High-end wearables have emerged from last year’s market slump and are taking over from basic fitness trackers.

This time last year the forecast for wearables was gloomy.

Research firm eMarketer had slashed its 2016 wearables growth outlook from 60 percent to just under 25 percent. The smartwatch market had declined more than 51 percent in the third quarter of 2016, according to market researcher IDC. Wearable maker Pebble sold itself to rival Fitbit, and Jawbone all but disappeared. The general opinion was that wearables were dead.

But the clouds hanging over the market began to clear this year, indicating brighter days ahead. In September, IDC reported shipments of wearable devices would rise 16.6 percent and forecast double-digit growth through 2021. It turns out the wearables market isn’t dying. It’s evolving.

“What we’re seeing here is a transition from basic to smart,” says IDC analyst Ramon Llamas. “That’s a reflection of not only what vendors are willing to develop their devices toward, but it’s also an indication as to what end user expectations [are] about these devices.”

In other words, we want our devices to do more than just tell us how many steps we’ve taken today. We want them to give us the latest news, turn on our car or ping us with email and social media notifications. As wearables get smarter, they’ll get more useful and, potentially, become a crucial part of our lives.

Wearables are maturing from fitness trackers to health monitors that can detect problems such as hypertension and sleep apnea, flag potentially dangerousheart conditions and even alert us we’re getting sick before the symptoms show. Greater integration with voice assistants like Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri can help with everyday tasks like setting reminders and timers, making restaurant reservations, sending text messages and querying the internet (like finding the number of ounces in a liter). All this added functionality could make smartwatches more ubiquitous — something we’ll actually keep wearing instead of abandoning after a few months.

“I think we’re at an interesting turning point where there are more smart devices coming out and grabbing attention than we’ll see from their basic wearable counterparts,” says Llamas.