A survey by ABI Research predicts that 30 million wearable mobile health devices will have shipped in 2012, a figure which is up 37 percent on 2011 shipments.

The firm says interest is being driven by the inclusion of Bluetooth Smart Ready connectivity in many popular smartphones such as the Apple iPhone and Samsung Galaxy S III.

Popularity will continue to grow says ABI so that between 2011 and 2017, the market will grow at a CAGR of close to 40 percent.

The firm predicts device shipments of 160 million in 2017 with the vast majority coming from sports, fitness and wellness devices.

This is a slight decrease on ABI’s previous estimate which the company says  is because of lower than anticipated growth in wearable medical devices, rather than the fitness devices, according to lead analyst Jonathan Collins, speaking with Mobihealthnews.

In 2017, 60 percent of devices will be fitness devices while 23 percent will be for home monitoring for older people. Seven percent will be devices for remote monitoring of patients, typically with a chronic disease. Another seven percent will be for professional on-site healthcare.