Just 7% of 16- to 24-year-olds own wearable tech, according to GfK, and only 6% of the UK population.
The former group is the most receptive to the idea of wearing a connected device rather than carrying a smartphone, with 60% finding it appealing.
Price is an object for respondents, especially 16- to 24-year-olds. The research found that the £150-£200 price range of a smartwatch meant that across all groups purchase intention fell from 24% to 12%. The figure drops from 16% to 7% for tech glasses like Google Glass (priced £400-£600). Among 16- to 24-year-olds, intention to purchase suffers its biggest drop, from 32% to 10%.
GfK’s research revealed that awareness of products including Google Glass, Sony Smartwatch, Samsung Galaxy Gear. Nike Fuelband and Pebble ranges from 50% to 18%, and is particularly high among men in the under-45 age group.
Johanna Martin of GfK said: "To get the market moving manufacturers need to communicate tangible lifestyle benefits and offer a sleek design – but even then, any wearable tech device will only succeed if it’s priced right.
"Our research suggests that the current price points are a barrier, restricting wearable tech to an older, more affluent audience.
"So while consumer awareness and interest is definitely there, we are still waiting for the launch of that must-have wearable tech device for Christmas 2013."