10 wearables which aren’t watches – and we actually kind of want them!
In 2015 there’s no doubt of the way in which mobile technology is headed. Even before the Apple Watch was released earlier this year, 3% of households in the UK owned some form of smartwatch. Apple now holds 75% of the smartwatch market so it’s probably safe to assume that number is now much higher.
At international tech events such as CES (Consumer Electronics Show) in Nevada, wearable tech gets a little more exotic than the smartwatch. At the show earlier this year, for example, “Belty” the smart belt was unveiled. This Friday, digifi.it are looking at our top 10 weird and wonderful wearable gadgets.
This ring is designed for the finger tip rather than to be worn around the finger, and effectively replaces your mouse and keyboard. The ring allows you to paint, write, point, pinch to zoom, play games and even interact with 3D models, all within 15ft of the sensor plugged into your computer.
Billed as “The World’s First Sleep Sensing Headband” the Aurora headband is designed to help you control and remember your dreams. The band backs up these big claims with clinic-validation, using dream lights, sounds and algorithms to monitor and enhance your sleep. It also will gently wake you up “easing the sleep-wake transition”. Definitely sounds like something the digifi office bees need, but unfortunately they’re currently only available for pre-order in the US. ($299)
Belty: “The New Belt Experience” is as far as we can tell, the first “smart belt”. Belty automatically loosens and tightens your belt as you sit and stand, and vibrates when you’ve sat for too long or if you need to have a stretch. Honestly, no-one at digifi.it currently has issues tightening their belt, but it will probably come in handy for someone. Right?
Yep, you read it right – smart socks. Surprisingly there are several different brands of smart socks available, but these socks with smart, machine washable textile sensors come equipped with a smart anklet, so really you get two smart wearable devices in one! The socks work as a kind of advanced pedometer, also tracking your cadence and foot landing techniques as you walk and run, if you’re into that kind of thing. At $199, they’ll at least be the most expensive pair of socks you’ve worn for a while.
Nod is a rather bulky but infinitely cool device that tracks your movements and transforms them so you can fully experience Virtual Reality environments, interact with your mobile devices, or even command flying drones with a wave of your hand. The ring currently works with everything from Android and iOS devices to the Oculus and even Google Cardboard.
Be kawaii with these Japanese wearable cat ears! These ears aren’t just cute: they track your brainwaves via sensors on your forehead and ear and tell others whether you’re feeling relaxed, focused or “in the zone” with a series of cat-like reflexive movements. Perhaps not a useful addition to your everyday life but they might become a staple in the digifi.it office at only $49.99.
eSkin Tattoo is a super thin, flexible NFC tag that you apply to your skin (although in theory you could stick it anywhere) which allows you to store information and interact with your mobile devices. The device can be used to unlock your android devices, open the camera, play or skip music tracks, open an app or even make contactless payments! $11.99 to basically become a phone Jedi isn’t too bad at all either.
3. The BTC Ring
Our third bit of finger-bound wearable tech is this Bitcoin engagement ring. Whilst it is effectively a QR code on a bit of metal, the true smarts of this device lie in the value it represents. Your spouse-to-be can look up the value of the Bitcoin uploaded to the Blockchain inscription of the ring via the android app, and in the websites’ terms “see how much you are really cared for.” Also, unlike traditional engagement rings, you can add extra value to the ring with a simple upload, rather than visiting a jeweller. Romantic.
(For extra laughs, check out this promotional video.)
The first wrist-bound wearable device in our list and in at number 2 is the Cicret bracelet. With the tagline “Make your skin your new touchscreen” the Cicret is probably the coolest thing we’ve seen for a while. It projects your phone’s screen onto your arm, which you can then use as a touchscreen – making your phone as waterproof and shockproof as your arm is! The only problem we can see arising is being able to type with both thumbs…
This motorcycle helmet does what Google Glass only ever dreamed it could do. The rear-mounted camera means that riders have a 360-degree view of the road, effectively eliminating blind spots. The picture is projected as a transparent HUD onto the visor of the helmet. Combining safety and style, the helmet comes without the beta-version style faux pas you see with many start-up wearables, and we challenge you to find a better-looking helmet.