Did you know that one of the most popular trends in tech right now is fashion? Crazy, huh? More known in Silicon Valley as “Wearable Tech,” the trend has been exemplified by Google Glass but showing up all over the place, is taking the world by storm. From health, to privacy, to straight-up sensational style, these 10 new innovations in the world of wearable technology are blowing are minds.
1. Radiate Athletics: Fitness-related wearable tech makes our inner gym rat really excited. With so many devices like the Jawbone UP and Nike+ Fuelband, on the market, we’re always pumped when we see a company trying to do something new and different to improve our health. Radiate Athletics definitely fits the bill. They’re producing workout gear that reacts to your body’s activity and shows you, in real time, how hard you’ve been working. The color of the garment changes and highlights the muscles that you’re working so you can check out how well your workout is really going.
2. Sesame Ring: You know that feeling of digging through your bag to find your public transportation card? Worse, you know that feeling of missing your bus or train because you can’t find it? This simple, 3D-printed ring is designed to replace those cards and streamline your commute. The Sesame Ring has been successfully funded over on Kickstarter and they currently only work in the Massachusetts Bay Area, but we’re hoping they’ll expand soon!
3. Daredroid: This cocktail-making dress is pretty much the coolest thing we’ve ever seen. Seriously. It’s designed to be worn by a waitress or bartender and dispenses drinks according to the following rules: when it senses your presence, it will dispense juice. But here’s the fun part: you have to play a game of Truth or Dare and successfully answer to get the booze you need to complete your cocktail. Be careful, if you get too close to the dress (and thus the person wearing it), the system shuts down completely and there will be no drink for you! Keep your distance! We’re thinking this would be a cool way to create a unique bar experience or even just a fun party game.
4. NFC Ring: The NFC ring, a recent Kickstarter project, is a ring with embedded data designed to let you control your tech and share information with simple gestures. The two coolest applications of the device right now basically use the ring as a key. You can use it to unlock any NFC-enabled smartphone or tablet with just a touch and you can coordinate it with an NFC-enabled lock for your front door. It has separate public and private data inlays so you can use it to share contact info and store passwords without worrying about them getting stolen.
5. Ping: This hooded top is designed to be the first intuitive social networking garment. It will connect to your Facebook account and perform specific functions based on your activities. Pull up your hood, tie a bow, zip it up, and it will Like, Comment, or Friend. It’s totally a concept at the moment, and kind of insane, but the idea of being connected to social media without having to whip out your phone is pretty cool. And also a little creepy.
6. Sensoree: This company creates clothing that displays what they call “extimacy” or externalized intimacy. (Challenge: use that word in a sentence with someone this week.) Basically the clothes show the emotions of the wearer via color change. For instance, it will go blue if you’re feeling calm or pink if you’re excited. It does so through sensors that detect bodily rhythms. We’re not totally sure if we want everyone knowing our every emotion (especially during *that* time of the month), but it might be useful to see if your boss is mad on sight!
7. Insider Bands: Insider Bands just debuted at Outside Lands and it’s a product that uses wearable tech to make music festivals even more awesome. Festival-goers put on an NFC-enabled wristband to check into locations, take photos, and send messages to friends. This allows music-lovers to capture their favorite moments even with limited cell reception and quickly find their friends in a crowd at a big venue.
8. Stealth Wear: In a similar vein to WiFi-blocking wallpaper, this wearable tech is designed for the slightly-paranoid-but-not-totally-off-base type of person. It’s counter-surveillance fashion, with protection from thermal imaging and incoming and outgoing phone signals. Okay, so it may be a little too paranoid for us, but we do appreciate the increased attention that’s being paid to personal privacy here.
9. Sensoria: We discovered these a little while ago when they were seeking funding on Indiegogo and we’re still kind of intrigued. This is a wearable fitness tracker, but instead of going around your wrist like most do, this one is a sock! That’s right, put this on under your shoe and not only can it track your activity, but it can also detect and help you correct your form. Great for the injury-prone jogger!
10. Hand Tech: Um, WOAH. This is unfortunately still just a concept but we had to include it because it’s awesome. This glove would allow you to project, take pictures, exchange data, and record videos with your hands. It can also translate sign language! We’re loving the idea and hoping that they actually get produced commercially so we can snag some for ourselves.
Are you wowed by wearable tech? Did we miss any awesome new trends in the market? Talk to us in the comments below.