Forget iPhones and tablets. The latest product shaking up the consumer electronics market is the smart watch, most notably the Samsung Galaxy Gear smart watch, released this September. Having been building steadily since 2012, consumer anticipation for wearable technology has now reached fever pitch, with global firms such as Sony and Apple also rumoured to be launching their own rival products.
Designed to interact with our existing array of electronic devices, the smart watch positions itself as a more convenient way to send messages, make calls, take photos and check emails. But just how wearable and convenient are these new devices? Smart watches may have brought wearable electronics technology closer to the market and into the homes of consumers, but are they really the start of the wearable electronics revolution?
The answer to this question seems to be: not quite yet. Described as a ‘prototype masquerading as a product’ by Samsung’s own Mobile and Telecoms director, the consensus among consumers and retailers alike is that the Galaxy Gear smart watches have fallen short of providing truly wearable technology. By offering smartphone capabilities but limiting them to a watch format, the new products aren’t giving an accurate picture of the potential of this emerging market. However, the products do offer a glimpse of what’s to come; technology which can deliver on the elusive promise of true ‘wearability.’
Smart Watches: the start of a wearable electronics revolution?, a free white paper from +Plastic Electronics, delves deeper into these market place opportunities for manufacturers and retailers. From wellbeing and fitness to healthcare, there are numerous opportunities spanning multiple sectors for this new technology. Straps informing the wearer of their heart rate during exercise and devices which monitor a patient’s vital signs throughout the day are just two examples of the potential this new technology has to offer in enhancing consumer’s lives.
The white paper reveals that integral to this exciting age of wearable electronics will be conformal, flexible components seamlessly integrated into discreet and intuitive products. In order to realise these products, a core technology toolkit is required – and these technologies are in the process of coming to market. A number of start-up companies, including US-based mc10 and UK-based technology provider Plastic Logic, are currently developing the flexible displays, sensors, and other components required to enable wearable technology. Smart watches: the Start of a Wearable Electronics Revolution? explores the current state of this technology and tracks its progress in the industry.
The white paper also reveals the key opportunities this market offers to manufacturers and retailers.
Click here to download Smart Watches: the Start of a Wearable Electronics Revolution.