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5 Most Important Wearable Technology Trends for 2016

The era of wearable technology is here! Even though the year 2014 was hailed to be the “Year of Wearables”, the trend continued to grow strong in 2015, and it is going to be in greater focus this year too. There has been an explosion of startups coming up with innovative wearable technology that took the consumer market by storm. It is also worth noting here that military personnel, businesses, law enforcement officials andmedical professionals have all been using wearable technology for years - in one form or the other. Never has this been so popular in the private consumer market until in the recent years, and now you can see the insurgence of wearable technology in every niche of life; for example, fitness and health, home use, privacy and security, watches, jewelry and other accessories - there is not an area in life where wearable technology has not made a deep impact. It is not possible to list all the wearable technology of recent times, so let us examine 5 important ones that will remain strong in 2016.

1. Smart Clothes

You must be familiar with Internet of Things, now this year, you are going to hear more of “Internet of Body”, where people are wearing clothes with sensors attached/embedded to them. The idea of smart clothes has been around for some time, in one form or the other. They were more fitness-focused and most of them were pretty heavy for daily wear. If you would like to slip on a smart T-shirt or wear a smart suit, then this would be the year for it. The main companies behind smart clothes are Samsung, Hexo Skin, Under Armour, OMSignal and of course, Google. Now smart clothes look like normal clothes and when you have NFC buttons hidden within the outfit, you will not feel the difference. Sensors are placed inside the clothing where electrical signals can be detected and they can be used for detection, transmission and even protection of the wearer. Companies have gone several steps further and have begun to make clothes that understand the body of the wearer and make choices based on the data entered in them.

2. Smart Shoes

Some famous brands like Under Armour, Xiaomi and Adidas have developed smart shoes to help runners track their movements and check their fitness status. How many times have you run marathons only to realize that you have forgotten to activate the app on your smartphones? This has prevented you from tracking your fitness regime, right? How many times did your phone run out of power and prevented you from checking how far you have run and the number of calories you have burnt? Come to think of it, the technology of these shoes is very simple. They have lightweight dime-sized chips embedded in them and this would get activated when you move the shoe. The batteries in these shoes last long, some last as long as three years, probably till the life of the shoe. As soon as the shoe senses that you are running, it will measure your stride dynamics and immediately detect your statistics with amazing alacrity. The shoes are designed to keep detecting for short stops but when your take a break of more than 3 minutes, it will shut itself down. And, if you start running again, that will be calculated as a new run.

3. Fitness Trackers

The accuracy of fitness trackers has increased considerably and the major players in the market are Xiaomi, Garmin, Fitbit and Misfit to name a few. The quality and performance of these fitness trackers would of course be dependent on how much you are ready to spend on them and the features you want them to be integrated with. The wearable tech that you choose for your fitness requirements could be in the form of bracelet, watches or clip-ons. Everyday new trackers seem to come into horizon, so it is actually a difficult choice when you are in the market for one. But one thing is guaranteed - with so many fitness trackers around and in different price ranges, the motivation to exercise has increased considerably. People exercise, keep themselves fit and get motivated when they see their fitness information on these apps. For example, Strava is a cycling app that would tell you how many kilometers you have biked, the calories burned, you heart rate, elevation gain and so on. These apps actually inspire people to workout more. The advent of Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology has brought with it an advancement in the field of healthcare as well. BLE enabled wearable trackers enable doctors and hospitals to remotely monitor the health of the patient and keep track of their vitals. You might be interested in a Free Whitepaper on the Use of BLE in Healthcare Applications for more infomation on the same.

4. Smart Glasses with AR

Smart glasses with Augmented Reality are making a huge impact on various industries including engineering, manufacturing, oil and gas industry. A popular smart glass in the industry is Google Glass. Smart glasses are no longer bulky, but lightweight, very easy to carry, and a combination of am app-based computer and spectacles. The modern version of smart glasses are more like smart contact lenses. Mounted on the head and with reflected projected images, users can get an image of augmented reality with smart glasses.

5. Sleep Trackers

Your fitness quotient largely relies on your body getting its beauty sleep. Most of the time, people do not really get the sleep their body requires, and this eventually leads to poor performance at work and burn out. Now you can track how much time you're really asleep through sleep trackers. These trackers not only help you enjoy improved sleep, but can also gauge the quality of your sleep and adjust the environment (ambiance of the room in which you sleep) by monitoring how good it is for a restful sleep. With sleep trackers, you will no longer feel groggy in the mornings because you can gauge just how much time you need to sleep to feel rested and refreshed. These trackers come integrated with smart alarms, so instead of the harsh and jolting sounds of the regular alarm, you will wake up during the lightest part of your sleep cycle. Some sleep trackers are integrated with smart features that would tell you about your sleep patterns and how your sleep fluctuates over a period of time. This is definitely a smart and wearable app that will remain in huge demand in 2016.

Smart wearable technology is definitely expected to make life easier for us in 2016. We can only wait and see how this futuristic technology is going to evolve during the months ahead. Interested to know how this futuristic technology can impact your business? We'd be happy to help!

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Free Whitepaper: Use of BLE in Healthcare Applications


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