Wearable technology has been around for some time now and smartwatches are becoming increasingly accessible, but we’re not quite at the point yet where wearing smart glasses and smart clothes is commonplace. But, does that mean we never will?
Here we take a look at the future of wearable technology and the products that are set to hit the mainstream in 2018.
Technological Jewellery Like Smart Rings
So, we have smart watches, but what about other jewellery? Well, there has been rumours for years, but smart rings are officially set to hit the market this year. With many of the capabilities of a Fitbit, these rings will provide an even smaller alternative to wearable tech.
(image: Oura Ring)
One example is the Oura ring – a sleep tracker, heart rate monitor, and smart ring, which is designed to be worn around the clock with little disruption to everyday life. There’s also the Motiv, which offers round-the-clock monitoring of everything from the number of calories burned to how long you have slept, all from a waterproof and Bluetooth-enabled ring.
Combining the functionality of one of these smart rings with that of a voice-activated device, as kickstarter project ORII does, could reduce the need for multiple devices all together.
Hearable Ear Sensors
What if the future of wearable technology was hearable? For example, headphones or similar gadgets that not only play music, but do so much more.
Clip&Talk Health is a new project that was seeking backing to create just this kind of device last year. The clip that looks similar to a Bluetooth handsfree device, would be able measure heart rate, calories, steps, and much more, as well as listen to music, engage in calls and read incoming texts.
Samsung also has their own version of this – the Gear IconX. Whereas products like the Here One from Here Plus utilises ear-based audio feedback for coaching and voice-assistant purposes. Whatever their capabilities, we think hearables could do well in future as wearing earphones is now like second nature to many of us.
Tech That Blends In: Invisibles
Of course, not all tech is based around multiple functionalities. Others are about design and how they stand out. Well, new wearable technology in 2018 could well focus more on the opposite of standing out and rather going unnoticed instead.
Invisibles are wearables that combat the dichotomy fashion-conscious tech-minded consumers have by making wearables as invisible as possible.
Some brands are said to be experimenting with connected temporary tattoos. Microsoft for one has been researching this with their Tattio projects which is studying materials and how they would work in this context. Whereas AmpStrip is a seven-day heart rate and activity tracker which sticks to the body like a plaster, and Lechal haptic inner soles can be hidden in your shoes and linked to your smartphone for vibration notifications.
Intrigued by the idea of future wearable advertising capabilities?
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