2014 is the year of wearable with many of the biggest technology conferences flooded with new and innovative wearable technology (i.e. clothing and accessories that incorporate computer and advanced electronic technologies).
Brands such as Nike, Google, Samsung and Apple are all focused on launching products that satisfy consumer awareness and growing demand for wearable technology products.
Smart watches have led the way in this space but they are now being joined by a new wave of products with technology incorporated into clips for your waistband, sensors for your pocket, connected trainers and glasses frames.
Google Glass of the most talked about in the wearable technology space since its recognition by Time Magazine at the end of 2012. It is a hands-free, head-mounted intelligent device that can be worn by users as ‘wearable computing’ eyewear.
There are a number of wearables on the market that act as an information companion to a smartphone. The Samsung Galaxy Gear was probably the most visible wearable along with the Sony SmartWatch and the Kickstarter-launched Pebble. The market is full of anticipation for the Apple iWatch which is due to be unveiled later this month.
Nike Fuelband and Fitbit
Fitness is an area that has really taken off for wearables with heart rate monitors, exercise trackers and step counters all being popular items with consumers. In particular, the Nike Fuelband and Fitbit range of trackers have enjoyed success in this field but competition in this market is expected to increase by the end of the year.
Taking up less space on the body than a smartwatch or bracelet, MOTA has unveiled the SmartRing that promises the same kind of smartphone notification interactivity. It has been designed as a notifications hub for your finger, delivering updates when you have new text messages, email, calendar events and incoming calls. It is optimised for both Android and iOS devices and can also deliver Twitter and Facebook notifications.
The inventiveness of designers and developers coupled with the investment and backing of well known brands could soon see wearable technology become a functioning part of our everyday lives and there is no doubt that it will continue to be one of the key growth areas in 2014 and beyond.