Introduction of IoT wearable
The total sales volume of the various wearables would be around 123 million with a total value of $ 14 billion in 2016; whereas in 2020, it is expected to go up to around 411 million in volume and $ 34.2 billion in value. The various types of IoT-enabled wearables are enlisted as follows:
- Fitness, activity, sports tracker
- Smart glasses
- Virtual and augmented reality headsets
- Wearable cameras
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The IoT-enabled wearables are capable of recording data. The recorded data can be sent by these wearables to the cloud via a smartphone by using various connectivity options provided in the phone such as Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, etc. The data stored on the cloud remained secure and can be accessed irrespective of the geographical location of the user using the wearable device.
Types of Consumer Wearables
The various types of consumer wearables are fitness trackers, smart watches, smart glasses, virtual and augmented reality headsets, wearable cameras, jewellery, clothes, hats, shoes, etc.
There are various locations where these wearables can be worn and embedded. For example, if you want to track your fitness level, you can wear wristbands or watches on your hand.
Out of the various wearables, as mentioned above, we will explore three of them viz. fitness trackers, smartwatches, and smart glasses.
Fitness trackers are wearables that are used to track the fitness level of the consumer. These are also known by the term ‘Activity Trackers’. These wearables are mostly of wristband type and are worn on a wrist just like a normal wristwatch.
These fitness trackers can also have companion apps that can be downloaded on a smartphone and used to monitor various fitness parameters, such as heart rate, blood oxygen levels, body temperature, etc. Some other types of measurements related to the body can also be recorded using these types of trackers. These trackers record and provide helpful data to keep you in shape.
These companion apps also suggest useful tips, and pieces of advice and recommend exercises to be done to maintain the required fitness levels based on the recorded data.
There is a new concept coming in the wearables market that is popularly known as ‘Connected Garments’. Smart clothes like ‘Biometric Shirts’, ‘Smart Fabrics’, ‘Smart Belts’ ‘Smart Sleeves’ and ‘Contactless Payment Jackets’ seem to be appearing in the market. These are mainly related to tracking the fitness parameters of a user.
Smart clothing is not just limited to fitness anymore. There are products available that capture our vital signs. For example, smart socks can monitor heart rate.
For instance, there are smart socks from ‘Owlet’ for babies that can monitor a baby’s heart rate making sure that babies get uninterrupted sleep and breathing during monitoring.
All In One (AIO) smart sleeve is the first compression sleeve smart wearable. It enables a user to track his/her activities more precisely, as well as helps in monitoring crucial health indicators such as heart rate, blood oximetry, and full-time ECG/EKG. For Heart Rate monitoring, it will have ECG technology. It will also have other features like monitoring sleep, air quality, workout intensity, body temperature, stress levels, and UV rays.
Smartwatches are computerized watches that can be worn on a wrist. They look like normal wristwatches used for timekeeping. Smart watches are equipped with very advanced features, such as functionalities like calling capabilities, messages notifications, maintaining a phonebook, alarm functionality, calendar, data storage facilities, pedometer, camera, smartphone connectivity, Bluetooth connectivity, social sites connectivity, etc.
Smartwatches have audio-video and speech recognition capabilities. They have Liquid Crystal Display/Organic Light-emitting Diode (LCD/OLED) display, touchscreen, and touchpads/buttons.
A smartwatch can be synchronized with a smartphone by using Bluetooth technology. After establishing the connectivity, the watch’s interface can be used by the wearer for initiating and answering phone calls from their mobile phone, reading e-mails and text messages, listening to music, etc.
Smart glasses can be defined as wearable computer glasses that can record information or whatever the wearer sees. These can be worn like normal glasses. These smart eye wears provide many features and functionalities like the photo, audio, video capturing, GPS tracking, etc.
Smart glasses consist of transparent ‘Heads up Display’ (HUD) or ‘Optical Head Mounted Display’ (OHMD). Some smart glasses may have ‘Augmented Reality’ (AR) covers/overlays that can reflect the projected ‘Digital Images’. It also allows the user to see through it or see in a better way.
Some smart glasses may have almost all the features of a smartphone. They can even run preloaded mobile apps, and communicate to the Internet via touch buttons or voice commands. Some of them may have activity-tracking and life-logging functionality. The following are some more features of smart glasses:
- High-resolution display
- Bluetooth and wi-fi connectivity
- Audio-video capability
- Touch screen
- Head motion tracking sensors
- Magnetic compass sensors
- Ambient light sensors
- Microphone and speaker
- Smartphone connectivity
- Social sites connectivity
- GPS tracking
- Speech recognition
- Brain-computer interface
- Eye tracking
- Micro USB connectivity