3 Wearable Technology Trends You Shouldn’t Ignore

There is literally no limit to the profit potential offered by starting a technology company that specializes in developing wearable tech. The wearable tech industry is expected to exceed $4-billion dollars in 2017 and grow another ~$5.5 billion in 2018. If those numbers are achieved, that will mean the wearable technology niche will have doubled revenues in under two years, and 6X’d the numbers from only 5 years ago (source).

Runner and wearable tech

Labelling such an opportunity as nothing more than a fad is a big mistake. In the United States alone, some 40% of consumers are currently interested in buying a smartwatch to help manage their various needs and life goals.

Wearable Technology Nothing New to the Market

Wearable tech can be traced back several hundred years to the 1300s, when the first eyeglasses were released. A few hundred years later, in the 1600s, the very first wearable watches were invented (see Nuremberg Eggs).

Several other forms of wearable technology soon followed, culminating with hoards of examples in the 20th Century including hearing aids, calculator watches, portable music players, and much more.

Skip ahead to the 21st Century and the area of wearable tech is innovating at blinding speeds. Wearable tech like the Apple Watch, Vuzix Blade, and Oculus Rift VRware are making it possible to be connected with the world, bodily vital signs, and even immerse oneself in the booming world of virtual reality with simple-to-use, relatively inexpensive smart devices.

Wearable technology applications

Based on their professional observations, our friends at Grace College Online Master of Business Administration offer the following applications of wearable technology:

1. Fitness/Wellness

Apple Watch

Have you ever wondered why Apple pushes the luxury appeal of their Apple Smartwatch so aggressively? It’s because they know nearly a third of the buying market earns over $100k a year. Ignoring this trend means leaving some serious profit potential untouched.

The fitness and wellness area of wearable tech is ripe for the picking. There’s already so much out there, yet so much that remains undone. From fitness band trackers from companies to Garmin, Fitbit, and Misfit – to smartshoes like the Speedform lineup from Under Armour.

2. Virtual Reality (VR)

Samsung Gear

There are currently a lot of companies fighting for their space in the wearable VR market. Everything from glasses and goggles that immerse users directly into their online work or a video game, to VR goggles that help teach kids to drive – the right way!

While it might seem sad that we’re moving toward a place where the disassociation created by smartphones will pale in comparison with what’s to come, there’s no denying that the vast majority want this trend to continue growing and improving.

3. Healthcare (Implantable Tech)

Implantable healthcare tech is a definite game-changer for many consumers. And, thus it’s something that all entrepreneurs should consider moving forward. Cochlear implants to treat deafness and other hearing-related ailments have been around for years.

Now science is pushing forward with implants that can track everything from how much sugar/insulin is in the bloodstream for treating diabetes, to implanting tech in the brain to treat paralysis; eye implants to reverse blindness; chips that connect your brain to computers that monitor a variety of vitals; implants to prevent pregnancy; right on to printable smart organs that may one day extend life indefinitely.

Many other potential trends are showing promise in the wearable tech space too:

  • Smart jewellery
  • Eye implant technology
  • Emotion sensing wearables
  • Implanted smartphones
  • Hearables
  • ID wristbands
  • Self-powered technology
  • Wearable payments
  • Smart clothing
  • Mixed reality

There are some important variables to consider when entering into any of the above spaces:

  • Making products more cost effective to a wider range of consumers.
  • Maximizing the battery life of your products.
  • Streamlining the overall size/bulk of wearable tech products to make them more practical as an every day wearable.

In addition, it’s important to create apps that keep people connected to their social media, in addition to monitoring their health and exercise progress, and which entertain via connecting to media platforms, VR, and video games is also a plus.

Wearable tech also allows retailers to create a better experience for their shoppers via their app integration ability. Mobile retailers are afforded the ability to process payments on the fly, from anywhere a data connection exists via wearable tech.

At this point, all any entrepreneur needs is imagination when deciding where they can inject themselves in the wearable tech market.