I sense a revolution on the horizon. A revolution that will slow the advance of technology, but one not stopping the advance. This revolution will redefine who and how the users, consumers, customers will use the next stage of integrated (wearable) convergence technology.
Defining wearable technology
There is, as you can imagine, a broad and somewhat vague definition available of wearable technology. One definition includes the term “gadgets”, not the most popular rendition of a costly piece of technology. A second definition includes the term “electronics”, while a third definition indicates “wearable technology – incorporating advance computer technologies”. None of these to me are very friendly!
This potential revolution will also be fuelled by the lack of a concise and broadly accepted definition that clearly defines exactly what is wearable technology? Why is there a problem in correctly defining wearable technology? Most likely it is the lack of unity by the developers as to what AI based wearable technology/computing actually is. As a past U.S. president once stated: how do you define what “is” is?
How do we currently see wearable technology? In many, many ways, which include headsets, smart watches, smart glasses, smart fitness devices, healthcare monitors, smart clothing, tailored technologies, multi-purposed clothing, smart wristbands, smart electro-magnetic polymers…the list goes on and on.
Humanisation of technology
For me a few key terms that are currently missing from the definitions are human type terms such as, seamless, beneficial, friendly, multi-tasking, solution based, critical, helpful and life changing. But that has or will soon change once the world understands that The Ultimate Wearable Technology, for me, is not multiple items but an AI based single seamless, converged, beneficial, useful and critical tool. In my opinion, this title belongs to the self-driving (driverless) car.
Shocked, disappointed, think I’m crazy, off the chart, just plain nuts? Think again.
The ultimate wearable technology will be the AI based driverless or self-driving car. Doubt my conclusion? Take a look at what firms are leading the charge (pun intended), Google, Apple, Tesla, all new technology based brands. Traditional car companies are adapting their dated and wasteful technology and calling it driverless. To me, that is like putting skates on your laptop to speed up a download!
The automobile, when first introduced, redefined the world of transportation, business and personal travel. Now the fully integrated converged, self-driving or driverless car will do the same and more.
This technology, once rebranded will succeed beyond nearly all projections. Too many people see the current level of technology as a combination of the Jetsons and the Flintstones. “Fly by wire” did not work too well for the aviation business, did it?
Why success is ensured
A single tasked multiple use tool like driverless/self driving technology (the Swiss army knife/Leatherman of wearable technology) provides a perfect definition to wearable technology. More importantly this self-universal cocoon of seamless, beneficial, friendly, multi-tasking, solution based, critical and life changing computing and technology will impart change as we never have seen before.
Driverless or self-driving technology will over time morph into all those things that are considered wearable today. From a marketing point of view; data capture will be complete, lifestyles redefined, health care re-invented, travel and leisure will become leisure while traveling and hotels, motels will need to be designed, developed and branded. Think driverless/self-driving vehicles marketing means Google metrics on steroids times 100,000!
Technology will allow us to feel the wind blowing our hair, the wheel shake caused by the pavement, the sound of the tires wearing out against the road surface, brakes screeching, the shifting of gravity as we round a corner all while we fully enjoy the trip. We will all feel these wonderful sensations while watching a 3D, 5K screen, downloading a movie as it is currently being made at a far off location. The seats will use the mentioned electromagnetic polymer to sense our emotions, likes dislikes, altering the script, the ending to make us all happy. While at the same time planning our meals, stops, and (maybe) keep us healthy via some seat based sensing exercise program built in to our new home car.
When this encompassing wearable computing technology is ready, with our new lifestyle will be able to live in our “cars”, a new state, a new city, a new country as needed day in or day out.
Marketing will be truly universal, worldwide, and local all at the same time, changing with each mile we drive, not “we” the computer driving; marketing will reach the level of “Be Local, Buy Local”. Your future family may no longer say “Home Sweet Home” but may state “Home is where the car is –at this moment in time”.
It sounds funny, but this concept is not too far from the truth.
The future is going to be a seamless, wrapped around our universal wearable cocoon that will not only be our future home or our pod of life but will in my humble opinion be the seed to sow discontent and the for mentioned revolution while at the same time sowing new levels of pleasure, joy, fun and empowerment. Fun redefined will be the true cause of dissent. I believe most people can accept spying or “sharing” of their personal data, but few will allow fun being taken of their lives, unless of course the brand offering/marketing the fun is willing to some how pay for the change.
Wearable technology via any definition is the future trend that no one can stop nor should we, but the revolution I mentioned will happen, revolution to all “things new” always happens. However it is the degree of the revolution as to whether it “truly revolutionises” the world or not. We are at a cross roads (pun intended) of technological, wearable, useable technology and the history of our brave new world.
The wearable car
Wearable technology will truly revolutionise the world, via the driverless- wearable car, a device, tool that is benefit driven, increased pleasurable productivity (fun time) and will make our lives better (less work) and yes offer the brand a universal tool to “touch” us all in the most highly personalised manner that we have currently developed. Marketing will also need to change, redefine its role based on a generation that cannot look to the past for any point of reference.
Think of having a consumer’s attention, 360 degrees of uninterrupted, focused and task defined. Marketing messages and images flying by on our many in car screens – windows, offering to this “captured” audience the next level of SoLoMo (Social, Location and Mobile). Immediate sensory response via the seats, couches, and beds we lie upon as our “auto car” takes us to our selected location.
A marketer’s dream comes true, but is it perhaps a nightmare for the consumer? Your AI based “auto” will be able to teach, learn from your request and even educate as you effortlessly drive around the drivable earth!
The wearable car will also fulfill the brand’s dream: relevant data, streaming 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year, personalised, captured, measured, researched, and responsive. This stream like the highway being driven on will be seamless and unobtrusive. The stream will be automated, volunteered by technology to technology perhaps for end use and distribution by technology.
The next big thing is currently being developed on an interactive paperless device that via a future version of blue tooth will without direct human intervention design, develop, manufacture, deploy worldwide. Perhaps this new future this new next big thing will be developed during our relaxed travel time as we sightsee – served, driven by technology in a new and in some ways a fantastic manner.
For me, I have always embraced technology, but in my own carefully measured way. I look to the concept of technology, emerging technology based on the DIRECT and DESIRED benefits of the said new technology – for my family or me. I may not like the concept of a driverless/self-driving computer – currently I am torn between like and dislike. The car, this wave, is not a wave but a tsunami that is disruptive, destructive, and yet creative, ultimately healing and helpful as well as a bonanza for marketers. What will marketers, brands do when they come to realise that the consumer no longer uses technology but lives in the technology? A brave new world indeed.
In summary I see wearable technology as a transitional media like the QR code. Wearable will morph, change, mutate into “being a being” technology, a technology that is a combination of human, AI, wearable, metrics, social, location and mobile based tools which will include the next big things that are now just a thought in someone’s mind, about to be converted into a fixed “hard” investable idea.
Beep beep’m, beep beep, yeah thanks Beatles!