Electronic Design
Where Will Wearables Find Their True Calling?

Where Will Wearables Find Their True Calling?

Wearables will find their true calling in four verticals that push beyond the general consumer market.

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Robert Thompson, Chief Enablement Architect, Freescale Semiconductor

We’ve all seen the early adopters sporting Google Glass, an Apple Watch, or any variety of fitness tracker. With the current state of the wearables industry, it is sometimes hard to see the quantifiable benefits they bring to users. When perspective flips from the consumer to the enterprise, things get interesting.

A report by Deloitte Research found that the enterprise will be more likely to recognize the near-term value of the Internet of Things (IoT) and wearables, than the consumer. Wearables in the enterprise will have a focus on efficiency and assist in saving time, money, and effort on a massive scale. Let’s take a look at the top four enterprises in which wearables can make the greatest impact.

Who Said Wearables Can’t Save Lives?
Healthcare is no rookie when it comes to wearables. This sector pushes the boundaries of technology to save lives and increase quality of life. The ability of wearables to consistently monitor your body will lead to more preventive care and lower the rate of hospital reentry.

This will also lead to better productivity, efficiency, and reporting for healthcare facilities given the potential impact on medical assessment, diagnosis, and treatment. With inventions such as continuous glucose pumps, wireless insulin monitors, and smart contact lenses, wearables in the medical enterprise will cement their place as life-changing technology.

Wearables for the Win
Sports franchises rely on you and other fans watching your favorite athletes play and succeed. Athletes are constantly pushing their bodies to perform at their best. However, age and improper care often leave athletes injured and teams less effective. 

A player is not benefiting his or her team by riding the bench. No matter how hard athletes try to avoid injuries, they will always be part of the game. However, wearables can help prevent them.

Fitbit Surge fitness tracker

Beyond the fitness tracker, wearables could be worn to detect weaknesses in muscles that could lead to strains, pulls, or tears. Or, they could be used to detect a concussion immediately.  Wearables could accurately tell when an injury is fully healed and when it’s safe for an athlete to return to play.

The adoption of wearable technology in sports could lead to a safer and more enjoyable sporting environment for both the players and the fans.

Humans and Wearables: An Industrial Dream
During the Industrial Revolution, the assembly line birthed a whole new approach to productivity. Manufacturers today are once again reinventing the production line by introducing workers to assistive wearable technology. Devices like hand scanners or speech-recognition headsets can help accomplish remedial tasks more efficiently, saving time while simultaneously boosting accuracy. Today, wearables like these are used in fulfillment centers like Amazon, but the future will extend to pharmacies and retail stores.

A New Form of Play

Video games have always been at the forefront of new innovative ways to use technology, and wearables are no exception. New technologies like the Oculus Rift and Microsoft’s Hololens are pushing the envelope of virtual reality, creating a whole new meaning to the term immersive. A recent announcement from Nintendo has brought the popular Pokemon series into the real world through augmented reality using smartphones and a wearable.

Oculus Rift virtual-reality system

As wearables continue to evolve and shape an exciting future, there will always be a need to increase productivity and efficiency. By combining science with business, it allows us to take strides to making people happier, healthier, smarter, and safer. Wearable technology minimizes remedial tasks and opens up broad new horizons for industry to grow and succeed in the IoT world.  You may soon find wearables moving beyond the sidewalks and coffee shops. They could find their way into doctor’s offices to help save lives, or baseball stadiums to change the way games are play, or factories to build safety and efficiency into every step of the process.

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