Friday, August 22, 2014

Now Trending: Smart Watches

The Apple iWatch, the Google Gem, the GearFit … soon it may seem like every person you know has a piece of technology on their wrist. New research from Parks Associates confirms this, showing that smart watch sales will reach an all time high in 2014, with 18 million units sold worldwide. Projections estimate that by 2018, global sales will hit 347 million units.

Smart watches are watches that also allow users to track their fitness levels, read messages, check email, and do many other things without having to pull a smart phone from their pockets. Most importantly in the health world, smart watches allow people to track their fitness levels, and use that data to understand their health.

Most smart watches serve as companion devices to a smart phone, for ease with data syncing, which means that they can serve as a data gateway to share fitness information with health coaches, fitness trainers, and physicians. Eventually, smart watches may contribute valuable patient information to electronic medical records (EMRs), or to other wearable devices like Google Glass.

The smart watch also represents a growing need for crossover devices in healthcare, incorporating multiple user needs into one easy and reliable device. “As a dominant wearable category, the smart watch has the potential to integrate many unique functions to simplify consumers’ lives – health and fitness tracking is one of them, so are smart home and mobile payment functions,” says Harry Wang, director of mobile and health research at Parks Associates. “These use cases will turn consumer skepticism into enthusiasm and power this new device category into the mainstream.”

From the article, "Now Trending: Smart Watches" by Soniya Shah. 

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