According to a new research report from the IoT analyst firm Berg Insight, around 7.8 million people in Europe were using connected care solutions at the end of 2018.
The figure refers to users of traditional telecare, next-generation telecare and telehealth solutions in the EU28+2 countries.
Until 2024, Berg Insight forecasts that the number of connected care users will grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 14.1 percent to reach 17.3 million.
Traditional telecare is currently the largest and most mature of the three market segments, but the next-generation telecare and telehealth market segments are expected to have a higher growth rate in the next years.
Berg Insight expects that traditional telecare will be overtaken by next-generation telecare as the largest segment with a forecasted 8.3 million users in 2024. However, traditional telecare will follow with 6.2 million users and telehealth with 5.6 million users at the end of the forecast period.
The traditional telecare equipment market in Europe is highly consolidated. The two major players – Tunstall and Legrand – hold leading positions in nearly all markets even though they are challenged by local players such as Doro and TeleAlarm. The next-generation telecare market is on the other hand more fragmented. In addition to the leading telecare equipment vendors, companies active in the next-generation market include specialised providers such as Essence Group, Just Checking, Vitalbase and Vivago in activity monitoring; Everon, Libify, Oysta Technology, SmartLife Care and Smartwatcher in mobile telecare; and Evondos, Innospense and MediRätt in medication compliance monitoring.
The telehealth market is similarly a fragmented market that is evolving quickly and includes both start-ups and well-established solution providers such as BodyTel, Capsule Technologies, Comarch, eDevice, Luscii, OpenTeleHealth and SHL Telemedicine.
The European connected care industry is facing major changes that will reshape the competitive environment for solution vendors and service providers during the coming years. One of the main developments is the ongoing digitalisation of telephone networks around Europe. Large-scale replacements of telecare equipment will be needed as analogue devices do not function reliably on digitalised networks. At the same time, the market has seen new types of solutions that can advance the delivery of care to the next level. This includes next-generation telecare systems with new functions and more attractive design, as well as integrated solutions that enable a combined delivery of telecare and telehealth services. While the solutions are improving year-by-year, the adoption of next-generation telecare and telehealth solutions is still modest.
Sebastian Hellström, IoT Analyst at Berg Insight, said:
“Connected care actors want to innovate and provide better solutions for people, but they are held back by the slow adoption in public care systems in Europe.”
He adds that positive signs can be seen in countries such as Denmark, Norway, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom where insurers, legislators and national health systems have taken steps to implement next-generation telecare and telehealth solutions at a larger scale.