated with Apple in the development of the Siri application for iPhones and iPads. Nuance technology is also behind the Google Now application for Android-based mobile devices, which performs many of the same functions as Siri.”

Disabled and Elderly Assistive Technologies (HLC047E) examines market opportunities for assistive technology products. The report identifies major product types, both commercial and developmental, with detailed market projections through 2020.

Editors and reporters who wish to speak with the analyst should contact Steven Cumming at


Disabled and Elderly Assistive Technologies( HLC047E )
Publish Date: Sep 2015    

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