Posted by Indusa Admin on March 15, 2016 8:23 am
Wearables. There are high chances you are wearing one right now. Gartner predicts that wearable market is forecast to grow from 70 million units in 2014 to 91 million units in 2016. And this includes not just smart watches but also smart glasses, fitness monitors, chest straps, and other smart garments. With the wearable buzz everywhere, you are probably wondering what the future looks like in consumer and business markets.
Wearables are becoming the next big thing in consumer electronic products. With advanced electronic capabilities that include software, sensors, and powerful computing capabilities, the wearable market is exploding. But what role do wearables play in the IoT space? While people mostly have just one wearable device on their body today, very soon they will have numerous devices including smart clothing that provides different functions and assists in data collection and information retrieval. In the IoT world, wearables will communicate with hundreds and thousands of other IoT enabled devices like computers, machines, sensors, and other mobile/wearable devices in homes, cars, and even in the work environment.
From merely a device perspective, wearables offer several benefits. They have the ability to exchange data with other devices, without requiring any human intervention. They can communicate with other sensors, wearables, smartphones, machines and even complete networks, access information in real-time and possess data-input capability as well as local storage capability. They offer constant, convenient, seamless, portable, and hands-free access to electronics and computers.
Wearables and the Enterprise of Things
The Enterprise of Things symbolizes the concept that IT infrastructure is no longer limited to data centers and computers, but extends to a myriad of connected devices that fall under the realm of IoT. Enterprise of Things (EoT) is touted to be the next big wave of opportunity for enterprises; EoT will encompass many different device types, many of which have not been developed yet. From embedded sensors to voice enabled, gesture controlled devices, EoT will impact nearly all companies across industries. Given the limitless possibilities of the EoT, companies must dedicate thoughtful consideration to the value and differentiation a device-centric strategy can offer them. With millions of devices connected today, it has become imperative to translate this network of devices into a business advantage.
Wearable technologies offer a considerable opportunity for businesses, both in terms of new markets and data collection and analysis. Retailers can use wearable devices to enhance shopping experiences and build strong relationships with customers by attaining insight into customer behavior; hospitals can improve patient health with smart wearables; advertisers can make well informed marketing decisions through data-analytics; and manufacturers can reduce device downtime through remote monitoring.
While smartwatches and fitness trackers are enjoying immense popularity around the world, have you ever wondered what remarkable uses wearable technology has in various industries? By combining wearable technology with big data and artificial intelligence, the unthinkable can be achieved. Let’s look at a few industry-wise implications that wearables will have in the coming years:
- Healthcare: Wearables in the healthcare industry currently have the ability to capture crucial patient data such as body temperature, heart rate, and sleep patterns. In the future, with advanced capabilities, healthcare practitioners operating in public and private sectors can have access to a vast database of continually updated patient data that will help them in correlating trends through measured parameters. Through wearables, doctors will be able to improve the accuracy of medical diagnosis, increase the average life expectancy, reduce the overall insurance and healthcare costs, and also help in increasing the GDP of the economy.
- Fitness: Future fitness wearables will have the ability to combine in-body sensors that measure the nutritional parameters of users and analyze those parameters to provide users with corresponding feedback. Users can receive real-time reports about their health and fitness, and get recommendations on what they should eat or how much they should exercise. Through wearables, users can also get notifications on what food items to purchase while at a supermarket, that meets their dietary requirements and also suggest medical supplements in case the user has any vitamin or mineral deficiency.
- Entertainment: The entertainment and media industry has one of the largest growth opportunities in the wearable market. Using wearables, media houses can make entertainment more immersive and fun. Users can be offered anywhere, anytime access to their favorite network on social media, giving them new and innovative ways of interacting with others. Wearables can offer a host of new platforms and devices that make gaming more engaging, both visually and physically.
- Manufacturing: With widespread adoption of wearables, people and machines can now communicate as equals; workers can share real-time process data gathered from smart devices with their peers without leaving the shop floor and have the data stored in the cloud for future analysis. Manufacturers can dynamically predict product demand, make production process efficient, remotely manage factory equipment, monitor manufacturing processes in real-time, optimize the energy utilization, and make the workplace safer by predicting and avoiding mishaps in time.
- Retail: Through the use of smart watches, digital eyewear, virtual reality handsets and smart clothing, businesses can obtain key information about the consumer and his or her buying behavior. Businesses can offer various services like in-store communication, 3D projections of products, virtual reality, store navigation, contactless card payment, theft prevention, and item information. Consumers can also receive rewards for being loyal customers, and enjoy a whole new shopping experience through impactful and timely marketing.
How companies use the humongous data garnered from wearable technologies will continue to evolve as new and improved technologies emerge. As Gartner predicts, there will be 25 billion Internet connected devices by 2020. The willingness of businesses to utilize this technology indicates that wearables are making their mark in the industry and are likely to continue to do so in the future. While many are already employing diverse strategies to make the most of wearables in the IoT space, the real growth of wearables will sky rocket as soon as businesses build new and innovative IoT applications that have not been heard of. By recognizing the impact of wearables in every industry, and keeping the user at the forefront of every business strategy, you can create new business opportunities and tread the path of competitive success.
About the Author – Seema Nair
Seema is a Mobility Project Manager at Indusa and has around 8 years of experience in enterprise and consumer facing mobility solutions. Being a Subject Matter Expert in enterprise mobility, she assist clients in defining mobility strategies and implementing the right mobility solutions for their business.
Contributing Writer: Neha Kumar