Press release

Almost half of wearables are unused

Press release 8 August 2016

The results of this year’s DKV Report, “How healthy is Germany?”, show that almost half of all people who own a fitness tracker do not use it or have stopped using it. Experts from GfK Nuremburg surveyed a total of 2,830 people in Germany for the representative DKV Report. Ingo Froböse, Professor at the German Sport University Cologne, was the Scientific Director of this Report.

“It’s a clear indication for us: the majority of people in Germany do not see the need to use wearables”, explained Clemens Muth, Chairman of the Board of Management at DKV. About six percent of those surveyed said that they have a fitness tracker. These people are mainly young, exercise often, and feel healthier than average. Three out of ten people who own a wearable no longer use it, and 16 have never put it on. This means that only around half of those who own a fitness tracker actually use it. 89 percent of people surveyed were not interested in buying a fitness tracker and only five percent said they would consider buying one in the future.

The DKV Report also looked into why so many wearables are unused. For the main part, people find them too difficult to use (19 percent) or they are annoying (18 percent). 15 percent feel that the tracker does not give them any motivation, whilst another 15 percent believe they are unnecessary. 12 percent are simply bored of them. There are huge differences in reasons given by men and women. Men find that they are too difficult to use or that they do not think that they are motivating. In contrast, women say that they either have no time to use the device, or that they have lost it.

DKV: wearables especially for the medical sector

“We believe that wearables don’t interest healthy people who have an average desire to exercise”, said Clemens Muth. This is different for people who have been recommended to use one by a doctor to monitor particular bodily functions or who suffer from a chronic illness. In this respect, wearables could be useful in the future: “If a tracker is able to measure pulse and blood pressure reliably and to record it automatically, it can make a patient’s life a lot easier.” A prerequisite is, however, that the wearable will actually deliver medically accurate measurements.

Wearables with motion detector and pedometer functions can also be interesting in certain stages of life. “Anyone who is overweight or is suffering from high blood pressure can find a wearable very helpful when making lifestyle changes”, explained Clemens Muth. DKV has already had good experiences with wearables in its health programmes. “The trackers are intended to supplement personal support with a coach”, according to Muth.

An overview of the 2016 DKV report:
Scientific Directors Prof. Ingo Froböse and Dr. Birgit Sperlich, Zentrum für Gesundheit, German Sport University Cologne,
CAT1 telephone survey  GfK Nuremberg
Number of participants 2,830
Survey period 2 March to 1 April 2016
Publication, graphics 2016 DKV Report, “How healthy is Germany?”, 48 pages, PDF file for download in German from

For further information, please contact:

Sybille Schneider

Media Relations
Sybille Schneider

Tel +49 211 477-5187
Fax +49 211 477-3113

About DKV
For over 80 years, the DKV has been a pioneer in the industry with needs-orientated and innovative products. The health specialist provides comprehensive health and nursing care insurance coverage, as well as health care services to customers in private and state health insurance, and organises high-quality medical care. In 2015, the company recorded a premium income of 4.8 billion euros.
DKV is the health insurance specialist of the ERGO Group and thus part of Munich Re, one of the world's leading reinsurers and risk carriers.  
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This press release contains forward-looking statements that are based on current assumptions and forecasts of the management of DKV Deutsche Krankenversicherung. Known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors could lead to material differences between the forward-looking statements given here and the actual development, in particular the results, financial situation and performance of our Company. The Company assumes no liability to update these forwardlooking statements or to conform them to future events or developments.

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