webmasterAugust 13, 2015August 13, 2015With the introduction of smartwatches, hearable devices, head mounted displays and even technology in shoes and clothing, there’s no question about it – wearables are here to stay. But how will they make your business more profitable and run more productively? Here is an overview of wearable technology and what its future might hold for your business in the coming years. Smartwatches What are they? Smartwatches are wearable computing devices worn on a user’s wrist that offers functionality and capabilities similar to those of a smartphone. Manufacturers Apple, Samsung, Sony, LG, Motorola, Microsoft, Asus, Huawei, Alcatel and Pebble Business Applicability Smartwatches when paired with a smartphone can allow for: Connectivity to the Internet for search capabilities Running of mobile apps, like Facebook and Twitter Making calls Text messaging or video chats and GPS coordinates and location directions Optical Head-Mounted Display (OHMD) What is it? Google Glass is a type of wearable technology that displays information in a smartphone-like, hands-free format. Business Applicability Share your experience. Recording video and/or taking a series of photos and then sending directly to the office on a real-time basis can help share a meeting experience with those who might not be able to attend. Presenters can use it as a hands-free aid. Rather than using notes or a teleprompter, speakers can view all their slides and notations on Glass for a seamless presentation. Voice-activated commands. Just like your smartphone, Glass will respond to what you need. Examples are “take a note” or “start a Hangout” or “start recording.” Live remote training can occur. Glass allows users to train remote employees while at a live training conference or, better yet, in a real customer call. Hearables What are they? Hearables are wireless wearable computing earpieces that enable voice input and return results audibly to the user’s ear. Right now, development is in the earbud or earring arena. Business Applicability Hearables might be pick up a person’s name in a meeting and “whisper” details about that person to the user to help them remember them. Because they are voice activated, a computing tool on the other end could give information to the user relevant to the meeting. Conversations can be captured in a meeting for future review – great option for litigation support or a peer review. Company officials can listen in and help a sales representative with a presentation on a real-time basis. What Are The Drawbacks? There are three major drawbacks currently with wearables and given enough time, I am confident these will be overcome. Smartwatches are the fastest growing wearable segment but need to be paired with a smartphone. In addition, there are no hardware agnostic brands – in other words, you can’t pair an Apple Watch to an Android phone. There are not enough apps for wearables and there is no one “killer” app to define it. There is speculation that developers are waiting to see which operating system (Google versus Apple) wins over the hearts and minds of the consumer. Until this is established, software developers are happy developing apps for current mobile devices. Most wearables are considered too complicated to use, according to a recent report by Accenture. Where are Wearables Going? Most analysts believe wearables have a place in the business arena and to be convinced of this all you have to do is look at the success of Disney’s MagicBand. This $1 Billion dollar investment has really paid off, as each band is tailored to the wants and needs of each wearer. Individuals can get on rides, pay for food, enter their hotel rooms and purchase gifts – all through the use of the brand. In addition, Disney can collect real-time data about use and move staff around based on current wait times at rides and restaurants. Imagine a world where employees can hold their employee id, health record, corporate credit card, office key and start the company car all from one wearable device. Imagine a world where employers would pay for these wearables and negotiate lower health insurance premiums as long as employees used the fitness app and shared their exercise results with their employers. Imagine a world where companies could control their security system, surveillance cameras, thermostats and lighting all from one hearable device. You won’t have to imagine this world for very long because it is coming very soon. Wearables are exciting and they will evolve to fit the needs of business professionals around the globe. Just you wait and see. Hartford Technology Rental Can Serve Your Needs Now and in the Future Hartford Technology Rental stocks a large inventory of Apple Mac rental equipment to suit your business needs. You can also rent a computer, copier machine and many other technology offerings from us. Give us a call at 888.520.5667 today!