One of the big buzzes at this year’s CES was “wearable technology,” but let’s be honest, while there are many to choose from, they are not mainstreaming yet. A lot of people who buy fitness trackers stop using them. Is the everyday person already overwhelmed by personal quantification? We are certainly seeing huge leaps being made in professional sports training and the serious athlete. There are devices that will measure way more than your heart rate and calories burned. We are seeing everything from detecting your oxygen levels, biometric data, hydration and muscle activity, preciseness of movement/ technique and sleep patterns. Gone are the days of bulky chest straps and being wired up to a machine while on a treadmill. Increasingly, we will see less intrusive devices like bio-stamps and even smart t-shirts with embedded sensors. Yet, is it all just TMI for the average gym goer?
“Cyberchondria” is a term coined for people self-diagnosing using tenuous data gleaned from the Internet and our ever-connected gadgets to support their health fears. Doctors are noticing that these devices can escalate health anxiety. Some people find themselves trapped watching numbers constantly and feeling out of control checking their health monitors.
“Breathe” measures the amount of toxicity in the air in different environments you enter into. It tracks pollution you encounter. Whether you are particularly concerned about the environment or have health issues like asthma, you will receive notifications if your location is particularly harmful to your health.
Bloom is a cervical ring containing an electronic sensor that’s designed to track a woman’s internal body temperature. It can send a smartphone alert to the woman — and her partner — when it’s her optimum time to conceive a child.
There is also a growing market for wearable motion sensors designed for the elderly person who lives alone, keeping a record of daily activity and sending an alert to family members if, for example, the wearer falls, or isn’t following his or her usual pattern of moving around the house.
WHY IT MATTERS: The evidence in the BODY WARRANTY Wave is about getting the most out of your body. For health monitors to be really helpful they can’t just throw data at people. The future of personal quant should not just be “what am I doing.” Rather, it should pull all device info together into one place where you can see how your data is connected, helping you make meaningful health predictions and translate those to your life choices. Most people struggle with keeping their new year’s health resolutions, and from what we see, it’s because of feeling overwhelmed. Overwhelmed with new routines, new technology, new diet and fitness trends. Can your product, business or brand help encourage or simplify people’s daily lives?