Have you woken up some of those mornings when you feel you have to ensure you put on non color clashing clothes from head to toe? Perhaps most men especially hear in Africa we are not that self conscious on what we wear unlike our female counterparts, but come the 21 century we have seen an avalanche of metro sexual fashion conscious youth. In a blend of technology most of the big tech companies have realized that wearable technologies are going to be the next cash cow for them and it seems that the era of innovation of mobile smartphones will be on a decline.
Apple, Google, Samsung, Microsoft and LG all planning to come out with a smart watch that will change the industry, despite the fact that the pebble and Sony smart watches already exist on the market. We have had Google show off its wearable shoes that talk, and it’s clear this is the direction we are taking.
“Why is now the right time for wearable technologies?”
I feel that there is a convergence of high-tech and ability to create small devices and also understanding physiological measures to capture them and convey them in a more useful way. It’s basically an intersection of the understanding of ourselves and the technology that allows us to do it. So now it’s the right time for wearables simply because miniaturization
of technology is getting to a stage in that we can take a computer that used to sit on a desk into our pockets, our wrists or our heads. Seems people are starting to get bored of the smartphone that used to be cool and interesting a few years ago. Since we all know what they can do as we have lived with them and played with them for a while now. People want new toys and wearables are good toys.
“What does wearable technology say about the wearer?”
The digital lifestyle, passion or addiction with all things digital have all really impacted on the lifestyle and these are now starting to become lifestyle products. For some people it’s more of a tech savvy fashion statement and they have to show the world that they have a fashionable device. And on the other end for those who would put on tech devices for sports purposes would be showing that they are extreme athletes. It’s axiomatic that such trends have not caught up that much in Africa as much as it is in the west and I think that will change in a short time once they become main stream and affordable the way smartphones are today. Some people may argue that wearables say nothing about the user because they are out of the way and they not intrusive and they don’t make you look “techy” unlike the bulky wearable technologies that existed 10 years ago that made one look like a robot and I don’t think that what people want.
“How will wearable technologies change our lives?”
At this point we can’t even imagine, because at this point because what’s really new about wearables is the ability to unlock data that is generated in our physical bodies and that something totally new in the computing era. It’s a concept that was impossible to implement in PCs, tablet or even smartphones. The things that can be done with the data gathered by this wearable technology are too big to determine. Currently most of the wearable technology is focused on health and fitness space, tomorrow it could be identity validation, productivity, social networking, shopping, for sure the sky is the limit for what these devices could do. On a deeply scientific point of view wearables will start to merge atoms and bits as they will merge bodies and technology on a mass market scale in a way that is much more fundamental than before. We expect lots of ramifications but wearable technology is expected to change society and fashion trends. Interacting with these wearables we expect to get feedback from and they will also inspire us to be more active, giving us more real-time data and hopefully they will make us feel better and that’s the ultimate goal.
When you enter a taxi or go to a coffee shop can now days, most people are busy on their gadgets, listening to music or surfing the web, we hope that wearable tech will lessen the time we spend with machines and increase the amount of time we spend with people. Is your next gadget a smart watch, smart glass, or fitness device?