- Wearable Technology
Wearable Technology helps us manage our lives
Wearable technology has grown to encompass everything from smartwatches to fitness and sports tracking devices, connected clothing, virtual reality headsets, and even gadgets you can use to track your pets. There are many options to accommodate fitness goals, help you manage a schedule, and provide useful data to improve overall health and wellness, and help you manage your life.
Wearable Technology is The Future
Along with a phone in your pocket, wearable technology is the new evolution in mobile gear, making communications more convenient, and helping you become the best version of yourself you can be.
Why would I need wearable tech?
Driving wearable technology is health, fitness, connectivity, and entertainment. Wearable tech can help you become more aware of your physical state, and keep you conveniently connected to the people, things, and experiences that you love. But there are several categories of wearable technology that go above and beyond these primary goals.
Smartwatches and accessories
Smartwatches are great replacements for a basic wristwatch, allowing you to keep your smartphone in your pocket while the information that’s important to you is at your fingertips. Some look like standard analog wristwatches, while others have large digital faces that make you feel like you’re James Bond. Some can sync with different smartphones, while others work exclusively with the iPhone or Google Android devices, or offer special connectivity features when used with either. The latest premium smartwatches add capabilities like control for smart home devices, support for voice AI services, like Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, SIM cards to be used independent of a phone, storage for music, and tap-and-pay abilities via a mobile wallet. Whether fashion is top-of-mind, function, sports tracking, or business, there’s a smartwatch to meet your needs. And accessories, like different bands, let you wear the same watch while working out that you might for a night out on the town.
Apple Watch and accessories
There’s an entire ecosystem of gear that can be used with an Apple Watch, ranging from charging docks and stands to waterproof casings. Get a stainless steel bracelet to fancy up the look of the watch, or even a travel storage box so you can transport accessories for a vacation. For Apple fans, the Watch is another component to add to the mix that can bring your home and on-the-go experiences together – from your iPhone to your HomeKit-enabled smart devices.
Fitness tracking and sports tech
At the core of all activity trackers is the ability to track steps and distance traveled, activity level, sports, sleep patterns, and calories burned. Heart rate data and smartphone notifications through slight vibrations, or full scrolling text, are found in the more premium models as well. Beyond fitness bands from brands like Fitbit, Garmin, Sony, Polar, this category also includes smart sports gear that can help you improve your game, like Zepp analyzer gloves for tracking your swings in golf, tennis, baseball, and more. There are also GPS watches for outdoor adventurers, smart clothing, and devices like the iSwimband that alerts parents if a child is under water for too long. Whether you’re trying to fulfill a resolution to lose weight, or just want to keep on top of your overall health and wellness, fitness trackers provide useful and actionable insights, and can be great motivators.
There are so many exciting options in virtual reality. For entry-level users who want to get familiar with VR, there are light headsets like the Insignia Viewer that work with a compatible smartphone, allowing you to immerse yourself in cool VR content. For gamers, and those looking for higher-end systems, there are premium headsets like Samsung Gear VR, and tethered premium headsets that connect to a PC, like the HTC Vive.
For enjoying games or virtual reality worlds, a simple headset to which you can attach your phone might be the way to go. If you’re big on gaming, or want to immerse yourself in lengthy VR sessions, you might want to opt for a more lightweight, comfortable headset, and a premium system that looks more realistic, and lets you get up and move around a room.
Augmented reality as the next evolution
Rather than take you to a completely virtual world, augmented reality uses your smartphone’s camera to bring virtual elements to your existing world, as figures come to life in front of you. This can taking gaming a new level in Pokemon GO, but has advantages like mobility, the ability to eliminate the headset, and being completely hands-free.
AI offers practical advantages, too. Get a better sense for how furniture might look in a room by seeing a couch or table in perspective, and playing with its location and orientation; or get a better grasp of exotic locations and landmarks in educational videos. The possibilities in the business world are endless, too, from virtual walk-throughs of new homes, to step-by-step instructional cooking videos, and detailed medical procedures.
Yes, wearables have even extended to furry friends through smart collars that communicate with apps to deliver data about your pet’s activity. Did Rover get enough exercise and/or rest today? Some let you see how your dog’s energy level compares to others of the same breed, while others have embedded cameras so you can see what your dog is seeing, and record video and photos. If your primary goal is location, look for one with GPS that notifies you if the pet leaves a specified zone, or helps you find its location if it runs off.
A “wearable” doesn’t technically have to be worn on your person: you can also “wear” an item tracker like the Tile or TrackR on your keys, purse, backpack, or other valuable to keep track of its location. Whether you’re forgetful or scatter-brained, travel often, or own a lot of valuable equipment, an item tracker is a great device for peace-of-mind.