Wearable Technology and FitnessThe fitness industry is full of wearable products for people obsessed with working out. Options like watches, rings, and earbuds that can do everything from monitor your heart rate to counting your steps to making sure you get a good nights sleep are quite popular. These fitness trackers and smartwatches are basically like a wearable computer. Even though you don't see too many people talking into their watch like a phone, they are becoming more and more common with standalone capabilities. But how about wearable technology and clothing? It would make sense to have our shirts or pants be "smart" since they are usually something no one ever leaves home without.
Clothing That Has Your BackThis article highlights why wearable tech is a smart move:
Smart clothing started taking its first tentative baby steps in 2015 and while it's not quite gone mainstream just yet, more companies are starting to play around with the concept of connected garments. Much more than strapping gadgets to our wrists, faces, ears and feet, smart clothing can constantly track our heart rate, monitor our emotions and even pay for our Starbucks. All without grabbing a phone or even tapping a smartwatch screen. Read the full post here: The best smart clothing: From biometric shirts to contactless payment jacketsThe above article provides some of the coolest smart clothing tech, with a rundown of the features. There is everything from shirts, shorts, pants, socks, hats, swimsuits and bras that can offer typical components like tracking your fitness and playing music, but some are much more sophisticated. The swimsuit can warn you if you've been in the sun too long, shorts that can coach you on stride length and hip rotation, yoga pants that can encourage you to hold that pose a little longer, and socks that monitor your baby's heart rate, breathing, and sleeping patterns. So how smart are smart clothes? Pretty darn smart!
NikeConnect JerseyTake that another step with Nike offering a team jersey that can connect you with your favorite NBA team: By tapping your smartphone to the "jock tag," you'll get information about your team's stats and highlights, licensed products, tickets for games, and even a personalized playlist of your favorite player available for download from Spotify. Pretty cool, right? The are a couple potential downsides, though. For one, all the above-mentioned perks pour in whether you want them to or not. They will also know quite a bit of personal info about you such as where you bought it, where you live, and your location each time you connect your smart jersey to your phone app. Oh, and did I mention that they cost $200? As with all technology, the cost of these wearable smart clothes will eventually come down once it becomes more mainstream.
Smart AccessoriesClothing accessories are part of many people's daily ritual, and there's a growing trend for some that aren't necessarily smart technology but are just plain smart to use. Purses, computer bags and backpacks with a built in solar panel that have the capability to charge your mobile devices are hot items for outdoor lovers. They usually contain a flexible monocrystalline solar panel, battery, charge controller, plugs, and cords and are great for people that do a lot of walking or hiking but have also been used by the military and in situations of natural disasters, such as the recent hurricanes, that knock out electrical power. This article offers some good reasons why lugging around these solar powered bags makes sense:
...life can often feel like a constant hunt for USB ports and plug sockets. And, while keeping your phone juiced is just about doable when you're at home or in the office, what if you're going for a hike? The good news is that there's an alternative source of energy available wherever you are: the sun. And technology is starting to harness its power, with solar-powered bags becoming increasingly common. See the full post here: 10 brilliant solar-powered bags to keep all your gadgets chargedBackpacks that not only have solar chargers but also security and proximity features are great for traveling. None of them mentioned in the above article are extremely expensive, but most are over $200. And as we said before, the cost usually comes down once the supply and demand goes up.