Stretchable electronics is a technology for building electronic circuits by depositing stretchable electronic devices and circuits onto stretchable substrates or embed them entirely in a stretchable material like silicones or polyurethanes. Stretchable electronics comes in many shapes and forms. Because of their elasticity and conformity, they are widely used in wearable medical devices. A new report titled Stretchable and Conformal Electronics 2019-2029 finds that the stretchable and conformal electronics market will grow to approach $500m within a decade, reports Wearable Technology Insights.
This report provides a comprehensive and insightful view of this diverse emerging technology front. It covers the progress of more than 100 companies and 25 research institutes including first-hand primary research on 62 companies.
According to the report, most commercial growth in stretchable electronics comes from electrodes, circuit lines and interconnects, and basic sensors. InMold Electronics products are used in various fitness products for monitoring heart rate or respiration. These products are also used in wearables to monitor pregnancy. Many are also working on printed circuit boards.
“Stretchable electronics faces a complicated path to the market. It is not a replacement market in that stretchable electronics will often not substitute an existing component or product. There are rare exceptions, for example, in e-textiles. However, even in those cases, the addressable market itself is nascent and fragmented. As such, the challenge is to create new markets and new demand,” the report states. “This will require identifying and defining problems, in diverse sectors, which the unique features of stretchable electronics can help solve.”
The positive side, however, is that stretchable electronics are being used in various sectors. The most popular form of SCE is seen in fitness monitoring devices. The next round of products might come in smart skin patches and other forms of wearable patient monitoring tools and smart textiles, according to the report.