New Samsung Gear 2 smartwatch (L) and Gear Fit fitness band are displayed at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona February 23, 2014.(REUTERS/Albert Gea)
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Smartphone-connected watches and bracelets have emerged as the technological phenomenon for 2014 as manufacturers rush for new sources of revenues.Global smartphone sales surged 42.3 percent to 968 million units last year, powered by demand for cheaper devices in developing markets, according to industry research group Gartner Inc.Research house Canalys predicts sales of connected bracelets and watches, however, will surge to 17 million units this year, and 45 million in 2017 .Excluding computers, phones and tablets, there were 175 million connected objects in 2013, a market worth 24.2 billion euros ($33.0 billion), according to research house Idate.That figure is predicted to rise to 470 million objects generating revenue of 40 billion euros by 2017, Idate said.Indeed, research house Gartner Inc. predicts that global mobile advertising will grow from an expected $18 billion this year to $42 billion in just three years, helped in part by geolocation-based publicity drawing in smaller, local advertisers.
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