Wearable gadgets are everywhere these days. They are your activity trackers and your apply watches. Who would have thought that technology would have advanced so much that we would now be wearing it! With this gadgets, it is not just about how high-tech they are, as they are also a fashion statement. They represent part of you and your personality, whether that is your smart watch or your case for your smartphone. For us to want to own them, they need to look as good as they function.
What exactly is wearable technology- how can it be defined? Well, it is something technological that enables your body to become interactive. Something that fuses the latest technology with your body. It is the thing that works with our bodies to make our lives easier. Just as we wear hat to keep the sun from our heads, or sweaters to keep us warm we wear these technologies to help us in other ways. They help us to communicate with others, to entertain ourselves, to keep track of our health and fitness and to get to know our bodies. When you think of wearable technology, you may think of clunky devices with complicated circuits and batteries- however, this is not necessarily true. A new type of science has recently emerged. A fiber science, in which the material of the clothing is the functioning technology.
There is an ever growing market for this kind of technology. Remote cardiac monitoring services are forecasted to reach $867 million in 2016, as a result of selling 13.45 million devices. Smartwatches are forecasted at reaching 1.23 million in sales with 40% of the current U.S consumer market interested in purchasing one. Overall, the market for wearable technology is huge- the market value is expected to reach $12,642 million in 2018. With such a huge demand for wearable technology, let’s take a look at some of the best wearable gadgets on the market today.
Rusty’s Wired Series
Rusty clothing line has made use of the elastic strings of the hood, by using them as earphones. Therefore, you do not have to grab the tangled earphones from the bottom of your bag, or carry around those big over ear phones that take up so much space. You don’t have to remember to pick up your earphones when wearing this hooded jacket, as you will always have it with you! There is a headphone jack in one of the side pockets for you to plug your music device into. Even better- the earphones are machine washable. How much easier could that be?
With the number of women in business ever increasing, this is certainly one on trend device. Swarovski has created an elegant and beautiful necklace, a heart shaped studded with crystals, which houses a 4GB USB drive. The necklace comes in Violet and Light Rose. Carry your business close to your heart!
In the same vain as the USB necklace, USB cufflinks were created for business attire. These cufflinks carry less data, with only 2GB of storage, yet are just as stylish coming in gold and gunmetal gray. You can also has the cufflinks engraved.
There are many I-accessories on the market, however I believe that this one is the most practical. IWallet is not like any other ordinary wallet. To begin with, it is not a leather wallet that will become worn and torn. Instead, it is made from a strong casing- either carbon fiber or aluminum shell, whichever you prefer. The wallet has biometric access and Bluetooth technology. This is the most secure wallet that money can buy. The wallet is linked with your phone, and if your phone and wallet and too far apart- about 10-15 feet- your phone will let off an alarm, letting you know that either you have misplaced your phone/wallet or someone has tried to pickpocket you.
BEARtek was a Kickstarter campaign that became a great business. They have created gloves that can communicate with your phone via Bluetooth. The gloves are heavy duty durable gloves, for riding motorcycles or skiing/snowboarding. Until now you could not get to your phone without taking off your gloves, but BEARtek has changed that. The gloves have six touch points, and you can use these touch points to answer your phone and control your music.
So what wearable technologies can we expect to see in the future?
As aforementioned, we will see the true capabilities of fiber, and the creation of fiber electronics. As material sciences and nanotech processes advance, circuits can be constructed within textiles and fabrics. This advancement means that the technologies will become available to be worn all over the body. At present, we wear these technologies on our hands, our wrists and our heads. However, once the technology is integrated with the fiber, it will become invisible to the unknown eye, and be at any point of your body. The technology will be in our jewelry, our headbands, our shoes and our clothes. We have already seen such designs come to life with the Ralph Lauren biometric smart shirt, which was debuted at the US open last year. The shirt is full of sensors that record and monitor heart rate, stress levels and movement. Yet this is not where it ends- wearable technologies are going to advance even further and become more invasive so that they are no longer worn but are a part of us- with microchip implants and smart tattoos.
The largest market for wearable technologies at the moment is the health and fitness market, with the technologies being used to track levels within your body and record your progress. Yet the technologies will soon be breaking more market areas. One aspect that will become popular is a wearable technology for gamers. This will create a more immersive experience for online gamers, combining the real world with the created online world, using the gamers sensory inputs to navigate through their alternate realities. There are going to be smart socks that monitor your exercise to let you know if you are going to injure yourself through your technique, and smart sports bras to monitor heart rate.
Technology can be used in retail, using virtual mirrors to scan your body shape and project clothes onto you, so that you don’t even have to try on the garments to see how they look in your body. In short- wearable technology is going through drastic changes that we cannot even begin to comprehend. Imagine a world where you have an outfit tracker to tell you wear your clothes are, and you wear solar clothes that can recharge your phone. This world is not too far away.