The Next Outlook 2018
In The Next Outlook
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Wearable is the new mobile
The constant motion in technology, knowledge and society drives the
In the yearly-renewed trend analysis, The Next Organization selects the most important trends that will shake up the game in the year to come. This article focuses on the rapid development of wearable technologies and the way it is improving people’s lives for 2018.
Since the launch of the first iPhone in 2007 consumers
Wearable technologies refer to the technological innovations worn close to the body, on the body or within the body. Smartwatches and fitness trackers are already a household name, the next shift will be from strictly sport-oriented wearables towards integral life-improving products.
Wearables will make people’s lives more convenient and connected in three main areas, namely health, comfort and safety.
Health caring wearables
As life expectancy increases, people do what is on their hands to take care of their bodies and assure a long and healthy life. Technology is an important facilitator of this. Gadgets like smart-watches, -necklaces, -trinkets etc. help to keep a record of motion activities, heart rate, sleeping patterns and eating habits. Health-oriented wearables also make a great difference in the lives of people dealing with a disease. For example, the Steadiglove is a stabilizing glove that reduces hand tremors for people with Parkinson’s disease. Although a hand tremor is not life-threatening, it does make daily activities more difficult and can be an early sign of other degenerative conditions. Wearables such as the Steadiglove help people to stay active and independent, therefore contributing to their health in multiple levels.
“Smart casual” just got smarter
Wearable technology makes life easier. However, making life easy is not enough to convince consumers to actually use products. Today’s consumers are not only interested in the technical benefits they get from a product. They want the whole package: useful, fashionable, personal and sometimes even exclusive designer products that reflect who they are. Addressing consumer’s desire for visually attractive designs can help to overcome a significant adoption barrier for new products. Partnerships between tech companies and fashion brands are convincing audiences that wearables can be both functional as well as fashionable.
Technology added to a wearable can save lives. New and improved chip models have for example facilitated the development of applications such as clothing-embedded GPS for finding children or skiers when they are lost. Other innovations are being developed for targeting and early diagnosing diseases. The smart bra from Cycardia Health, or
The market demand for small wearable devices is rising rapidly and is expected to increase five-fold in the next three years. Moreover, it is still an emerging market with relatively few players and with high revenue potential. Major industry players like Apple and Google are already looking into wearable technologies as the next step for growth. The sky is the limit for the wearable technologies market in 2018.
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