Doing the Dreaming of Tomorrow – Classic or Upgrade?

What do we think of when we hear the words ‘wearable technology’? Google Glass and fitness trackers such as Nike+ Fuelband will probably spring to mind.

When you are in the moment of something new and different can you honestly see how that particular item could be improved? Think about the first ever television, people probably thought it was the best thing since sliced bread. They had the best tech in the world and it was great to use and look at – that’s probably what they thought. Now look at our televisions, they are flatter than a piece of paper and lighter than a new born baby.  If it’s new, innovative and up there in the word of all things shiny we lap it up, and can’t think of anything that could possibly come along and beat it.

However, there are always early adopters who want to be a part of that new, innovative ‘thing’ and will want to compete and make something better, either by adding a few bits and bobs to it or actually making it better inside. Think about it, sometimes the simplest of things are the most successful, and when technology tries to weasel its way in to try and compete, it doesn’t always work – I’m looking at you wearable tech.

Look carefully at the wrists of those around you and you will likely see someone sporting an activity tracker of some kind – a Nike Fuelband, a Fitbit or a fancy watch that does everything you could ever imagine. The classics are dying out and making way for wearable technology that we perhaps don’t have full advantage of and will become obsolete in a few years, or if we do it’s only until the novelty of it wears off.

We all love technology, we love it so much that as soon as there is something new and exciting out we’re all happy to wait in line for hours just so we can be the first to have a go. Take for example every new iPhone that has been released, they are always slightly faster than the previous and a slight change in design. People go crazy for the iPhone’s, because they are new, exciting and thee brand everyone loves. Back before the iPhone, did you ever think for a second people would be lining up outside a shop for the latest Nokia phone wondering if they had changed the way game Snake? People didn’t care, if it was able to ring people then the phone did its job.

Let’s go back to when watches did only what they were designed to do, tell the time. The Pulsar P1 gets credit for being the very first digital watch, it was a limited edition (of only 400) and the P2 was the first to digital watch to be produced in any significant number. The Pulsar P2 entered the market with a huge splash in 1973 during the opening scenes of “Live and Let Die”, the first James Bond movie starring Roger Moore.

The P2 was a very simple digital watch by today’s standards. With its single button, it only had the capability to show the time (hours, minutes, and seconds) – no date, day of the week, stopwatch, alarm, or any other features were included. Still, the P2 was a technological breakthrough and even to this day it is considered by horological historians as the first entirely successful digital watch in history and still a very popular watch to track down and wear.

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Fast track to 2013 when the first smart watch was released by Samsung, the Samsung Galaxy Gear, remember it? Of course not, no one remembers it because no one was interested in this kind of tech until Apple was. When Apple created their very own Apple Watch literally a year later, everyone wanted to know.

Watches now don’t just tell you the time, if anything it tells you everything but the time. “What’s the time?” I don’t know…but check out how many steps I’ve done today… With buttons and slides to get you from one app to the other the main function of these ‘watches’ is to help you with your day to day life, how many calories you have burnt, how much sleep you are getting, call a friend and setting reminders are all fantastic but, what is the time?

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Wearable Tech through the ages

The use of wearable technology is increasing, although  many of us were slow to adopt these devices, they are starting to gain traction and one day will be the norm. In the 1970’s and 80’s a few companies released the first portable TV, the world was not ready then but now they are everywhere, from literal portable TV’s to watching content one of your devices.

But the main question is, will wearable tech be relegated to the domain of gadget enthusiasts or could these budding fashion statements soon become part of our day-to-day lives?

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