Consumer wearable technology has existed for decades. A look back to the computer watches from the 1970's and 80's shows an anticipation of today's smart watches, minus the global web. Sensor technology has enabled the data-intensive Internet of Things economy to provide digitized contextual meaning in a highly personalized way. Wearables and their capacity for creating a feedback loop with the user ("circular intelligence") play a critical role in making this possible. However, there are hurdles related to privacy and the perceived intrusive nature of personal tracking that need to be addressed on a continuing basis.
In Brief: What are Wearables?
"Wearables" is a catch-all term referring to a range of "smart" or "intelligent" devices worn by an individual or kept close to the body in the form of a clip-on. Popular product applications include watches, jewelry, clothing, implants, and headsets (both Virtual and Augmented Reality). Wearables communicate with the larger virtual world through wireless Bluetooth connectivity. This technology is seeing early success with health and fitness analytics in particular.
Using Wearable Technology
There is considerable buzz surrounding wearables, with many market segments exploring ways to apply the technology to their unique needs such as warehouse stock management, environmental control systems, chronic health management, retail CRM, location mapping, and point-of-sale transactions.
As with any technology, ongoing due diligence is required to secure all stakeholders against cyber security breaches and the adherence to guidelines for transmitting sensitive intellectual property assets. If the current momentum behind wearables and the larger Internet of Things ecosystem continues to merge the digital with the physical world, society may expect what was once science fiction to meaningfully influence the relationships of everyday lives. To learn more, please visit AIG Internet of Things.