Wearable technology is rapidly increasing in popularity, and developers continue to find new and innovative ways to put it to good use. For example, the Apple Watch gives people hands-free access to many of their iPhone’s most notable features. Having a phone on your wrist is certainly helpful, but read on to discover some of the other notable ways that this tech can and will change the world for the better.
1. Remote Health Monitoring
Fitness-obsessed individuals have already turned to items such as Fitbit to track their workouts, but what about others who have serious health issues that need to be continuously monitored? Some wearable tech companies are currently developing remote health monitoring solutions that will enable those in need to avoid spending an exorbitant amount of time and money on in-person monitoring.
For example, Biotricity offers advanced Mobile Cardiac Telemetry units that are available for individuals and hospitals. This technology can be used to monitor heart rhythms and respiration, and it also makes it easier for physicians to diagnose medical conditions such as coronary heart disease and cardiovascular disease. In other words, patients will be able to receive a quicker diagnosis and keep a closer eye on their health condition by using wearable technology.
2. Enhancing In-Person Credit Card Payment Security
Credit and debit card payment security is always a priority, and this is the primary reason that chip card technology has been implemented in many countries. However, there is a newly developed wearable tech that could soon make chip card readers obsolete.
Consumers in Italy and Brazil have already become acquainted with the Biyo readers that scan their palms in order to pay for purchases. This greatly enhances security because each person has their own unique hand vein patterns, and the patterns must match for someone’s card to be charged. Palms are synced via iOS or Android devices, including the wearable Apple Watch.
3. Saving People Money on Health Insurance
Your insurance rate most likely increase every year, but what if you could personally impact the rate that you pay and be rewarded for exercising? Fitbit and other wearable health technology is being heavily eyed by the insurance industry and large employers for its potential to reduce healthcare-related expenses.
Although this evolution of wearable tech is still in its infancy, you can expect to have future insurance premiums be positively or negatively affected by the way that you take care of yourself on a daily basis. For fitness buffs, this would be a great way to save a lot of money. Everyone else would receive a financial incentive to get in shape.
4. Enabling Mind-Controlled Electronics
The science fiction genre has introduced us to many concepts that have gone from seemingly fanciful and far-fetched to eventually coming to fruition in the real world. One of the most intriguing Sci-Fi ideas has long been the possibility of being able to control electronics with nothing more than our minds. Thanks to wearable tech, it is now possible for people with certain disabilities or those who are recovering from an injury to control everything from simple smartphone functions to an electric wheelchair through the power of thought.
5. Improving Workplace Morale
Surveys have indicated that 25 percent of workers worldwide are unhappy with their jobs. This number balloons to 70 percent in the U.S., so it is no wonder that companies are looking for innovative ways to boost workplace morale. Wearable tech can record hundreds of personal data points, and analyzing this makes it possible to better tailor the workday toward improving satisfaction and productivity. For example, if this data shows that most employees experience a reduction in stress while listening to classical music, a company could decide to play it building-wide on a daily basis. Additionally, businesses will have the opportunity to gauge whether or not their workforce benefits from exercise-related concepts such as walking meetings.
6. Boosting the Performance and Efficiency of NGOs and Charities
Charities and non-government organizations (NGOs) are often spread thin financially and have a difficult time remaining in touch with people who are out in the field. This is especially true of charities that send volunteers and employees into remote areas to provide assistance to people in need.
Giving each worker wearable technology would make it possible to monitor everyone from one centralized location. When a worker begins to exhibit high levels of stress, someone from the charity or NGO can intercede to improve their morale and help avoid burnout issues. Ultimately, this will make everyone involved more efficient, which in turn will increase the overall performance of the entire company.
7. Making People More Aware of Their Fitness Needs
It is easy for people to overrate their daily level of physical activity. In fact, scientists have proven that most of our perceptions do not match up with reality. This problem could be easily conquered by wearable tech because we would all be able to learn the truth about our physical expenditures. As an added bonus, this type of technology can clue people in to potential health issues before they become very serious.
8. Syncing to Charity Apps
There are several charity apps that enable users to make free contributions to the cause of their choice with actions like walking, running, or cycling. Wearable technology will continue to increase its ability to sync to smartphones and other devices, which makes it the perfect way to do something good for ourselves and others without needing to have our phone on hand at all times.
9. Reducing Distracted Driving Accidents
Distracted driving causes an average of 1,153 injuries and 9 fatalities daily, and many of these avoidable accidents can be linked to cellphone usage. The Apple Watch has already made it easier to answer phone calls on the go, and it enables hands-free conversation. In the future, wearable tech will almost certainly expand upon this idea to make it possible to start and end calls without having to take your eyes off the road, even if your physical phone is not close by. As a result, distracted driving accidents should begin to decline over time.
10. Increasing Workplace Safety
Workplace accidents claimed the lives of almost 4,700 American workers in 2014, and the majority of these deaths would have been prevented with an increased emphasis on safety. Wearable tech has many potential applications in this regard, ranging from giving workers the ability to test equipment more easily to monitoring people for high levels of stress or anxiety. This tech could also be used to give employees on-the-spot training and access to life-saving information.
New and highly impressive wearable tech is being developed at a rapid rate, and it is likely that these devices will eventually become as commonplace as smartphones and TVs. With a seemingly endless list of practical uses, wearable tech has already had a positive impact on the world, and its full potential is still being discovered.
Featured photo credit: Kārlis Dambrāns via flickr.com