Some reports suggest that wearable technology is “over,” but Wearables Insider says otherwise. While the article by Dan Rosenbaum admits that 2016 was challenging, and that “the wristband part of the industry has consolidated and stratified.” But 2017 will have a new focus.
This year, health and industrial applications of wearables will become commonplace and mainstream. This means “the placement of sensors in different places on the body and, more importantly, the maturation of software that can make a difference.
The piece parts of wearables (sensors, batteries, radios, displays) are, generally, commodities, with some exceptions. “The software that drives them, however, is unique from device to device,” Rosenbaum says. “It’s pretty simple to decide which sensor to use to count movement, and how to show that in an app. It’s far more complicated and resource-intensive to figure which sensor to use to unobtrusively gather bodily fluids and analyze them accurately.”
Although the wearables industry has been building “sophisticated toys,” with some based on questionable science, in 2017 serious science and applications will rise to the top, offering new products for important applications, particularly in medical settings.
Additionally, there will be a growing acceptance of augmented reality products – again, with the high quality, well-researched technology coming to the fore. “A lot of industrial manufacturers having finished trials of wearables and are moving into actual deployments, which will help bring down the very high cost of industrial AR visors because of the intense economies of scale that apply to any tech product,” says Rosenbaum.