There is a lot of hype around emerging tech such as wearable technology and augmented reality. Some industry fans go as far as saying that this is THE year of wearable technology.
According to Gordon Padkin from Freescale, one of the panellists at the Wearable Technology Show (10th-11th March), “barriers to entry from a software and electronics perspective are very low, so it’s a good time to join the industry.” He added that “50% of wearable technology ideas will come from start ups”.
Many of the companies at the show were indeed start-ups launching themselves with a new product or established ventures from the States launching a new product on the European market.
From a brain-sensing headband that helps you calm and settle your mind to bionic prosthetics, smart watches, smart cycling clothes with flashing indicator lights trigged by the movement of your arm, Virtual Reality headsets and Augmented Reality glasses, there were plenty of mind-blowing gadgets.
One thing that most of these tech companies hadn’t realised yet is that it’s not enough to put your cool new invention on display, demo it and chat to people sitting on stylish furniture. Combining cutting edge tech with a pinch of artistic vision and creative user experience design is what can help you come up with a piece of art to engage the unengaged with your invention at events like this.
Intel, one of the very few well-known brands exhibiting, managed to draw the attention of picture snappers and a few tech hacks by blending haute couture with moving butterfly wings… called the Wearable Butterfly Effect.
The Augmented Reality “show” was more of a tag onto the Wearable Technology show with a few start-ups and smaller companies you could count on a hand or two.
However, one of the most exciting companies in the world of Augmented Reality – Magic Leap – was not present. That’s because they are not quite ready yet to shout out loud about their wizard glasses, which have been awarded a patent only last month. But there are rumours that a launch date Willy Wonker style has been set. So watch out for those golden tickets! They have been busy perfecting their product with the ambitious goal of “bringing magic back into the world”.
On their website, Magic Leap say: “Most of us know that a world with dragons and unicorns, elves and fairies is just a better world… Most people focus on making machines smarter. Wouldn’t it be better if we focused on making people smarter?” Here is a video which shows what sort of reality they are developing: