2015 has come and gone; and along with the New Year comes many new and improved technologies to pay attention to moving into 2016. One of these newer technologies is wearables. Many experts would agree that this has been the segment that has seen the most growth in the past year and will only continue to advance as the industry moves forward. In fact, according to market research the overall industry of wearable technology is expected to reach USD 31.27 billion by 2020.1
Another study has indicated that in 2015 there was an increase of 57.7 percent in adults using wearable devices over 2014. The study goes on to project that this growth will accumulate to 81.7 million adults using wearables by 2018.2
The numbers go to show that the market is moving the direction of wearable technology and there will, seemingly, be many new features and improvements to these devices as newer versions are released throughout the year.
But enough with the numbers! Below we have highlighted some of the wearable products to keep an eye on throughout 2016:
|Apple Watch 2: In April of 2015, the release of the Apple Watch took place with much fanfare. During the remainder of 2015, the product topped $1.7 billion in revenue. 3 The exciting news moving forward is the anticipated launch of the Apple Watch 2. Although the date has yet to be announced, the expectation is to see a new version of the Apple Watch by the spring of 2016. So, what are rumored new features of this version?
Battery Life: Various reports have claimed that Apple is planning to install a larger battery to the Apple Watch 2 in hopes to increase the assumed "24 hour charge life" of the previous version. The challenge for Apple is not increasing the size of the watch. The rumored plan is to work on producing a thinner OLED display to help accommodate the size increase of the battery. No official estimated charge life has been announced as of this post, but this is expected to be a priority for Apple.
Health Sensors: This feature has been rumored to see a heavy increase with the expanded competition. The individual new features of this have yet to be released, but are expected to be much more expansive than the current "standard" features that track hear-rate and activity tracking.
FaceTime Camera: As with all other Apple products, it has become apparent that there is a demand for a front-facing HD camera with the Apple Watch 2. There is no guarantee that this feature will make the cut for the newest version in 2016, but rest-assured this is a top priority for Apple moving forward.
|Fitbit Blaze: With the launch of the Apple Watch in 2015, many expected to see the decline of the Fitbit as a result. However, the actual response was quite the opposite. According to reports, there were around 7.5 million Apple Watches sold during the past two quarters. In that same time period, Fitbit sold about 9.2 million fitness trackers, more than double the devices sold in the same time period in 2014. 2
In response to an over-growing market, Fitbit is preparing to launch the Fitbit Blaze in March of 2016. One of the groundbreaking features of this product is the Fitstar, which provides structured workout programs. Some of the additional features of this product are listed below:
• Battery Life of 5 days
• Color touchscreen (customizable)
• Optical HR sensor
• Automatic sleep tracking
• Call/text notifications
|Casio Smart Outdoor Watch: No rumored release date has been announced yet for this product, but this is one of the first smart watch products that are specifically targeted towards outdoor enthusiasts. One of the cooler features of this device is an interface for people who fish to track times of day when fish are the most active based on information such as atmospheric pressure, tides, etc.4
Some of the additional features included are:
• 1.32 inch dual layer display with 320 x 300 pixels resolution
• You can monitor: altitude, air pressure, tide graphs, sunrise/sunset, etc.
• 50 meter depth water resistance
• Weighs 93g
• Sensors: pressure, accelerometer, gyrometer & compass
• Bluetooth & WiFi