Image courtesy of Phandroid
Now that IFA 2014 and Apple’s event has passed, we are left with a handful of devices. Most notably the iPhone 6/6+ and the Galaxy Note 4/Edge, but in 2014, every smartphone deserves a companion… and it isn’t a bluetooth headset.
Smartwatches are on the rise in both popularity and practicality. When smartwatches first arose, they were big and bulky, not very practical as far as features, and the design wasn’t very pretty. IFA 2014 however, introduced us to an entirely new looking smartwatch. The Moto 360 and the LG G Watch R both sport the first circular display to come on a smartwatch.
At first, smartwatches were not very easy on the eyes, coming with big square displays that lacked features. Thanks to the new innovation in display technology, watches are now able to come in both circular designs (which I find the most appealing) and square designs that have a slight curve to them. The profile to the watches are becoming more to what we are used to as far as wrist watches go.
Not only is the design of the smartwatches improving, so is practicality. The interfaces, specifically Android Wear, are always improving. Google is all-in on wearable tech and they have promised to continue to update Android Wear as much as possible. The success of the smartwatch could solely rest on Google and their ability to put out an operating system that is efficient and functional. A smartwatch without a good OS is just an glorified MP3 player and notifier you can fit on your wrist.
Along with Google, Apple and Samsung are releasing their own operating systems for their respective smartwatches. This is just what the smartwatch market needs: competition. Companies competing and forcing each other to always put out up-to-date software and continue to make improvements will only make the smartwatch more successful.
Most smartwatches now are even coming with an IP 67 rating. This means that the watches can survive under one meter of water for at least 30 minutes without getting damaged and are completely dust-tight. Smartwatches are becoming as practical as normal watches. The ability to take a shower or go swimming with your wearable tech is also a huge step in the right direction.
Along with the more practical features, the device will only succeed if other companies, such as application developers jump on board. Developers are key to creating useful software that smartwatches utilize so users don’t get bored with their experience. Currently the Google Play Store has thousands of Android Wear apps with more and more being added everyday. Companies are already developing apps for the Apple Watch (iWatch) and that can be said about Samsung’s Tizen OS as well.
Smartwatches are on the rise, and it doesn’t seem that they will slow down anytime soon. The push from large phone companies such as Apple, LG, Motorola, Samsung, and Sony is too great for it to fail. As long as smartwatches continue to become more and more efficient and practical, they will only gain popularity.